Gramercy package ‘thief’ arrested

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police have arrested a man they believe to be behind multiple package thefts in residential buildings since February.

Jacob Roman, 40, was caught in front of 201 East 15th Street and Third Avenue on Saturday, March 30 at 11:45 a.m. when he was allegedly attempting to break into the building. Police said that a resident of the building recognized Roman from when he was inside the location previously and had been identified as someone who was wanted in connection to several past thefts of packages from the same location.

Roman was allegedly seen on video surveillance using a tool to gain entry into the same building on Friday, February 15 around midnight and helping himself to items left in the building’s mailroom.

Police said that Roman got inside the building using some type of tool on Sunday, February 17 and could be seen on surveillance video going through packages in the mailroom and leaving with items intended for residents.

A resident of the building reported to police that a package of his went missing from the mailroom on Thursday, March 7 and he later noticed that there was an empty package box outside his apartment with the contents missing. Police said that Roman could be seen on video surveillance using a tool to break into this building that day at 2:50 p.m. and allegedly stole packages from the mailroom.

He reportedly returned to the same East 15th Street building on Sunday, March 10 around 9:15 a.m. and allegedly removed packages after using a tool to get through the door.

Police said that he was also caught on video surveillance using a tool to break into 140 East 17th Street west of Third Avenue on Friday, March 22 at 3:47 p.m. and allegedly stole a red bicycle from the basement area.

When he was arrested, he was allegedly in possession of burglar’s tools and was also charged with possession of stolen property and criminal trespass. Roman was charged with the additional burglaries inside the 13th Precinct on Saturday, March 30 at 3 p.m.

An attorney for Roman did not return a request for comment by T&V’s press time.

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