Police Blotter

Synagogue break-in
Three suspects were arrested inside the historic Beth Hamedrash Hagadol synagogue on Sun., Oct. 9 and charged with stealing copper memorial plates from the locked house of worship at 60 Norfolk St. Rabbi Mendel Greenbaum was checking on the building when he spotted the intruders and called police. Jose Cruz, 33, was being held in lieu of $20,000 bail; Ambioris Gonzalez, 23, was being held in lieu of $10,000 bail and Carlos Rodriguez, 39, was being held in lieu of $15,000 bail. Cruz was walking out of the building when he was arrested while the other two defendants were discovered under a table, police said.

A defense lawyer said that Rodriguez was homeless and had walked in when he saw the door was open and that Gonzalez was sleeping in the building because his wife threw him out of their house in Brooklyn after an argument. The complaint filed with the Manhattan District Attorney charges the suspects with removing the copper memorial plates from the wall and stacking them, presumably ready o be taken away. The lock securing a chain on the front door of the synagogue had been cut and police said they found a bolt cutter, a crowbar and other tools in the building when the suspects were arrested. A menorah, scroll, ark, prayer book and other items used in worship were also damaged, the complaint says.

L.E.S. sexual assault
A woman in her 50s was walking on Attorney St. near Delancey St. pulling a wheeled suitcase behind her around 7 a.m. Sun., Oct. 9 when a suspect approached her from behind and sexually assaulted her before she fought him off, police said.

The suspect was described as a black man, between 20 and 22, 5’8” and a skinny build.

Bag snatch try
Two suspects approached a Staten Island woman, 39, walking on Broadway at Worth St. around 3:15 p.m. Fri., Oct. 14, and one of them said, “Give me your bag,” police said. The thief began to pull the victim’s bag off her shoulder and pushed her to the ground. The accomplice pulled a box cutter and tried to cut the strap, but failed and the pair fled without taking anything. The victim sustained head neck and arm injuries.

SoHo burglary
A woman, 51, left her home at 121 Wooster St. around 4:30 p.m. Wed., Sept. 28 and returned at 9:30 p.m. to find her rear window open and the window bars kicked in, police said. Her jewelry box was rifled and items were stolen along with a laptop computer.

L.E.S. Lady thief
A female thief has been lifting bags from patrons at Katz’s Delicatessen on Houston at Ludlow St. and other eateries on the Lower East Side, police said. On Sept. 30, she was recorded on a surveillance tape while paying her bill and glancing back at the diners before hurrying out with a stolen bag. Described as a heavy-set black woman, between 40 and 50 years old, she is believed to have taken a bag from a patron of Clinton Baking Company earlier. She is also reported to have stolen a bag from a customer at Barramundi Bar, 67 Clinton St. Information on the suspect should be reported to Crime Stoppers 800-577-TIPS (8577).

Bergtraum student murder
Three men were charged on Tues., Oct. 18 in connection with the Sept. 11 shooting death of Tayshana Murphy, a Harlem resident and senior basketball star at Murry Bergtraum High School in Lower Manhattan.

Tyshawn Brockington, 21, and Robert Cartagena, 20, were indicted on charges of second degree murder, first degree burglary and criminal possession of a weapon. Terique Collins, 24, was charged with providing the murder weapon to Brockington and Cartagena.

According to the indictment, Brockington and Cartagena were seen in possession of a gun near the Grant Houses and were overheard saying they were going to “smoke” someone from the Housing Authority complex. Murphy and one or two male friends fled when they saw the two suspects approaching and fled to the fourth floor of a building. She was heard to shout down a stairwell, “I’m not with them,” just before she was shot with three 9 mm bullets. Cartagena was identified in the indictment as the shooter.

Sticky dog walker
A man who falsely told a security guard at 15 Broad St. that he was a dog-walker went to the basement of the building poured glue on a table and the floor, police said. Gabriel Castillo, 23, was arrested after building security identified him as the suspect and he was charged with burglary.

Follow and slam
A man employed at 200 Rector Pl. in Battery Park City told police that someone from the building followed him shouting when he left work at 9:40 a.m. Wed., Oct. 12. When the victim hailed a cab on West St. at Albany St., his adversary slammed the cab door on his foot, according to police.

— Albert Amateau

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