Crime Watch

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Variety Varmints

A gang of shoplifters assaulted a local variety store clerk. At 1:50 p.m. on Tuesday, May 16, four perpetrators entered the Thiam variety store at 906 Amsterdam Ave. and asked to see some clothing items. When a store clerk walked around the counter to help the quartet, the four started to punch the clerk repeatedly, causing him to lose two teeth and cutting him. One of the thugs also displayed a knife. The quartet then removed merchandise before fleeing southbound on Amsterdam and then westbound on West 104th Street. No value was listed for the stolen goods.

Bottle Battle

A man was arrested after he hit and bit a liquor store employee. At 3:29 p.m. on Thursday, May 18, a 23-year-old man entered the Roma Wines & Liquors store at 726 Amsterdam Ave., grabbed a bottle of high-end hooch, and left the store without paying for it. An employee attempted to stop the shoplifter, but the latter punched him in the face. The intrepid employee held on to the perpetrator, who then bit the employee’s left thigh before fleeing the scene. The employee called police and identified the robber in the neighborhood at 3:40 p.m. Devante Scott was arrested at 3:47 p.m. at 44 West 96 St. and charged with robbery, grand larceny, criminal trespass, among other counts. The merchandise was a 1.75-liter bottle of Hennessy, valued at $148. The employee refused medical attention.

Shogun Showdown

A good Samaritan thwarted a bike theft. At 8:36 p.m. on Friday, May 19, a 19-year-old man saw a 43-year-old man stealing his bicycle at 568 Amsterdam Ave. The thief tried to ride away northbound on Amsterdam when he was approached by another individual, who intervened to stop him from taking the bike. The alleged thief, later identified as Etzer Fiote, punched the man. Fiote, though, was arrested a few minutes later. He faces charges of felony assault, dangerous drugs and weapons, disorderly conduct, and additional counts. The bicycle stolen and recovered was a Shogun priced at $200. The good Samaritan refused medical attention.


At 10:24 p.m. on Tuesday, May 16, a woman called police requesting that they remove a 32-year-old woman who was staying without permission or authority in an illegal SRO inside her girlfriend’s apartment at 166 West 87th St. Police officers responded to the call and found the interloper hiding in a shopping cart in the building’s elevator. As the two officers approached the alleged intruder, later identified as Veronica Bennett, she began resisting arrest, saying, “I’m not getting handcuffed.” She then began kicking and pushing the officers. She kicked one of the officers. She also shoved and kicked the other officer. Bennett was arrested at 9:24 p.m. and charged with felony assault on peace officers, criminal mischief and trespass, and more. The two officers were taken to St. Luke’s for evaluation.

bar assault

A local bar patron may want to choose his acquaintances more carefully. At 2 a.m. on Saturday, February 18, a 36-year-old man came out of a bar at 924 Amsterdam Ave. to have a smoke when a 38-year-old male acquaintance approached him and began arguing. When the younger man tried to reenter the bar, the older man cut him in the back of his head. When the younger man turned around, the older men also cut him on his lower lip using a box cutter. Vantroy Sanchez was arrested at 5:53 p.m. on May 21 at 413 Central Park West and charged with assault, criminal mischief and trespass, dangerous drugs and weapons, disorderly conduct, harassment, and other charges. The incident was not reported to police until May 21.

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