Volume 77 / Number 40 - March 5 - 11, 2008
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Police Blotter

Village rape attempts
Police are looking for a man who attacked two women on Village streets within a quarter hour of each other on Sun., March 2, and tried to rape them.

The first victim, 30, got out of a cab by Our Lady of Pompeii School at Carmine and Bleecker Sts. at about 2:15 a.m. when the suspect attacked her from behind, knocked her down and banged her head against the sidewalk and tried to remove her pants before he fled after she fought and screamed, police said. A moment or two later, he returned, attacked her again but fled when she screamed and struggled.

The second victim, 26, was talking on her cell phone after getting out of a cab on Barrow St. between Greenwich and Hudson Sts. around 2:30 a.m. about six blocks from the first attack, when the suspect grabbed her, tore at her clothes and tried to drag her into a basement stairway, police said. She told him to take her bag but he continued assaulting her until he fled after she shouted the name of her boyfriend in a call for help.

Both victims were injured, police said. They were treated at St. Vincent’s Hospital. The suspect was described as a Hispanic man in his 20s about 5 feet 7 inches tall, 140 pounds and wearing a baseball cap and a dark, hooded pullover. Police provided a sketch of the suspect and asked the public to phone 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) with any information.

Chelsea rape
A man who identified himself as a police officer raped and robbed a masseuse in her W. 23rd St. studio/residence on Saturday evening March 1, police said.

The victim, 32, told police the suspect entered the apartment at about 6:10 p.m., representing himself as a customer, but he later said he was a police officer and threatened to arrest her if she didn’t submit to sex. When she refused, he raped her and stole $2,000 in cash before he fled, police said.

Police released a surveillance camera image of the suspect described as a Hispanic man in his 20s or 30s, 5 feet 8 inches tall and about 170 pounds, wearing a dark jacket and dark trousers.

Club killing arrest
Police arrested Eric Lee, 24, of Yonkers for the Jan. 10 shooting death of a patron of Stereo, the club at 512 W. 29th St., and charged him with murder and criminal possession of a weapon. Police tracked down Lee on Feb. 22 from information derived from the scanner that Stereo used to check the ID of patrons as they entered the club. Lee will be arraigned April 3 for the murder of Brione Schneider, 32, outside Stereo during an argument that began on the club dance floor.

Lower East Side forgery
Isiah Smith, 21, was charged with grand larceny and forgery in connection with a $95,000 check deposited in his account in the Washington Mutual bank branch at 104 Delancey St.

Smith was charged with altering a check belonging to a woman who had an account in the same bank, depositing it in his account and making five withdrawals on it between Feb. 8 and Feb. 16, according to a spokesperson for Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau. Smith was released on bail pending a May 29 criminal court appointment.

Another assault
Roger Gilchrist, 20, who was arrested on Jan. 9 for assaulting a man and menacing him with a pistol in front of 61 Grove St. at Seventh Ave. S., was free on $500 bail when he was arrested again at 1:30 a.m. Sun., Feb. 24, at the corner of Greenwich and W. 10th Sts. and charged with punching another man, age 22, in the eye after bumping into his adversary, according to a spokesperson for D.A. Morgenthau. Gilchrist was being held this week pending a March 24 court appointment to answer for both incidents.

Not a vegetarian
Police arrested Darkel Cooper, 17, on Monday afternoon Feb. 18 at Fine Fare Foods, 545 Grand St., and charged him in connection with the theft of 21 porterhouse and shell steaks. The suspect struggled when the manager of the store near Lewis St. stopped him when he tried to walk out of the place without paying for the steaks tucked in his jacket, police said. Cooper is due to answer third-degree robbery and assault charges on March 12, according to a D.A. spokesperson.

Burglary arrest
Police arrested Wayne Jandura, 45, on Feb. 15 and charged him with breaking into an office on Sixth Ave. near W. Ninth St. last June 2 and making off with paintings, framed photographs and a clock. Police said the suspect left behind a screwdriver that he used in the break-in. The screwdriver had traces of Jandura’s DNA that matched a sample on file, according to a D.A. spokesperson. Jandura was free on $25,000 bail pending a May 27 court date.

Gansevoort brawl
Police arrested Pablo Ravazzani, 42, at 1:50 a.m. Sun., Feb. 24, outside Kiss and Fly, a club at 407 W. 13th St., after a fight in which one man was knocked to the ground and repeatedly kicked in the head. Ravazzani received a desk appearance summons for a March 25 court date on an assault charge.

Arrested in extortion
Anthony Lewis, 38, and Kyle Correll, 40, leaders of an organization known as the Committee on Contract Compliance, were indicted for extortion and racketeering on Tues., Feb. 26. The indictment was the latest since September 2006 when the investigation into the committee resulted in convictions or guilty pleas and prison terms for four others involved in extorting money from construction contractors, many of them immigrants from Asia or the Middle East, according to a news release from D.A. Morgenthau’s Office.

Instead of using violence as a weapon to extort payments from minority contractors, Lewis and Correll threatened and lodged fake construction complaints with government agencies to force the victims to pay up, according to the Morgenthau statement. Lewis and Correll are to be arraigned in criminal court on April 3.

Albert Amateau

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