The 18-year-old who was arrested early yesterday under suspicion of being the notorious Upper East Side Groper has been charged in three of the sexual assaults. Suspect Jose Alfredo Perez Hernandez was charged with burglary, sexual abuse and forcibly touching several women throughout the last eight months on the Upper East Side. City Councilwoman Jessica Lappin, who represents the area, said she was relieved that cops caught him: "Let's hope this pint-sized pervert is off the streets for good." But Hernandez's father and former co-workers are unconvinced: "They got the wrong guy," the father told a neighbor, according to the Post.

At least twelve women were sexually assaulted by the groper this year, and we talked to two women who said they fought off attacks by the diminutive perv. Hernandez, who worked as a dishwasher at Antonucci Cafe on East 81st Street for the last six months, was caught after the restaurant building's super recognized him from a sketch. Previously, Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said that detectives accurately believed the suspect was a kitchen worker, because the incidents have occurred at “off hours.”

But Francesco Antonucci, owner of Antonucci Cafe, said that while Hernandez likely is the man in the sketch, he is having a hard time believing the 5-foot-2 dishwasher, who he described as like a restaurant mascot, attacked anyone: "We can't imagine he'd scare any woman. We believe it's not him, completely. He's very sweet." Nevertheless, Antonucci noted that Hernandez quite suddenly quit a few weeks ago, just after the groper's sketch was initially circulated. And another kitchen worker, Diego Sanchez, recalled, "Last Sunday, he told me he was looking for a lawyer. He was worried since the first pictures showed up on the streets."

Considering that at least 10 of the attacks occurred in the last two months, and that police had both a sketch and surveillance footage of the suspect from the subway, some are wondering why it took police so long to catch the groper. One reader had recounted her frustrations with bringing information to the police to us; two other women who were groped in a separate incident in Astoria described a similar slack response by police. But as CBS's Nina Pajak puts it, some women just wish they could have gotten a chance to confront the groper themselves: "I would simply relish the opportunity to kick him in the nuts."