The office of District Attorney Robert Morgenthau on Nov. 13 dropped all charges against Lawrence Omansky, long-time Tribeca resident and criminal defense lawyer, who had been accused of forcing his estranged real estate partner to sign over properties and then leaving him bound in a crawl space for 28 hours last April.
Assistant district attorney Elizabeth Nochlin reportedly told Criminal Court Judge Raymond Guzman there were substantial issues with respect to the complainants own activity and credibility, just before Guzman dismissed the charges.
Lawrence Schlosser, a resident of Washington Sq. and a business associate of Omansky for 30 years, told police on April 16 that he had just worked his way free from duct tape bindings after 28 hours in a crawl space in Omanskys Chambers St. apartment. Schlosser said Omansky forced him to sign transfer documents and then bound and thrust him into the space beneath the bathroom floorboards.
But Omanskys lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, said Schlosser had a key to the apartment, a converted firehouse at 160 Chambers St. The forensic evidence did nothing more than confirm that Mr. Schlosser had been in the apartment and may have been at some time in the crawl space, Brafman said shortly after the dismissal, according to the New York Post. Omansky has been free on $100,000 bail since April.
Tribeca neighbors last April said they were shocked by the charges. Omansky, the divorced father of three daughters, was described as a dedicated Downtown Little League coach when his daughters were children.
NYCHA employee arrested
Police arrested Jamal Paugh of E. 43rd St. Brooklyn, a New York City Housing Authority employee, at the Authority headquarters 250 Broadway nears City Hall at about 7 p.m. Sun. Nov. 23 and charged him with possession of stolen property and criminal impersonation of a police officer. The suspect was using a police radio at the time of his arrest, police said.
Sexual assault reported
Police said a man grabbed a 19-year-old mother from behind as she was pushing her 2-month-old baby in a carriage at 10:30 a.m. Thurs. Nov. 20 on Houston St. near the F.D.R. Drive, said he had a gun and then led the victim into an alley where he forced her to perform oral sex.
As the suspect was leading the victim into a building, she called out to a passerby and then managed to flee with her baby. Police described the suspect as a black man between the ages of 18 and 22, between 56 and 58 tall, with kinky hair wearing a mid-thigh length gray coat. The suspect had one foot slightly crooked and tilted inward, said police.
A burglar forced open the door of El Teddys, 219 West Broadway, on Monday night Nov. 17 and made off with $300 in cash from the restaurant office, police said. The owner of a grocery store at 65 Leonard St. opened the place on Monday Nov. 17 at 6 a.m. and discovered that someone had forced open the back door and stolen $300 in cash, police said.
Police said a burglar entered a residence at 27 Desbrosses St. between Greenwich and Hudson Sts. during the day on Tues. Nov. 18 and removed an electric drill from the apartment. The resident discovered the theft at 7 p.m.
Show and tell
A real estate agent told police she had put her bag down while showing a client several apartments undergoing renovation at 95 Franklin St. at Church St. at noon on Monday Nov. 17 and when she returned to retrieve the bag at about 4:30 p.m., it was gone.
The First Precinct urges restaurant patrons to keep their handbags on their laps and not on the floor, on a seat or draped over the back of a chair, especially during the crowded holiday season. Backpacks and shoulder bags are safest when carried strap in hand, or over the shoulder on one side and under the arm, said Rick Lee, community affairs officer at the First Precinct.