Burglar in the house
A woman who lives on Elizabeth St. near Grand found a man in her bedroom who said he was the building super during the early hours of Fri., Jan. 9, police said. The intruder fled when the woman began calling 911. Police found Stephen Phinaze, 51, in the neighborhood with a screwdriver in his pocket and charged him with breaking into the apartment and possession of burglar tools. After booking the suspect, police also charged him with breaking into a Malaysian restaurant at 11 Allen St. near Canal St. on June 15 and making off with $200 in cash. The suspect had left a can of soda from which he had been drinking in the restaurant and his DNA matched the sample in his saliva on the can, according to a spokesperson for the Manhattan District Attorney.
Qi-Zhong Lin, 43, a suspect arrested on Jan. 4 for beating a victim with a steel pipe at Forsyth and Division Sts., was freed on $500 bail pending a Jan. 9 court appearance on a second degree assault charge, but he failed to appear. The bail was forfeited and a warrant for the arrest of the suspect, a Sunset Park, Brooklyn resident, was issued on Jan. 10, according to a spokesperson for the Manhattan District Attorney. He returned to court on Jan. 13, and his next court date is April.
The victim was handing out fliers and business cards not too far from the area where Chinatown’s commuter and intra-city buses line up. The suspect was also hit by a friend of the victim who came to the defense, according to the D.A. The suspect, whose face was bloodied, was pictured but not identified in last week’s Downtown Express.
Robbery suspect arrested
Police arrested a man on Sat., Jan. 10 and charged him with the attempted robbery of a woman in front of her third floor apartment on Ludlow St. at 3:30 a.m. Dec. 20. Joseph Garcia, 34, a resident of East Harlem, was charged with following the victim into her building, up the stairs to her apartment and grabbing her handbag. A struggle ensued and both the suspect and the woman fell to the floor but her screams brought other tenants to the scene and the suspect fled without the bag.
Knock-off knock out
Hassa Ibrahim, 28, arrested on the northwest corner of Greene and Canal Sts., around 12:30 p.m. Mon., Dec. 29 for selling counterfeit DVDs and wallets, punched one of the arresting officers in the face and fled, police said. When the cops caught him he flailed his arms and refused to be handcuffed, police said. He was charged with assaulting a police officer and his merchandise case had 477 counterfeit DVDs, police said.
Forced to ATM
A stranger approached a visitor from Akron, Ohio on Murray St. near Church St. at 6:45 a.m. Sun., Jan. 4 and demanded money, police said. The victim gave up $20 and said it was all he had, but the stranger grabbed his wallet, pulled a bottle out of his pocket and forced the victim to go to an ATM. “I have a knife and I’ll cut you. I don’t care if I go to jail,” the stranger said, showing a knife in his waistband. The victim drew $60 from the ATM but the suspect forced him to draw $420 more at another ATM, police said. The suspect, described as a black man with a goatee, 5’9” and 145 pounds and wearing a gray jacket and black gloves, fled with the money, police said.
A patron of Cafe Seaport, 150 William St., got into an argument with another patron who hit him over the head with an unknown object around 8:45 p.m. Fri., Jan. 9, police said. The suspect, described as a white man in blue jeans, work boots and wearing a white sweatshirt, fled. Police said a witness reported seeing the suspect enter another restaurant on John St. at William a block away.
Shoe shop break-in
A burglar broke into Aerosole Shoes, 205 Front St., near Fulton sometime after 7 p.m. Fri., Feb 9 and made off with $300 from the register before the store reopened the next morning, police said.
— Albert Amateau