WESTFIELD — An arrest was made Friday after a woman was raped in a home invasion after she had returned from a lunchtime job Tuesday afternoon.

Terence Rhue, 22, of Plainfield allegedly entered the house in the area of Longfellow and Forest avenues near the border with Scotch Plains around 12:50 p.m. and assaulted the woman during an attempted burglary, according to Union County Prosecutor William A. Daniel.

Rhue was arrested on Friday and charged with first-degree aggravated sexual assault, first-degree robbery, second-degree burglary, third-degree possession of a weapon for unlawful purposes and fourth-degree unlawful possession of a weapon. He was being held in the Union County Jail pending a first appearance.

Daniels did not disclose any details about the attack.

composite sketch of the suspect in the assault
Composite sketch of the suspect in the Westfield, NJ assault (Union County Prosecutor's Office)

“We are grateful for the collaboration with the local and State law enforcement agencies who assisted our office in quickly locating and apprehending the suspect,” Daniel said in a statement.

Warnings and heightened presence

Police in both Westfield and Scotch Plain increased police presence in the area of the attack and issued warnings to residents about being aware of their surroundings and to lock up their houses and vehicles.

"Please be extra cautious! Do whatever you can to keep yourself and your loved ones safe," Scotch Plains police said.

Westfield police and Mayor Shelly Brindle said that they were aware of the "fear and uncertainty" the attack has created.

Police are still looking for whoever raped women in July at Duke Island Park in Bridgewater and in the Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park on Sept. 28. Prosecutors in Middlesex County and Somerset County said there are "similarities" in the incidents and are working together on the investigations.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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