Homeless man set free after slugging woman in random NYC attack

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A homeless man with 77 prior arrests sucker-punched a 68-year-old woman in a random attack inside a Manhattan subway station — and was only issued a desk appearance ticket before being set free, according to cops and police sources. 

The victim was inside the 34th Street-Herald Square station, on the northbound R train platform, just before 8 p.m. Tuesday when John Chappell, 64, suddenly clobbered her in the face, according to police.

The woman was taken to Bellevue for her injuries, cops said. 

Chappell was busted a short time later on West 34th Street near Sixth Avenue, and charged with assault. He was handed a desk appearance ticket, cops said. 

Most of his prior arrests, dating back to 1986, were for marijuana possession, reckless endangerment, assault, petit larceny and turnstile jumping, police sources said. 

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