Volume 80, Number 2 | June 9-15, 2010
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Police Blotter

Found alive
An East Village resident who was missing for four days after he left a party in Dutchess County, N.Y., on July 1 was found alive Thurs., June 3, severely injured near his wrecked BMW about 40 miles south of Albany.

Thomas Wopat-Moreau, 22, an E. 11th St. resident, lost control of his car on the Taconic State Parkway after he left a party around 3 a.m. in East Fishkill, N.Y., and landed in the tall grass of a swamp, where he was found barely able to move and covered with insects. State Police were able to locate him by tracing his cell phone signal. Wopat-Moreau was taken to a hospital in Albany where he was said to be in satisfactory condition.

Soho rape
A man who engaged a woman in conversation on a Soho street around 2 a.m. Thurs., June 3, and brought her to the roof of his building at 48 Mercer St., where they talked some more, choked and raped the victim when she tried to leave. The victim told police the suspect asked her where she was going, and when she replied, “Home,” he said, “No, sit down,” pushed her into a chair and choked her.

The victim said the suspect pulled off her underpants and then raped her while choking her. After he let her go, he followed her to the street and offered to give her money if she didn’t tell anyone about it, police said. The victim, 33, called 911 from her home and was taken to Bellevue Hospital. Police arrested John Thomas, 30, and charged him with rape.

Teen robbery arrests
A Queens boy, 15, told police a stranger reached into his left pants pocket and took his iPod while he was on Seventh Ave. South between Morton and Commerce Sts. on Wednesday afternoon June 2. The victim followed the suspect demanding his iPod back, and continued to follow him to the Christopher St. subway station and onto a southbound train, where he struggled with the suspect. Police arrested the suspect, also 15, at the Houston St. station and charged him with robbery.

In another case, police arrested a boy, 13, for snatching a cell phone at 10:15 a.m. Mon., June 7, from a woman at the intersection of Canal and Mercer Sts. The suspect asked the victim what time it was and snatched the instrument from her right hand when she consulted it for the time. Because of the suspect’s young age, The Villager chose not to print his name.

10 months in jail for Jewels
Joel Pakela, 40, of 18 Bleecker St., a.k.a. L.E.S. Jewels, was sentenced to 10 months in jail on June 1 after pleading guilty in April to beating a man whom he had met at The Urge, a gay bar on Second Ave. near E. Second St. Pakela was invited by the victim to his Mercer St. apartment on April 1, where he punched him and broke his orbital bone. Pakela previously served eight months in jail during 2007 and 2008 for an aggressive-panhandling incident on Avenue A when he choked a man and raised his cane at him in a threatening manner. According to the Department of Corrections, his projected release date is Oct. 20, 2010.

City van cell swipe
A Department of Transportation employee parked his van in front of 489 Broadway at Broome St. at 10:30 a.m. Mon., June 7, to fix a traffic light. When he and his assistant returned to the van, they discovered that a thief had made off with two cell phones, police said.

Cell-phone snatch
A woman who lives in Midtown was shopping on Canal St. at 1:15 p.m. Fri., June 4, when a man came from behind her at the corner of Broadway and snatched her cell phone. A police officer saw the incident and apprehended the suspect, Shamere Thomas, 18, after a short chase and charged him with grand larceny.

Carmine St. break-in
A woman resident of an apartment at 5 Carmine St. at the corner of Sixth Ave. was sleeping at 4:45 a.m. Wed., June 2, when she was awakened by a burglar opening her bedroom door, police said. After the suspect and an accomplice fled, the victim, 30, discovered her desktop computer, including the hard drive, a handbag and wallet containing $100 cash, ID and credit cards had been taken.

The suspects tried to make withdrawals from automated-teller machines at Third St. and Thompson St. and attempted to use a card to charge a cab ride, police said. The suspects, Joseph Cowden, 18, and Harry Dervisevic, 17, were arrested on June 4 and charged with burglary.

Village construction job
The employees of a construction site at 61 Bank St. near Bleecker St. told police on Tues., June 1, that burglars had entered the site during the Memorial Day weekend, broken open the front door and the site’s equipment box and made off with electric powered tools valued at $7,850. The alarm system at the site did not go off, police said.

Hotel pane rains down
A pane of glass from the 19-story Standard Hotel, which straddles the High Line at 848 Washington St., fell onto the elevated park around 4:30 p.m. Sun., June 6, when a gust of high wind blew it down. No one was injured but a witness told The Villager that shards of broken glass hit his shoes. The Department of Buildings closed the section of the park between the Gansevoort St. entrance and 14th St. on Monday morning but reopened it later that day. The city did not say what floor the glass came from but a witness said it appeared to have been a glass panel from a banister on the roof of the building.

Guilty in Soho theft
James Jimenez was found guilty by a Criminal Court jury on June 4 of stealing a $2,000 handbag from Kirsten Dunst from the Soho Grand penthouse she was occupying in August 2007 while shooting “How to Lose Friends and Alienate People.” An accomplice, Jarrod Beinerman, pleaded guilty earlier to the theft at the hotel, at 310 West Broadway between Grand and Canal Sts.

Albert Amateau


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