By Sabina Mollot
A 53-year-old man who’d been staying at the 30th Street men’s shelter was arrested late Wednesday night for allegedly stabbing and robbing an elderly tailor in Kips Bay.
John Franklyn, who has five prior arrests starting in 1982, a police spokesperson said, was picked up by Staten Island police, and charged with attempted murder.
The arrest comes after the Department of Homeless Services, which oversees the Kips Bay shelter, also known locally as “Bellevue,” told neighbors the shelter would become a place for employed or employable men. This change in policy was made in 2015 after a woman was raped by a shelter resident at a nearby bar.
Police believe Franklyn strolled into Apel tailor shop on East 27th Street on Monday afternoon and demanded cash from the 78-year-old owner. The two men fought and at one point, the victim managed to chase the suspect out of the business with a chair. However, the suspect stabbed the business owner multiple times, fracturing his skull, puncturing his lung and causing other stab wounds. The victim then gave the robber $80 in cash and he fled.
The victim was described as being in critical but stable condition at a nearby hospital. It wasn’t clear by Thursday morning if Franklyn had an attorney.