By Sabina Mollot
Police are looking for a senior citizen who’s had had limited success in a series of robberies, most recently at the Dunkin’ Donuts in Stuyvesant Town.
In that incident, which occurred on Friday, September 8, the man, who’s believed to be 65-70 years old, pulled out a kitchen knife and demanded money from an 18-year-old staffer. However, according to the employee who was reached on the phone this week, Tanzina Haque, the robber didn’t get it.
According to Haque, the interaction started normally with the man asking about prices of the things he wanted, like a doughnut. But then he took out his knife. At first, Haque said she didn’t notice it, so he made a point of telling her he had one while saying, “Give me the money.” However, she refused. The robber asked again, and Haque told him to leave. When he still kept asking, Haque said she got louder, again telling him to leave.
“I said, ‘I’m going to call the cops.’” Finally, the man gave up and left empty-handed.
Haque added that she wasn’t scared because there were a few other people in the store with her, including a woman customer who was behind the man, and also because of his age.
“He was a much older guy,” she said, adding, “I thought, he doesn’t have a gun. I have time to run.”
In other known incidents in Manhattan, the suspect headed to Coco, a bubble tea and juice spot at 38 Lexington Avenue and East 24th Street, on August 11. He simulated a gun by sticking his hand in his pocket while demanding money from an employee. A day later, he went to Gigi Café at 307 Seventh Street on August 12. He told an employee there he had a gun and demanded cash.
Police said it wasn’t clear if the robber was successful in getting cash in either of those two incidents and an employee couldn’t be reached for comment at Coco or Gigi.
The man did have more luck in Brooklyn, though, in a couple of holdups that took place over the summer.
On August 19, police say he pulled a knife on a cashier at a Subway sandwich shop at 66 Court Street. The employee handed over an unknown amount of cash and the robber took off.
On July 30, he simulated a gun while demanding cash from a 20-year-old employee at 7-Eleven at 146 Empire Boulevard. The cashier turned over the money and he took off with that as well as some candy and a pack of cigarettes.
Police said the man, who may be homeless, is black with a medium complexion and was last seen wearing black glasses, a black Du-rag, a gray sweater and dark shoes. At the Subway shop, he was also seen with a large backpack with a cane hanging from it.
Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS or for Spanish 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto nypdcrimestoppers.com or texting their tips to 274637(CRIMES) then enter TIP577.