Female bag thief preying on women at Union Square Starbucks

Nov16 Bag theft suspect2

Theft suspect at jewelry store

Cops are looking for a woman believed to have stolen wallets and bags from women at Starbucks as well as Gemma restaurant inside the Bowery Hotel. The thief apparently takes bags and wallets that their owners have hung on the backs of their chairs and uses their credit cards.

Two of the incidents took place at the Starbucks at 10 Union Square East.
On Saturday evening, October 14, a 24-year-old woman was having coffee when she realized her wallet was missing. She then discovered her credit card was used at a nearby Taco Bell at 18 East 14th Street.

On Monday morning, October 16, a 25-year-old woman at Starbucks realized the bag she’d placed on the floor next to her had disappeared. In this case, there were no unauthorized charges.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Cops looking for man stealing from lockers at New York Sports Club gyms

jan19-gym-thief1

Gym locker theft suspect

 By Sabina Mollot

Cops are on the lookout for a thief who’s been raiding lockers at Manhattan gyms for cash, clothes, laptops and other electronics since last September.

Police are currently aware of 14 thefts downtown, midtown and in Murray Hill and Chelsea as well as one incident in Gramercy, all at different locations of the New York Sports Club.

In the Gramercy incident, on October 13, the thief stole a 22-year-old man’s credit cards and keys from an unlocked locker at the New York Sports Club at 113 East 23rd Street near Park Avenue South. Based on surveillance photos, the white, very short-haired suspect is easily able to blend in, arriving to each place in workout gear or in casual clothing.

The first gym hit was the NYSC at 1221 Avenue of the Americas and 43rd Street, where the man made off with a backpack from an unlocked locker. He also took the victim’s shoes, headphones, credit cards and clothing.

jan19-gym-thief2

Police say he stole 14 times from different Manhattan locations of the gym.

Back in October, the commanding officer of the 13th Precinct, Deputy Inspector Brendan Timoney warned the community at a meeting about a rash of gym locker thefts. New York Sports Club, he noted, was an especially popular target. He recommended that gym users get master locks that require keys.

Anyone with information about the gym thefts is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

Cops issue summonses for underage drinking at First Avenue lounge

Mar17 Visana

Visana, a pizzeria in front and cocktail lounge in back, on First Avenue (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Visana, the First Avenue speakeasy style cocktail lounge that’s previously drawn the ire of neighbors due to nighttime noise, had the 13th Precinct’s commanding officer seeing red recently after officers issued seven summonses for underage drinking.

Deputy Inspector Brendan Timoney said the 13th Precinct will be taking a more active role with regards to disruptive patrons at Visana after those incidents, which occurred at the end of February.

“We’ve been on top of them lately but that was the straw that broke the camel’s back,” Timoney said. “(Visana owner David Jaffee) was crying out in the street saying they didn’t want this to happen but they advertised a party that night. They knew this would happen when they packed the place.”

Jaffee and his partner Ross Rachlin have been at a number of meetings of the 13th Precinct Community Council in the last few months but were not present this Tuesday as Timoney addressed community members.

Area residents, who were at the meeting to find out if progress had been made in keeping the bar under control, praised the police officers who have responded to the scene in dealing with the drunken crowds.

Visana recently failed to get the support of a Community Board 6 committee in its hopes for renewal of its liquor license. The business has an upcoming hearing with the State Liquor Authority regarding charges on noise and license issues.

Continue reading

Men indicted for rape, robbery; Officer assaulted at Bellevue

THREE MEN INDICTED FOR RAPE, ROBBERY

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., announced the indictment of Fernando Sandel, 27, Isaias Rivera, 31, and Joey Cruz, 26, for allegedly conspiring to rape and rob prostitutes. The defendants were charged in a New York State Supreme Court indictment with predatory sexual assault, rape, burglary, and robbery, among other charges, including conspiring together to commit those crimes.

On August 3, Sandel, Rivera, and Cruz contacted a prostituted woman online and met her in a Midtown hotel room, where they allegedly sprayed her in the face with mace and bound her wrists and ankles with zip ties before repeatedly sexually assaulting her. The three defendants are similarly accused of attacking a prostituted woman whom they met online in a Gramercy apartment the next day, spraying her in the face with mace and binding her wrists and ankles before sexually assaulting her. In an earlier incident on June 28, Sandel and Cruz allegedly sexually assaulted a prostituted woman on the roof of a Bronx apartment building after spraying her in the face with mace. The men are also charged with stealing property from each woman, including the purses of two victims.

MAN ARRESTED IN CONNECTION

WITH SEPTEMBER ROBBERY

Police arrested 25-year-old Mohamed Diaby inside the 13th Precinct last Tuesday at 10 p.m. for a robbery that took place at the corner of West 27th Street and Sixth Avenue on September 26 at 3:05 a.m. Police said that Diaby drove up next to the victim in a black Jeep and told him that he had a gun. He allegedly forced the victim into the back of the vehicle while two other suspects snatched his property. Police said the suspects then pushed him from the vehicle and fled north on Sixth Avenue. The victim tracked his iPhone to West 29th Street and Ninth Avenue but the phone was not recovered. The other two suspects have not yet been arrested.

TEENS ARRESTED FOR

‘THEFT’ FROM FOOD VENDOR

Police arrested a 16-year-old and 18-year-old Xavier Chalas for petit larceny at the corner of First Avenue and East 25th Street last Tuesday at 2:28 a.m. Police said that the teen and Chalas removed cash from a food cart at the corner without permission. Chalas was also allegedly in possession of a scalpel and was charged with possession of a weapon.

OFFICER ASSAULTED AT BELLEVUE

Police arrested 23-year-old Andrew Baker for assault of a peace officer inside Bellevue Hospital at 462 First Avenue last Friday at 7:20 p.m. While he was in police custody, Baker allegedly punched the officer who was guarding him in the face, causing swelling and pain.

TWO MEN ARRESTED FOR

‘MUGGING’ ON SEVENTH AVENUE

Police arrested 28-year-old Spencer Daly and 25-year-old Daniel Maldonado for grand larceny last Tuesday at 3:25 p.m. in front of 333 Seventh Avenue.

Police said that Daly and Maldonado removed property from the victim without permission, and Daly was found to be in possession of the victim’s property. Maldonado allegedly refused to be handcuffed and police said that he kicked out the passenger’s side rear window of a marked Radio Motor Patrol vehicle. He was also allegedly in possession of several credit cards that didn’t belong to him.

Daly was also charged with theft and Maldonado was additionally charged with criminal mischief, possession of stolen property, jostling and resisting arrest.

WOMAN ARRESTED FOR ‘ASSAULT’ WITH JEWELRY BOX

Twenty-year-old Hannah Sperber was arrested for assault last Tuesday at 12:07 p.m. inside 201 East 15th Street. The victim told police that Sperber hit her in the face with a jewelry box, causing broken front teeth and an injury on her head that required two stitches, and also caused a fractured wrist. Police did not have any information about how Sperber knew the victim, but she told police that Sperber is very aggressive.

‘DRUG’ SALE ON THIRD AVENUE

Eighteen-year-old Vincent McLeod was arrested for the sale of a controlled substance in front of 171 Third Avenue last Tuesday at 6:10 p.m. Police said that McLeod agreed to sell a quantity of a controlled substance to an undercover officer for a sum of money. McLeod was also charged with petit larceny and fraudulent accosting. Police said that McLeod is known as an MGZ crew member, which is a gang in Brooklyn known as Marcy Gangstas.

MAN NABBED FOR VERIZON STORE ‘BURGLARY’

Eighteen-year-old Fernando Rodriguez was arrested at the 13th Precinct last Tuesday for burglary. Police said that Rodriguez forcibly entered a Verizon store overnight and removed three cell phones without permission. After he was read his Miranda rights, he allegedly identified himself on surveillance video removing the phones.

MAN ARRESTED FOR ‘TRESPASSING’

IN WEST 26TH ST. BUILDING

Police arrested 34-year-old Patrick Gaillard for criminal trespass inside 25 West 26th Street last Wednesday at 8:35 a.m. Gaillard was allegedly in the basement of the building without permission to be there. Police said that he was also in possession of a gravity knife, and he was charged with possession of a weapon.

MAN NABBED FOR SELLING ‘DRUGS’

Police arrested 24-year-old Kyle Ayala for sale of a controlled substance and intent to sell a controlled substance in front of 125 West 26th Street last Saturday at 11:40 p.m. Police said that Ayala exchanged a quantity of a controlled substance with another person who wasn’t arrested. When police stopped him, he allegedly fled and once he was detained, he began to flail his arms to prevent being handcuffed. He was also charged with resisting arrest. When he was searched, police said he was also in possession of a quantity of a controlled substance and packaging for drugs.

MEN ARRESTED FOR ‘TRESPASSING’

IN NYCHA BUILDING

Two men were arrested for trespassing in a NYCHA building at 224 East 28th Street in separate incidents last week.

Police arrested 43-year-old Juan Nieves last Tuesday at 2:42 p.m. Police said that Nieves entered and remained unlawfully on the roof landing at the building even though a sign in the stairwell clearly states that roof access is not permitted except by authorized personnel.

Nineteen-year-old Kaliel Frazier was arrested last Thursday at 9:47 p.m. Frazier was allegedly trespassing on the second floor of the building.

MAN BUSTED FOR TRESPASSING

IN EAST 27TH ST. BUILDING

Vincent Querrazi, 48, was arrested for criminal trespass inside 243 East 27th Street last Wednesday at 8:58 p.m. Police said that Querrazi was trespassing in the sixth floor stairwell in the building. After he was searched, police found that he was allegedly in possession of a controlled substance and he was charged with possession of a controlled substance.

 

Police Watch: Men arrested for phone ‘snatching,’ man arrested with dildo

‘MASTURBATOR’ ARRESTED NEAR UNION SQUARE
Police arrested 44-year-old Reggie Frank for public lewdness at the corner of Fourth Avenue and Union Square East last Tuesday at noon. Frank allegedly exposed his erect penis through a hole in his shorts and started masturbating in front of the victim.

MAN CAUGHT WITH PANTS DOWN AND DILDO
John Pheffer, 69, was arrested for public lewdness in front of 3 East 27th Street last Wednesday at 2:49 p.m. Police said that he was in front of the building with his pants down, showing his private parts on a public sidewalk while holding a dildo in his left hand.

TWO MEN ARRESTED FOR PHONE ‘SNATCHING’
Police arrested 21-year-old Daniel Rodriguez and 26-year-old Cornell Williams for petit larceny at the corner of Madison Avenue and East 23rd Street last Saturday at 3:40 a.m. Police said that the two men were working together to steal property from the victim. Williams allegedly swiped a black Samsung cell phone from next to the victim’s hand and police said that Rodriguez was standing as a lookout. Rodriguez was also charged with possession of marijuana and Williams, who police said was in possession of the phone that the men allegedly swiped, was also charged with possession of stolen property.

MEN ARRESTED FOR ‘GAMBLING’ DURING DICE GAME
Police arrested six people for promoting gambling in front of 344 East 28th Street last Saturday at 12:10 a.m. Forty-year-old Quammie Logan, 21-year-old Michael McCants, 46-year-old Zadie Morris, 38-year-old Ian Shillingford, 25-year-old James Paige and 48-year-old Sean Shillingford were allegedly in front of the building playing Cee-lo, a dice game, for cash. Police said that Logan was in possession of the dice and $80 in cash when he was stopped by the officer.
Morris and Ian Shillingford were also charged with possession of a gambling device and possession of marijuana. Morris was allegedly in possession of a grinder with marijuana residue and police said that Shillingford was in possession of 36 glassine envelopes of alleged marijuana.
McCants, Paige and Sean Shillingford were also charged with possession of a gambling device.

MAN BUSTED FOR ATTEMPTED BIKE ‘THEFTS’ ON E. 14TH ST.
Police arrested 32-year-old Angel Rivera for bribery and possession of stolen property in front of the Stuyvesant Town Associated Supermarket, 409 East 14th Street last Tuesday. At 10:19 a.m., Rivera was allegedly carrying a screwdriver and police said they observed him removing a bicycle and bike parts without permission. He allegedly threw the screwdriver on top of a van in an attempt to conceal the evidence. Police said that he was found in possession of stolen property.

GYM ‘THIEF’ BUSTED
Police arrested 24-year-old Christopher Lafontant for petit larceny inside the New York Sports Club at 10 Irving Place last Tuesday at 12:55 a.m. Police said that Lafontant removed property worth over $1,000 from lockers at the gym without permission.

MEN ARRESTED FOR ‘DRUGS’ IN NYCHA STAIRWELL
Police arrested two men for the sale of a controlled substance inside 344 East 28th Street last Tuesday at 10:10 p.m. Police said that 36-year-old William Glen and 54-year-old Gerald Beatty sold a quantity of a controlled substance to an undercover detective in the staircase of a housing development. Police said that when they were stopped, Glen refused to be handcuffed by placing his hands inside his pockets and stiffening his arms. Police said he was in possession of a controlled substance that was in his left front pants pocket and he had a ziplock bag of alleged PCP in his right front pants pocket. He was also charged with resisting arrest, intent to sell a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance.

‘POT’ SMOKER TO COP: LEAVE ME ALONE
Adrian Cevallos, 24, was arrested at the corner of Madison Avenue and East 26th Street last Thursday at 3:32 p.m. Police said that Cevallos was smoking marijuana on a sidewalk and when an officer approached him, he allegedly tried to punch the cop, telling the officer to leave him alone. After a short chase, Cevallos allegedly resisted arrest by flailing his arms, going limp and forcefully pulling his arms away in an attempt to avoid being handcuffed. Cevallos was charged with resisting arrest, possession of marijuana and disorderly conduct.

BIKE ‘THIEF’ BROKE LOCKS WITH TEETH
Police arrested 53-year-old Nathaniel Gaines for burglar’s tools in front of 130 East 25th Street last Wednesday at 11:08 a.m. Gaines was allegedly casing several bicycles near Sixth Avenue and West 26th Street. Police said he then proceeded to 130 East 25th Street where he was seen physically breaking bicycle locks with his teeth. He was also charged with petit larceny, criminal mischief and possession of stolen property.

CVS EMPLOYEE ASSAULTED
Police arrested 46-year-old Keith Morris for assault in front of the CVS Pharmacy at 750 Sixth Avenue last Thursday at 10:10 p.m. The victim told police that while he was cleaning at work, Morris came up to the door of the store and started pulling on the handle. When the employee told him that they were closed, Morris allegedly grabbed him by the shirt, causing scratches on his chest. Two people walked out of the store, after which Morris allegedly punched the victim in the face multiple times, causing bruising and redness. The fight was broken up by a witness who was in the store.

‘PANHANDLER’ ARRESTED FOR BLOCKING TRAFFIC
Police arrested 46-year-old Rafael Cepeda for a New York State law unclassified misdemeanor and disorderly conduct at the corner of Lexington Avenue and East 29th Street last Friday at 6:03 p.m. Police said that Cepeda was begging in a public street, walking over to moving vehicles and causing traffic to be impeded.

MAN ARRESTED FOR ‘CASING’ CARS
Sixty-year-old Louis Rosario was arrested for petit larceny at the corner of Union Square East and East 15th Street last Saturday at 5:46 p.m. Rosario was allegedly casing over 20 vehicles in a car break-in prone location and police said that they observed him for 45 minutes, walking around Gramercy Park and looking into vehicles while allegedly trying to gain access by pulling on the car door. Police said that when they searched him, he was in possession of merchandise that he could not explain how he acquired. Police said that the vehicle where he stole property from was parked at East 17th Street and Second Avenue.

Man on bike snatching phones and bags from women in Gramercy and Flatiron

Phone and bag snatching suspect

Phone and bag snatching suspect

Police are looking for a man who’s stolen from at least eleven women throughout the Gramercy and Flatiron neighborhoods while riding a bike. Cops say the man has been riding up to women and then snatches their phones or their purses before pedaling away on either a Citi Bike or a bike with a basket.

The 13th Precinct’s new commanding officer, Captain Brendan Timoney, had warned the community about a cyclist stealing phones out of women’s hands while they’re distracted at the last Community Council meeting, but details on the crimes weren’t released by police until Wednesday night.

Cops say the larceny pattern, which began in February, is as follows:

On Monday, February 2 at around 11:30 p.m., the man snatched an iPhone from a a 32-year-old woman who was walking on 6th Avenue.

On Tuesday, February 3 at around 10:30 p.m., he grabbed an iPhone from a a 34-year-old woman walking on West 19th Street near 5th Avenue.

On Saturday, February 28 at 9 p.m., the man stole a phone from a 21-year-old woman walking on East 20th Street at Second Avenue.

On Saturday, March 7 at 11:30 p.m. the man snatched a purse from a 34-year-old woman as she walked along East 27th Street, in the vicinity of Third Avenue.

On Sunday, March 15 at 2:20 a.m., the man swiped a purse from a 29-year-old woman who was in front of 100 West 21st Street.

On Sunday, March 15 at 10:40 p.m., the man grabbed a phone out of a 22-year-old woman’s hand as she was walking along East 22nd Street.

On Tuesday, March 31 at 1 a.m., he grabbed a phone from a 24-year-old woman who was walking on East 21st Street near Park Avenue South.

On Saturday, April 4 at 6 a.m. he stole a phone from a 21-year-old woman who was standing in front of 32 East 32nd Street.

On Monday, April 20 at midnight, the man took a phone from a 27-year-old woman walking on 6th Avenue, in the vicinity of West 16th Street.

On Tuesday, April 28 at 1 a.m., he stole a purse from a 23-year-old woman in front of 544 6th Avenue.

On Wednesday, April 29, 2015, at 10:30 p.m., he grabbed a purse from a 42-year-old woman who was in front of 135 East 17th Street.

There were no injuries reported in any of the incidents and police say the the serial cyclist thief is a black man with a beard.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS or submit tips by logging onto www.nypdcrimestoppers.com or texting tips to 274637(CRIMES) then enter TIP577.

Man beaten outside Whole Foods, drug arrest outside Stuy Town

VIDEO SHOWS MAN BEATEN OUTSIDE OF WHOLE FOODS
Gothamist reported that a video was uploaded to LiveLeak on Monday that captured the beating of an unidentified man outside the Union Square location of Whole Foods. The video, which has since been removed, shows people who appear to be Whole Foods employees repeatedly punching and kicking the man who was attempting to get into the store after hours. The blog noted that the incident allegedly occurred on December 30. No arrests have been made but Whole Foods told Grub Street that the team members who have been identified so far have been placed on administrative leave.

DRUG ARREST OUTSIDE STUY TOWN
Police arrested 52-year-old Kenneth Spulka for possession of a controlled substance in front of 527 East 14th Street last Friday at 5:20 p.m. Police said that Spulka was in possession of a pipe with alleged crack cocaine residue.

ASSAULT AT IHOP
Police arrested 28-year-old Quincy Robinson for assault in front of the IHOP at 235 East 14th Street last Thursday at 6:34 a.m. Robinson allegedly hit another man on the head and cheek. Police said that the victim was bleeding from his head and had pain in his chest.

MAN ARRESTED FOR ‘STOLEN’ PHONE
Police arrested 21-year-old Tredez Colbert for petit larceny in front of the Bounce Sporting Club at 55 West 21st Street last Thursday at 2:33 a.m. Colbert allegedly swiped a Galaxy cell phone from a coat that was lying on a chair. A witness said that Colbert attempted to throw the phone to the ground after security approached him. Colbert was also arrested for possession of stolen property.

DRIVING WITH SUSPENDED LICENSE
Police arrested 45-year-old livery cab driver Dale Lama last Tuesday at 2:46 a.m. at the corner of East 22nd Street and Third Avenue. Lama was driving his livery cab when he was involved in accident. Police said that after checking his license, they found that it had been suspended.

WOMAN ARRESTED FOR ‘SKIPPING’ CAB FARE
Police arrested 21-year-old Israa Chegi for theft of services at the corner of Third Avenue and East 18th Street last Thursday at 5:07 a.m. The driver told police that Chegi and three men got into his cab at a downtown location. When they arrived at Third Avenue and East 18th, the men left without paying. Chegi allegedly refused to pay the fare. Police said that when she was arrested, Chegi said, “I want to act like a child.” She then fell to the ground, getting cuts on her knees in the process.

WOMAN ARRESTED FOR ‘ASSAULT’
Fifty-year-old Seynabou Diaw was arrested for assault inside the 13th precinct last Friday at 6:55 p.m. Diaw allegedly punched the victim in the face, causing pain to her lips. Police said that the incident occurred in an elevator at Bellevue Hospital inside 462 First Avenue.

TJ MAXX ‘SHOPLIFTER’ NABBED
Larry Roman, 26, was arrested for petit larceny inside the TJ Maxx at 620 Sixth Avenue last Tuesday at 7:24 p.m. Roman allegedly took merchandise from the shelf, concealed it inside his coat and attempted to leave the store without paying. Roman was also charged with theft.

‘THEFT’ AT AMERICAN APPAREL BY FORMER EMPLOYEE
Twenty-year-old Andrew Titaley was arrested inside the 13th Precinct for petit larceny last Saturday at 2:30 p.m. Titaley is a former employee of American Apparel and he allegedly stole three pairs of shorts from his old place of employment. Police said that Titaley walked into the dressing room and took off the tags, which a store employee found, and Titaley allegedly left the store without paying.

CREDIT CARD THEFT
Police arrested Eugene Smith, 31, inside the 13th precinct last Sunday at 2:15 p.m. for grand larceny. Smith allegedly took credit cards from the victim’s home and used it to make purchases without permission. Police said that Smith was also in possession of methamphetamine and ketamine. Smith was also charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of stolen property.

WOMAN ARRESTED FOR ‘CHILD ABUSE’
Police arrested 35-year-old Irene Peraza for endangering the welfare of a child last Wednesday at 8:22 p.m. inside 1186 Broadway. Peraza allegedly slapped her daughter, who is under 17, and also scratched her hand. The victim told police that the argument started when she tried to stop her mother from drinking because the daughter felt that her mother was drinking excessively. Peraza was also charged with assault.

CRIMINAL MISCHIEF AT LOCAL RESTAURANT
Forty-five-year-old James Sanders was arrested for criminal mischief inside the 13th precinct last Monday at 8:15 p.m. Sanders allegedly damaged the front desk computer screen intentionally while inside Cafeteria at 119 Seventh Avenue.

Three people have attempted to pay with fake hundreds at City Wings Café

Oct2 City WingsBy Sabina Mollot

City Wings Café, a new restaurant across from Peter Cooper Village, has a message for customers who’ve been attempting to pay for their food with counterfeit bills:

The fake buck stops here.

Will Hsu, the manager at City Wings, said that at least three different people (two men and one woman) have come in for the past three Sunday afternoons trying to pass off fake Benjamins as the real deal when purchasing small items like sodas. The phony customers have come in at especially busy times but still got caught since Hsu has to personally approve purchases made with large bills.

What’s caught his attention is that these bills look completely legit, passing the ink pen test. However, they flunk the smell test when the security line, a strip down the middle of new bills that’s supposed to be strong, has ripped easily each time.

When Hsu confronted the fraudsters, “they play dumb. ‘Oh, I’ll be back with another bill.’ They’re not coming back.”

And since the M.O. has remained completely the same, he believes the incidents are connected with a group of people involved. Hsu doesn’t remember much about how the suspects look, other than they are in their late 20s or early 30s, black and “very clean, legit, regular people. They order something small, like two sodas, something under five dollars.”

On Tuesday, Hsu put up a sign on City Wings’ door, warning would-be fraudsters that the next time a bill is suspected of being fake, police will be called. He also said it’s a heads-up for the other restaurants in the neighborhood.

Yves Jadot, one of the owners of the restaurants Petite Abeille and Vamos, which are across the street from City Wings on First Avenue, said he was not aware of anyone coming in recently attempting to pay with fake hundreds. Rather, it’s simply a problem his restaurants deal with from time to time. More often people will attempt to pay with fake twenties since it’s known employees check the hundreds.

“When someone buys a coffee with a hundred it’s a red flag,” said Jadot.

ID theft is common type of larceny in 13th Precinct

Deputy Inspector David Ehrenberg gives the latest local crime stats at Tuesday’s 13th Precinct Community Council meeting. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Deputy Inspector David Ehrenberg gives the latest local crime stats at Tuesday’s 13th Precinct Community Council meeting. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

In the first 13th precinct community council meeting after the summer break, the precinct’s commanding officer, Deputy Inspector David Ehrenberg reported that after a mostly uneventful season, crime is up 5.2 percent this month. However, he added that crime is down for the year overall.

Grand larcenies, traditionally a problem for this area, were up this month but are also down 7 percent for the year and decreased during the summer, Ehrenberg said.

Identity theft is the most common type of grand larceny and the deputy inspector noted that the precinct is still having problems with thieves stealing debit card information with card scanners taped over ATMs.

When a resident at the meeting inquired about the bank’s awareness of the problem in their own ATMs, Ehrenberg added that they weren’t necessarily at fault for missing it.

“The skimmers are only on the ATM for a very short period of time, for about an hour,” he said. “They’re usually put on later in the evening after the bank was closed already so they wouldn’t always notice.”

Ehrenberg emphasized that residents should call 911 when they encounter one of these skimmers, which are easily recognizable because they are flimsy and attached with double-sided tape.

Felony assaults have also been a problem this summer but Ehrenberg noted that in most cases, the fights involved people that knew each other. The increases are also due to assaults of EMTs at Bellevue and the shelters in the area. Grand larceny auto is also up, with nine cars being stolen within the precinct this month, compared to six that had been stolen by the same point last year. Ehrenberg noted that there seems to be a trend there and that it’s mostly rental cars that are getting swiped.

“There’s a way they can overcome the security system that Zipcar uses,” he said. “There’s another way they can use the device to get in and steal the cars. It’s a popular system and it’s going to take them a while to change it, so we’re seeing an increase in that in the command.”

He added that residents don’t have to worry so much about a car they have rented being stolen because most of these incidents have occurred in the locations where the cars are picked up.

As in the past, grand larceny of unattended property continues to be a problem for the precinct.

“There are still a lot of laptops being left in restaurants and coffee shops. You’re not going to leave $2,000 in cash just sitting there, so don’t leave your laptop,” Ehrenberg warned.

Residents at the meeting were curious about the impact of the mayor’s Vision Zero plan, which was introduced over the summer. Captain Steven Hellman noted that since Mayor de Blasio has been in office, the precinct has seen decreases in collisions this summer. There is currently an arterial slow zone on Seventh Avenue and Sixth Avenue will be a slow zone this December.

As in most community council meetings in the past, residents also expressed their frustrations about cyclists who don’t follow the rules of the road, often riding on sidewalks and without lights at night.

One Stuyvesant Town resident said that he’s been seeing delivery people riding their bikes recklessly near his building at 21 Stuyvesant Oval.

“You’re going to find a body in 20 different pieces due to these bicyclists,” the resident said. “They’re like kamikazes coming around the curve behind 21 Oval. Someone is going to get killed on the bottom of the hill. Pedestrians are getting less safe.“

Police Officer John Sedita said that the NYPD has a good relationship with Stuyvesant Town’s Public Safety officers and would talk to them about the issue. Another resident, though, had a suggestion for those two-wheeled officers as well.

“Remind Stuy Town security that they need lights on their bikes, too,” the resident, who didn’t want to be identified, said at the meeting.

Police Watch: Burglar hits Immaculate Conception Church, Former Beth Israel doctor sentenced

Compiled by Maria Rocha-Buschel

BURGLAR HITS IMMACULATE CONCEPTION CHURCH
Police are looking for a burglar who stole $11,000 in cash from the rectory at Immaculate Conception Church. The man entered the church at 414 East 14th Street on Sunday at 1:15 p.m. and then went into a bedroom located on the third floor rectory where he took the money from a nightstand, cops said. He is described as a light skinned man who was wearing a black baseball hat, brown shorts, white sneakers and a red t-shirt. Anyone with information about the burglary is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at (800) 577-TIPS. The public can also submit tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers Website at nypdcrimestoppers.com or texting TIP577 and their tips to 274637(CRIMES).

FORMER BETH ISRAEL DOCTOR CONVICTED
Lawrence Levitan, 58, was sentenced to six months of jail time and 1,000 hours of community service this past Tuesday. The former Beth Israel Medical Center ob-gyn pleaded guilty to grand larceny in the third degree this past February. At trial, he admitted to stealing $268,000 from the hospital by diverting insurance checks and cheating on his taxes.

CRAIGSLIST-SCAMMED IN COFFEE SHOP
Police arrested 24-year-old Dequaan Brown for a robbery inside the restaurant Coffee Shop at 29 Union Square West last Saturday at 2 p.m. A 26-year-old man told police that he was meeting Brown to buy a Galaxy 5 phone from him. He originally spoke to someone named Carlos that he found through Craigslist. They had agreed to meet in Union Square for the transaction but Carlos then called the victim at 1:45 p.m. and told him that he wouldn’t be able to make it but that his partner Dequaan would meet him instead. The victim told Carlos that he would wait for Dequaan in the Coffee Shop near the park. A few minutes later, the victim got a text from Brown asking for the location of the restaurant. When he arrived, he asked the victim if he had the money for the phone and after the victim gave him $400 in cash, Brown allegedly said, “I have a gun in my duffel bag. Don’t chase me.” He then walked out of the restaurant calmly and the victim followed him to the train station. They both ended up on a downtown Q train and the victim then asked the conductor to stop the train. The conductor stopped the train at Canal Street and the train doors opened, giving Brown the opportunity to run again. He allegedly attempted to flee but ran into two officers from the First Precinct. The victim told the police, “That’s the guy,” and Brown was arrested and brought back to the 13th Precinct.

NEIGHBOR HARASSMENT IN 19 STUY OVAL
A resident of 19 Stuyvesant Oval reported last Monday at 3:38 p.m. that she has been continually harassed by a neighbor in her building. She told police that she received two text messages from him and she was alarmed by the messages because they made no sense and were sexually explicit. She said that she ran into him on the street at East 18th Street and First Avenue. He started talking to her and made no sense, saying that she was yelling when she wasn’t and he told her, “You’re just another Jew.” The victim was alarmed by the incident and said anything else happens, she said that she wants to file an order of protection.

KNIFE PULLED AT WATERSIDE PLAZA
Police arrested 60-year-old Angel Fuentes for menacing inside 40 Waterside Plaza last Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. Police responded to the scene and a 55-year-old man told them that Fuentes allegedly came out of his apartment, displaying a kitchen knife and menaced him with it. At that point, the victim called the police and then met them in the lobby. Fuentes wasn’t in his apartment by the time police came but after conducting a canvass, they found him in the front of the building. He was also allegedly in possession of a small bag of marijuana.

‘PERVS’ NABBED IN UNION SQUARE
Police arrested two men for unlawful surveillance at the Union Square subway station last week. Thirty-seven-year-old Marquis Traynham was arrested last Thursday at 8:55 a.m. Traynham allegedly put an electronic recording device under the skirt of multiple women on a downtown 6 train and the subway stairs while the women were leaving the station. Police arrested 35-year-old Jose Quezada Veloz last Friday at 6:39 p.m. Veloz was seen standing directly under the right side of the stairs leading to the downtown 4/5/6 platform and he was allegedly looking up the skirts of women going up and down the stairs and also had his cell phone in video mode pointed directly under a woman’s skirt with the lens facing up.

HIT-AND-RUN ON EAST 23RD
A 48-year-old man reported that he was involved in a car accident opposite 400 East 23rd Street last Thursday at 10:05 a.m. He told police that he was driving west on East 23rd Street when a woman in a white sedan struck his car, causing him to hit a parked car. She then fled the scene west and onto First Avenue. There were no injuries and no arrests were made.

MOTORCYCLE STOLEN ON EAST 14TH
A 24-year-old man reported that his motorcycle was stolen after he parked it in front of 655 East 14th Street at midnight last Wednesday. He told police that he parked the bike there and when he went to retrieve it later on Wednesday, the bike was gone. The tow pound had no record of the bike being towed and Stuy Town security said that their cameras don’t face the area where the bike was removed from.

BAG STOLEN IN STUYVESANT SQUARE PARK
A 13-year-old boy reported that his bag while he was in Stuyvesant Square Park at the northeast corner of Perlman Place and East 15th Street last Friday at 2:45 p.m. He told police that he put his bag on a bench and walked around the park. When he went back to the bench, his bag, which contained his iPhone, Nintendo 3DS, a Pokemon game and school supplies, was gone.

FOUR NABBED IN BRAWL OUTSIDE STUY TOWN
Police arrested 42-year-old Christopher Todd, 39-year-old Anika Reynolds, 33-year-old Eric Gersbeck and another individual for assault in front of 647 East 14th Street last Thursday at 8:34 a.m. The four allegedly got into a fight in front of Stuyvesant Town. All of them sustained minor scratches and refused medical attention at the scene.

CYCLIST KICKED ON SECOND AVENUE
A 22-year-old cyclist reported that he was assaulted while he was riding his bike at the northeast corner of Second Avenue and East 15th Street last Thursday at 7 p.m. He told police that he was riding his bike and an unknown person kicked him, causing him to fall off the bike and cause minor bleeding due to a cut on his knee. The person then fled in an unknown direction and no arrests have been made.

IPHONE STOLEN FROM FARMER’S MARKET
A 22-year-old woman reported that her iPhone was stolen while she was in Union Square Park at East 17th Street last Saturday at 5 p.m. She told police that she was working at the farmer’s market and left her cell phone on a table unattended while she went to the bathroom and when she returned, her phone was missing. She said that she tracked the phone and it was located at First Avenue and St. Mark’s Place.

CYCLIST HIT-AND-RUN BY CABBIE
A 44-year-old man reported that he was involved in an accident while he was on his bike in front of 160 West 25th Street last Thursday at 7:30 p.m. He told police that he was riding his bike at the location when a taxi hit his bike from the rear. The victim then fell off his bike and got a bruise on his head and hand, and he also complained of back pain. The taxi fled the scene and a canvass was conducted of the area with negative results. The victim could only remember that it was a taxi that hit him and had no other information.

IPHONE STOLEN AT STUY TOWN PARTY
An 18-year-old woman reported that her phone was stolen while she was inside 330 First Avenue on Saturday, May 17 at 11:59 p.m. She told police that she had left the phone inside the apartment while there for a friend’s party and when she went back to retrieve the phone, it was missing. The phone was tracked through “Find my iPhone” to a location in Brooklyn.

MAN BUSTED FOR KNIFE AT FIRST AVE L
Police arrested 28-year-old Nicholas Kleoudis for criminal possession of a weapon last Saturday at 11:28 p.m. at the First Avenue L station. Kleoudis allegedly had a black metal clip attached to his front right pants pocket and upon further investigation, it was determined to be a gravity knife, police said.

ARREST MADE FOR ‘POT’ POSSESSION
Police arrested 29-year-old Anthony Womack for unlawful possession of marijuana last Saturday at 4:20 p.m. in the Union Square station. Womack was sitting on the steps in the station, blocking passenger movement. When asked, he had no form of identification to give the police and a bag of alleged marijuana was recovered from his left front pants pocket.

NO ARRESTS IN EAST 15TH ST. TAUNTING
A 41-year-old woman reported that she was harassed at the northeast corner of East 15th Street and the FDR on Sunday, May 18 at 4:30 p.m. She told police that someone approached her, pulled her hair and then ran away. When she confronted him, he told her, “We were playing a game.”

Police Watch, May 8: Man on robbery spree tasers victim, ‘perv’ busted at Union Square subway

MAN ON ROBBERY SPREE TASERS VICTIM

Photo of the suspect in Bhojan Inc.

Photo of the suspect in Bhojan Inc.

The NYPD is still trying to track down a gunman believed to be behind to a series of armed robberies of businesses starting last November. In the latest incident, he tasered his victim, before fleeing with $1,800, seven cartons of Newport cigarettes and 29 lottery scratch-off games. This occurred at Two Friends store on 46 8th Avenue on May 4. The robber first pulled a gun on a store clerk before ordering him onto the floor. He then zip-tied the victim’s hands and tasered him several times.
Police believe that he is the same thug responsible for a holdup at gunpoint at Marim Candy Store at 381 First Avenue across from Peter Cooper Village. In that incident, on February 28, he made off with about $3,000.
The suspect is described as white, 40-50 years of age, approximately 5’8” in height and of medium build. He was wearing a black Chicago White Sox baseball hat with the word CHICAGO printed across the front.
Anyone with information in regards to these incidents is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).  The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting TIP577 and their tips to 274637 (CRIMES). All calls are strictly confidential.
UPDATE, May 9: Police obtained photos of the suspect, seen here, taken in Bhojan Inc. at 270 West 36th Street, where he went on May 6 around 4:10 p.m. to redeem lottery tickets.

‘PERV’ BUSTED AT UNION SQUARE
Police arrested 50-year-old Stephen Martinez for public lewdness last Friday at 9:47 a.m. inside the Union Square subway station. Martinez was standing on the downtown 4/5/6 platform at Grand Central, allegedly masturbating with his hand inside his pants. He then boarded a downtown 4 train and stood behind a 30-year-old woman, closing his eyes and continuing to masturbate until his penis became erect, police said. He allegedly continued this behavior from the 42nd Street station to Union Square.

CAMERA ‘PERV’ ARRESTED IN UNION SQUARE
Police arrested 32-year-old Karl Sholder for unlawful surveillance at the Union Square subway station last Monday, April 28 at 3:50 p.m. A 24-year-old woman was walking up the stairs from the N platform when Sholder allegedly followed her while holding his cell phone under her dress with the video camera function activated. The victim had no knowledge of his actions and told police that she didn’t know him.

ASSAULT AT BARUCH COLLEGE LIBRARY
A 29-year-old man reported that he was assaulted while he was in the Baruch College library at 17 Lexington Avenue last Wednesday at 11 a.m. He told police that he was studying when another man came into the library suddenly and started making a lot of noise. The victim said that he approached the boisterous individual and asked him to please be quiet but the man said that he wasn’t too happy at being told what to do and sucker-punched the victim in the left eye, causing a blood clot in his eye and a swollen left cheek. No arrests were made.

PANHANDLER BUSTED FOR ‘WEAPON’ ON F TRAIN
Police arrested 54-year-old Stanley Rawls for criminal possession of a weapon on an uptown F train at the Sixth Avenue/23rd Street station last Thursday at 11:30 a.m. Rawls was seen panhandling for change by shaking a cup, walking up and down the middle car of the train, and after searching him, police found that he was allegedly in possession of a sock with metal bars in it.

BAG STOLEN AT SLATE
A 23-year-old woman reported that her bag was stolen while she was inside Slate bar at 54 West 21st Street last Saturday at 2 a.m. She told police that she was hanging out in the bar and left her bag on the couch. When she returned to get the bag, it was no longer there.

BAG STOLEN AT ACE HOTEL
A 28-year-old woman told police that her purse was stolen while she was at the bar in the Ace Hotel at 20 West 29th Street last Saturday at 2 a.m. She reported that she was with friends at the bar and put her bag on the table behind her where others had done the same. Ten minutes later when she went to retrieve her purse, which contained cash, her iPhone 5, MetroCard and keys, it was gone.

PHONE STOLEN FROM GANSEVOORT HOTEL
A 27-year-old woman reported that her phone was stolen while she was inside the bar at the Gansevoort Hotel inside 420 Park Avenue South on Friday, April 25 at 1:50 a.m. She told police on May 1 that she assumed the phone had fallen out of her bag because it doesn’t close securely. She said that she called her phone the next day and made contact with a man who said that the phone was in Brooklyn and he would return it to the Gansevoort because he would like someone to do the same if the situation ever happened to him. However, the man didn’t mention a time frame for the return and the victim said that she has been calling the hotel every day since the incident and her property hasn’t been returned.

BIKE DAMAGED IN EAST AVE. C GARAGE
A Peter Cooper Village resident reported that his bike was damaged after he parked it in the garage at Avenue C and East 20th Street last Wednesday at 6 p.m. He noticed after returning to retrieve the bike at 9 p.m. the same day that it had been vandalized. No arrests have been made.

CHAMPAGNE ‘THIEF’ BUSTED
Police arrested 54-year-old Wilfredo Rodriguez for petit larceny that occurred inside Gramercy Wine and Spirits at 104 East 23rd Street on Friday, April 18 at 2:16 p.m. Rodriguez allegedly removed a bottle of Moët Rosé from the shelf and fled the store without paying. He was arrested for the theft last Saturday at 4:40 p.m.

MERCEDES STOLEN ON WEST 20TH
A 35-year-old man reported that his car was missing after he parked it in front of 36 West 20th Street last Saturday at 9 p.m. He returned to the spot at noon the next day and found that the car, a Mercedes Benz valued at $83,000, was missing. The victim told police that he left the vehicle locked and secure and there was no broken glass at the scene. The car is equipped with an alarm but computer checks were negative.

TABLET STOLEN FROM PARKED VAN
A 42-year-old man reported that his property was stolen from his van that he parked in front of 3 West 17th Street last Friday at 2:30 a.m. He returned to the commercial van at 3:50 a.m. and he noticed that his passenger’s side window was smashed by an unknown object and his Samsung tablet had been stolen.

HARASSMENT AT FIRST AVE. AND EAST 17TH
A 66-year-old man told police that he was harassed while he was standing with his car at the northeast corner of First Avenue and East 17th Street last Sunday at 4 p.m. He said that another man hit his car window with his hand, cursed at the victim’s family and made threatening statements.

MAN ARRESTED FOR THEFT FROM CAR
Police arrested 47-year-old Franklin Gaskin for petit larceny at the northeast corner of Lexington Avenue and East 27th Street last Tuesday at 10:35 a.m. Gaskin allegedly removed a messenger bag from inside the victim’s car without permission.

MAN PUSHED ON EAST 17TH STREET
A 60-year-old man told police that he was harassed on East 17th Street between First and Second Avenue last Sunday at 4 p.m. He reported that he got into an argument with another man when the man pushed him to the ground.

Police Watch, Jan. 2

CARS DAMAGED

Two people reported that their cars were damaged in separate incidents last week.

A 23-year-old woman told police that her car was damaged after she parked it in front of 127 East 17th Street at 7 p.m. on Wednesday. When she returned to the car at 8:15 p.m. the same day, she found that her car had been hit by another vehicle, which fled the scene and did not leave any contact information.

A 29-year-old man parked his car in front of 530 East 20th Street last Friday at 9:30 p.m. and reported that he found it damaged when he returned to check on the vehicle the next morning. There was damage on the left side and the unknown vehicle left the scene.

MAN ARRESTED FOR DAMAGING COP CAR

Police arrested 26-year-old Roy Assan for criminal mischief last Thursday at 11:10 a.m. in front of the 13th Precinct stationhouse at 203 East 21st Street. Assan allegedly damaged the passenger’s side mirror of an unmarked NYPD vehicle by ripping the mirror off with his hands. He also kicked the rear bumper, police said.

CAR ACCIDENTS NEAR EAST 23RD

Two people reported in separate incidents that they were involved in car accidents near East 23rd Street in the last week.

A 50-year-old woman told police that she entered the FDR Drive at 42nd Street driving south last Friday at 10:45 p.m. and when she reached East 23rd Street on the FDR, a yellow taxi drove into her lane and collided with her car. The collision caused damage to the front fender of her vehicle but there were no injuries. The taxi continued south on the FDR without stopping.

A man reported that he was driving near the southwest corner of East 23rd Street and Avenue C last Tuesday at 3:45 p.m. when another vehicle hit his car. He told police that he made an attempt to stop the other driver, who slowed down but then sped off. The second driver has Florida license plates and no arrests were made.

MULTIPLE BURGLARIES FROM CARS

Four people reported in separate incidents that their parked cars were broken into.

A 58-year-old man told police that an iPad Air was stolen from his work vehicle after he parked it in the garage at 320 East 23rd Street on December 20 at 9 a.m. He realized that the property, which belongs to his company, was missing when he checked on the car last Thursday at 3:15 p.m.

A 35-year-old man reported that he parked his car at the southeast corner of First Avenue and East 23rd Street at 2:15 a.m. last Thursday and when he returned at 6:30 p.m. the same day, he noticed that the passenger’s front window was smashed in and his GPS device had been stolen.

A man reported at 11 p.m. last Monday that his car was broken into earlier that day after he parked it in front of 130 East 18th Street. He left the car in that spot at 8 p.m. and when he returned at 10:50 p.m., he saw that the rear passenger window was broken and his GPS, camera and inverter had been removed.

A 77-year-old man told police that his car was broken into after he parked it in front of 302 East 19th Street last Wednesday at 5 p.m. When he returned to the car at 7:30 p.m. the same day, he found that the rear driver’s side window was broken and his cell phone, radio and parking permit were missing.

DRUNK DRIVER’ IN PARKED CAR ARRESTED

Police arrested 33-year-old Hamlet Perez for intoxicated driving  at 4:20 a.m. last Sunday. A homeless man told police that he saw Perez passed out and unresponsive at the wheel of his car, which was parked in front of 270 Park Avenue South. The fire department and EMS knocked on his car window for 20 minutes, trying to wake him up. Police said that Perez was passed out in the car with the engine still running with his foot on the brake. He was removed from the vehicle and allegedly had slurred speech, a heavy odor of alcohol on his breath and poor coordination. He refused a Breathalyzer test at the scene.

MAN ARRESTED FOR BROKEN NOSE AT GANSEVOORT HOTEL

Police arrested 22-year-old Samuel Hodgkinson for assault at the Gansevoort Hotel Bar inside 420 Park Avenue South last Wednesday at 12:20 a.m. A 26-year-old man said that Hodgkinson allegedly head-butted him in the face, causing his nose to break.

‘DRUNK DRIVER’ ARRESTED ON FIFTH AVE.

Twenty-three-year-old Shahbaaz Virk was arrested in front of 225 Fifth Avenue for intoxicated driving last Wednesday at 6:33 a.m. An officer saw Virk allegedly cut across lanes of traffic on Fifth Avenue from west to east, took a U-turn on Fifth Avenue going north in the southbound lane and then attempted to parallel park. When the officer stopped the car, Virk allegedly had a slight smell of alcohol on him and blew a .124 percent on a Breathalyzer test.

CAR STOLEN ON AVENUE C

A 56-year-old resident of Peter Cooper Village reported that his car was stolen after he parked it in front of 256 Avenue C on December 23 at 5 p.m. He told police that he parked the car in a legal spot and when he went to check on it at 10:30 a.m. the next day, it was missing. He checked the tow pound and the city marshal’s office and was unable to locate the vehicle.

PHONE THEFT AT EAST 15TH ST. HIGH SCHOOL

A 17-year-old student of the High School for Health Professions and Human Services at 345 East 15th Street reported that her phone was stolen on December 18 at 11:30 a.m. She told police that she went to the restroom and when he returned, found that her backpack was open and her Blackberry Curve was missing.

PHONE STOLEN AT KAMBI RAMEN HOUSE

A 27-year-old woman reported that her phone was stolen while she was eating in Kambi Ramen House at 351 East 14th Street last Saturday at 5:37 p.m. She told police that she put her iPhone 5 on the counter in front of her and a few minutes later after she had been looking at the menu, noticed that her phone was gone. She didn’t see anyone take it and there was no video surveillance available.

WOMAN ROBBED ON BROADWAY

A 23-year-old woman reported last Wednesday that her wallet and cell phone were stolen on December 20 at 5 p.m. while she was on Broadway between West 28th and 29th Streets. She told police that while she was walking to the subway, the wallet and iPhone 5S were removed from off of the stroller in which she was pushing her son. She didn’t feel like she was bumped or jostled and she attempted to use the “Find My iPhone” app but the phone was turned off. Her wallet contained $550 in cash, her Social Security card, MetroCards and a money order.