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Stalker in deli
Sixth Precinct police arrested Hassau Powell, 46, around 2:30 p.m. Sat., Jan. 28, and charged him with stalking and first-degree assault on a woman in a deli at 78 W. Third St. The suspect blocked the victim’s path as she was leaving the store, closed in on her and began sniffing her body, police said. When the victim fled in terror behind the counter, the suspect screamed an obscene rape threat and lunged with his hands extended. A customer grabbed the suspect by the back of his neck. Before police arrived, the suspect told his captor, “You think you’re scared now, wait till you see this,” and simulated a gun in his pocket, according to police.
Honoring slain officers
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly and senior police officials joined about 500 active and retired officers at the Ninth Precinct in the East Village on Friday morning Jan. 25 to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the death of Officers Rocco Laurie, 23, and Gregory Foster, 22. The two officers were shot while they were on patrol in the precinct on the night of Jan. 27, 1972. No one was ever convicted of the crime but a group called the Black Liberation Army took credit for the shooting, saying it was retaliation for the killing of 29 prisoners in the Attica prison riot several months earlier.
Authorities had speculated that Laurie, who was white, and Foster, who was black, were targeted because of their specific partnership. Both had served in Vietnam as Marines.
Kelly, who was a sergeant in the precinct at the time, said he remembered responding to the scene and recalled the horror that everyone felt at the cold-blooded killing. Members of the families of Laurie and Foster attended the ceremonies in a large tent in the schoolyard across from the police station at 321 E. Fifth St.
A bite out of crime
Two suspects entered the drug store at 4 W. Fourth St. at 10:20 a.m. Thurs., Jan. 26, and lifted four large boxes of Crest White Strips, with a total value of $209, from a shelf and started to walk out without paying for them, police said. A security guard and another employee intercepted them, and during the struggle, one of the employees sustained an arm injury. Still, the suspects, Gregory Graham, 46, and Robert Peterson, 44, were held for police and charged with robbery.
Cream team busted
Two women were arrested around 7:30 p.m. Tues., Jan. 24, as they were trying to leave the Sephora shop at 21 Ninth Ave. near 13th St. in the Meatpacking District without paying for four large boxes of makeup cream, with a total value of more than $1,000. Erica Celestine, 21, and Shawankay Williams, 22, were charged with possession of stolen property.
Cap thief caught
A suspect grabbed a baseball cap from the head of a passenger on an Uptown No. 1 train around 10:30 p.m. Sat., Jan. 28, police said. When the straphanger tried to retrieve the cap, the suspect pulled a box cutter and got off the train at the Houston St. station. Police arrested Christophe Banchs, 29, at Varick and Houston Sts. and found three box cutters in his possession.
Soho cat burglars
Police are seeking suspects in a series of burglaries in Soho on Thompson, Prince, Spring and Wooster Sts. between Dec. 28 and Jan. 23. The entries were made through windows on fire escapes.
Two apartments on Prince St. were among the targets, one on Dec. 28 and the other on Jan. 23. On Dec. 28 a burglar made off with a laptop computer and a necklace valued at $500 from one Prince St. apartment. The same day a laptop was taken from a Thompson St. apartment while the resident was out. On Jan. 23 another resident of Prince St. returned home from a vacation to find that jewelry with a total value of $23,000 had been taken while she was away.
Flock of filchers
A group of between 10 to 12 males between the ages of 18 and 20 walked into Angelina’s Clothing boutique, 448 Broome St. near Broadway, around 7 p.m. Tues., Jan. 24, grabbed 22 women’s sheepskin coats from the racks and fled without paying for them, police said. The coats were valued from $950 to $1,150 each. There were no arrests.
A woman, 49, talking on her cell phone on the northeast corner at Bleecker and W. 11th Sts. around 12:30 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 26, lost it to a man who came up behind her, grabbed the phone and ran, police said. The suspect, Jeff Destine, 19, was arrested nearby and charged with larceny.
A Soho resident was talking on her cell phone while walking home around 6:35 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 26, when a mugger came up behind her in front of 111 Sullivan St., snatched her phone and then grabbed her bag and fled, police said. A passerby chased the thief and was able to retrieve the victim’s cell phone, police said.
Another woman was talking on her cell phone while at the northwest corner of Mercer and Prince Sts. around 6:30 p.m. the same day when a short young man wearing a gray jacket, blue jeans and sneakers came up behind her, grabbed the phone and fled north on Mercer St.
A photographer shooting an event at 7:30 p.m. Fri., Jan. 27, in an 11th-floor studio at 250 Hudson St. near Dominick St. asked a man he thought was an employee where he could leave one of his cameras and a lens. He returned to the designated room two hours later and discovered the camera and lens, with a total value of $4,249, had been stolen.