Jose Carrasquillo's photograph and name had been released a few hours earlier, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. After a group of teenagers noticed him in the Kensington neighborhood, a mob gathered and hit him with their fists. At least one person apparently hit him with a piece of wood.
Kris Torres, 16, told the newspaper he was one of the people who first spotted Carrasquillo. He said Carrasquillo denied the attack on the girl.
"We just pounded on him because we wanted him arrested," Torres said.
A police car drove by, possibly saving Carrasquillo's life.
Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey called the alleged rape a "particularly heinous crime." The victim was found by a passerby crying on the street just before 10 a.m. Monday.
The girl said a man accosted her and forced her into an alley after she took a younger sister to day care. She was in a hospital Monday night after surgery.