West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933
Volume 77, Number 18 | October 3 - 9, 2007

Police Blotter

Hit-and-run death
A hit-and-run driver who struck and killed a woman as she was crossing the Bowery at E. Fourth St. at 4 a.m. Sun., Sept. 30, was arrested later that day at his parents’ home in Forest Hills, Queens, police said.

The victim, Julia Thomson, 24, a native of Edinburgh, Scotland, who was living on the Lower East Side, was crossing the street after showing a friend from England some neighborhood nightlife, when a black Mercedes Benz going south at about 50 miles per hour struck her and sped on, according to witnesses. She was declared dead on arrival at St. Vincent’s Hospital.

Police found the car later in Forest Hills with a side mirror dangling, a dent in the front end, the passenger-side windshield smashed and blood on a headlight, according to reports. Police arrested Tenzing Bhutai, 21, at his parent’s home on 73rd Rd. in Forest Hills and charged him with driving his father’s car while intoxicated and leaving the scene of an accident. Bail was set at $75,000 and he is to appear in court on Oct. 18.

Arrest in sex robberies
Police arrested a Queens man at First Avenue and E. 10th St. and charged him with a series of six incidents of sex abuse and robbery in the East Village from July 7 until just before he was arrested at 5:10 a.m. Fri., Sept. 28.

The suspect, Luis Garcia-Ponce, 23, of Jamaica, Queens, was being held this week pending notice of grand-jury action on cases involving female victims who were ambushed in their lobbies or on the street near their homes, assaulted, sexually abused and robbed.

Police said that in the suspect’s messenger bag they found a cell phone belonging to the sixth victim, who was attacked from behind on the street at 4:40 a.m. Fri., Sept. 28, on First Avenue at E. 10th St., knocked to the ground and robbed.

A half-hour earlier, the fifth victim was attacked from behind in front of 515 E. 12th St. by a suspect who pressed his genitals to her back, grabbed her breast and fled, police said.

Police also found in the defendant’s bag a BlackBerry and credit cards belonging to the fourth victim, who was attacked at about 4:40 a.m. Sat., Sept. 22, in the street in front of her building at 685 E. Ninth St. near Avenue C.

The third victim told police she was followed into the vestibule of her building at 524 E. 11th St. between Avenues A and B at 4:05 a.m. Fri., Sept. 21, by a suspect who threw her to the ground, tried to pull off her underwear, touched her thigh, demanded a kiss and kissed her lips and neck.

The second victim told police that a suspect followed her into the lobby of her building at 508 E. 12th St. at about 4:20 a.m. Fri., July 13, put her in a chokehold, pressed her to the floor, kissed her and put his finger in her vagina, took her money and fled.

The first victim was followed into the lobby of her building at 224 First Ave. between 13th and 14th Sts. at about 3:45 a.m. Sat., July 7, by a suspect who grabbed her breast and grabbed her crotch and fled.

Police said they were investigating whether Garcia-Ponce was involved in two other sex-abuse robbery incidents in the past three months south of Houston St.

Last week, The Villager reported that a police spokesperson said the Sept. 21 incident was not part of the crime pattern.

Groper in bus
A 12-year-old girl told police she was on the No. 11 bus in Chelsea on her way to school at 8:15 a.m. on Tues., Sept. 25, when a man standing next to her rubbed his hand on her buttocks. She told him to stop, but he continued until she moved away from him, police said. When she got off the bus at the last stop in the Village, the man did, too, but he walked away from her, police said. The girl described the suspect as being 5 feet 10 inches tall, cross-eyed and walking with a cane because of a crooked leg.

Car, motorcycle stolen
A resident of Mercer St. told police she parked her 2004 Porsche Cayman on Mercer St. near Howard St. at 7:30 p.m. Wed., Sept 19, and when she went back to the spot at 8 a.m. the next day she discovered it had been stolen. She valued the car at $50,000. A New Jersey man, 30, who parked his 2004 Acura motorcycle on Wooster St. between Spring and Prince Sts. at 8:30 p.m. Fri., Sept. 21, found it had been stolen when he returned a few hours later.

Burglar’s haul
A man who left his fourth-floor apartment at 16 Hudson St. at 2 p.m. Mon., Sept. 24, returned at 3:15 p.m., found the front door damaged and a laptop, $1,500 in cash and various antiques and household items with a total value of $70,000 had been stolen, police said. Witnesses told police they had seen a stranger in the building between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m.

Caught in their own web
Jarrod Beinerman and James Jimenez, both 33, pleaded not guilty on Mon., Oct. 1, to an Aug. 9 burglary of a penthouse suite in the Soho Grand hotel on W. Broadway near Grand St. The defendants were charged with taking a bag with a wallet, ID and credit cards of a guest who was out at the time. A Daily News item said the guest whose bag was taken was Kirsten Dunst, the lead actress in the “Spiderman” film series.

Arson son
Police arrested Mark Jones on Fri., Sept. 28, on a charge of arson for setting fire to the door of his mother’s apartment on Allen St. near Stanton St. on Saturday afternoon Sept. 15. Jones, 20, was charged with second-degree arson and was being held pending an Oct. 15 court date.

Albert Amateau

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