According to police, the alleged rape happened at about 10 p.m. on a westbound train on the Market-Frankford Line.
SEPTA officers took a man into custody following the assault and the woman was taken to an area hospital where she was treated for her injuries, said Tim Bernhardt, the superintendent of the Upper Darby Police Department.
The suspect, who has been identified as Fiston M. Ngoy, 35, has been charged with rape, indecent assault, sexual assault and other related charges, Bernhardt said.
Investigators said surveillance video shows Ngoy sit next to the victim and attempt to touch her. The woman is seen attempting to push him away several times.
The video then shows Ngoy push her down, rip her clothes off and sexually assault her, police said.
Police said a SEPTA employee noticed something was happening and notified police, who met the train at the 69th Street Transportation Center.
Police said the victim went into a state of shock. The assault went on for eight minutes.
"The victim, I spoke with her this afternoon. She is an unbelievably strong woman. She came forward, she provided a lot of information, and she's on the mend," Bernhardt said.
Police said the attack was caught on SEPTA's surveillance system. It may also have been recorded by other people on the train.
Ngoy is currently behind bars in lieu of 10% of $180,000 bail.
On Friday evening, SEPTA issued a statement calling the rape a "horrendous criminal act," and urged people to call 911 if they observe a crime being committed.
"The rape that occurred on SEPTA's Market-Frankford Line Wednesday night (Oct. 13) was a horrendous criminal act. The assault was observed by a SEPTA employee, who called 911, enabling SEPTA officers to respond immediately and apprehend the suspect in the act.
There were other people on the train who witnessed this horrific act, and it may have been stopped sooner if a rider called 911. SEPTA urges anyone who observes a crime being committed or any dangerous situation occurring to report it. Anyone witnessing an emergency should immediately call 911. For non-emergencies, we encourage the public to use the SEPTA Transit Watch app. If people see something they think SEPTA Police should know, this allows them to say something - quickly and discreetly.
Upper Darby Township Police are leading the investigation into the rape with assistance from SEPTA Transit Police. Anyone who witnessed the incident is urged to contact Upper Darby Township Police," SEPTA said.
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