Police Blotter, Week of Oct. 23, 2013

Baby abandoned in robbery
A group of shoplifters left behind a baby in a stroller when they tried to sneak candy from a Soho convenience store, police said.

The bizarre bust, first reported by DowntownExpress.com last week, was made when the child’s mother, 23, and two others were caught using the 1-year-old boy’s stroller to stash several hundred dollars worth of gum and breath mints earlier this month, according to police.

Police said the trio entered the Duane Reade store at 100 Broadway mid-day on Mon., Oct. 7.

An employee of the store, 44, told the N.Y.P.D. that he spotted the trio tucking merchandise into the pram, including $179 worth of Halls mints, $59 worth of Wrigley’s gum, $43 worth of Dentyne gum and $15 of Tic Tac packs.

He said that they tried to leave without paying at about 2:30 p.m., so he confronted them. One of the men, 20, hit the employee twice, and causing cuts to his chin and throat, police said.

The woman also tried to push the stroller into the employee in an attempt to escape, forcing him outside and down onto the sidewalk, according to the Manhattan District Attorney’s complaint. The employee was holding onto the stroller and refused to let go, the complaint said.

The woman then fled with the two men, leaving behind both the stroller and the baby, reportedly named Leon.

The three were arrested the next day and charged with robbery in the second degree and acting in a manner harmful to a child. The mother was also charged with abandonment of a child. According to news reports, she was already out on bail, after allegedly trying to smuggle an envelope of cocaine into Rikers Island in June. According to reports, she was back in Rikers Wednesday with a more substantial bail.

A spokesperson for the city’s Administration for Children’s Services said that the baby is in protective custody as they investigate the situation.

B.P.C. man stabbed
Police reported that a homeless man attacked another man with a pair of scissors in a Battery Park City playground early Thursday morning.

The 33-year-old victim was walking through a park and playground area near Asphalt Green at 212 North End Ave. He said he was on the way back to work at about 3:45 a.m. when he was stopped by a 50-year-old man who then tried to engage him in a verbal argument. During the confrontation, the man pulled out a pair of scissors and stabbed the victim four times on the back, chest and arms, according to police.

The man was treated for deep wounds and released that night, reportedly from New York-Presbyterian Lower Manhattan Hospital. Police arrested the attacker, who is charged with assault.

Locker room  thief caught
A regular case of locker room larceny turned around after the victim did some investigation of her own, with an extra dash of luck when the alleged thief returned to the scene of the crime.

A 30-year-old woman told police that she was working out at a New York Sports Club at 150 Reade St. on Wed., Oct. 16. She stowed her bag in a locker at the club at about 6 p.m. and was in the gym until 6:50 p.m., she said. When she got back to the locker room, she said she realized that two of her credit cards were missing from her wallet.

She quickly called her credit card company to cancel the cards, but was told that they had just been used at an American Apparel store at 140 West Broadway. She then called American Apparel and managed to get a description of the woman who had used her card from one of the store employees. By this point, there were two police officers on the scene to take the victim’s statement.

However, while she was making her report, the victim noticed a 25-year-old woman, matching the description of the thief, walk back into the gym. Police said the woman tried to leave when she saw the officers, but was stopped by one of them. He asked her where she had just come from. She told him she had been at American Apparel. She was asked if she bought anything and how she had paid for it. She said she had used a credit card, and upon further questioning admitted that the card was not hers.

Police arrested the woman and charged her with grand larceny. The victim’s two cards and merchandise purchased with them from American Apparel were found in her possession.

Trouble in Valley
A trio of shoplifters swiped over $1,000 in designer duds from a Tribeca boutique on Sunday.

The three people entered the Valley clothing boutique at 393 Greenwich St. at about 4:48 p.m. on Oct. 20, according to a store employee. The employee said that the two men were in their 20s and the woman was about 32 years old.

Police were notified after the three were seen walking out of the store with two items of merchandise that they had not paid for, including a $940 green DOMA jacket and a large gold Lucky Star Necklace, valued at $240. According to the report, video footage was available, and the three were last seen fleeing north on Greenwich St.

Two train thefts
A man had his phone stolen on the 2 train at Fulton St., police said, but would not have found out until much later had not another passenger alerted him. The 36-year-old victim reported to police that he had been on a Downtown express train at 6 p.m. on Wed., Oct 16, when a stranger pulled his iPhone 4S from his right jacket pocket.

He said he had no idea that he had been pickpocketed until the thief was long gone with the $950 device. Another person on the train told him that they had seen someone take the phone, but he did not get the witness’s contact for more information. The victim tried to reset his phone remotely and use the “Find My Phone” app, but it was turned off.

A woman also reported her phone stolen on a 2 train, this one northbound at the Park Place station.

The 49-year-old Brooklyn woman said that she was on an uptown train at 2:55 p.m. on Fri., Oct. 18. When the train pulled up to the Park Place platform and the doors opened, the woman said a young man, about 19, yanked her iPhone from her hands and ran out into the station. She chased after him and saw him exit the station, police said, but was unable to catch him. The woman said she did not have any further description of the man, and could not I.D. him if asked. The phone was valued at $599.

— Kaitlyn Meade

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