Volume 74, Number 8 | June 23 - 29, 2004

Police Blotter

Villager photo by Robert Arihood

Knockout of the week
An altercation outside Doc Holliday’s bar at Ninth St. and Avenue A last Friday night left this man unconscious. He was strapped to a gurney and removed to a local hospital. According to a witness, after being asked to leave the bar, the man took a swing at the bouncer. It was unclear if it was the bouncer who knocked him out, however. Asked about the incident, David McWater, the bar’s owner, who was elected chairperson of Community Board 3 Tuesday night, said, “That sounds like a lot of hype to me. I don’t think anything like that happened.”

Probe East Village murder
Police are offering a $2,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the killer of a homeless woman whose nude body was found June 6 in a trunk left next to a vacant lot on 13th St. near Third Ave.

The victim, Myrna Gonzalez, 45, was choked to death by hand, according to detectives investigating the case. A former resident of the Bronx, Gonzalez had been frequenting the E. 14th St. area for about a month before her murder and had been seeking treatment for drug addiction in the neighborhood.

She signed herself in at the Beth Israel drug treatment center on May 27 and left the center on June 3. “Here was a woman trying to get her life together and some person killed her,” remarked the Ninth Precinct’s Det. Larry Young, who is investigating the case.

Gonzalez, 5 ft. 5 in. tall, was found in a crouched position in a green steamer trunk at 4:24 p.m. Sun. June 6 by Edward Jones, a homeless man who frequents the neighborhood rummaging for salvageable trash, police said.

The trunk, which has brass corners and leather handles at the ends, was standing on end on the sidewalk with its hasps closed when Jones found it, police said. Jones, who is not a suspect, was shocked and leaped back with a shout when he opened the trunk. Police were summoned by passersby, who phoned 911.

Police are seeking witnesses who may have seen Gonzalez alive in the neighborhood. They are also seeking more information about the trunk, which was reported seen at the site the night before the body was discovered. Witnesses are asked to phone 1-800-577-TIPS or the Ninth Precinct detective squad at 212-477-7809.

Sentence Perez slayer
The family and friends of Armando Perez, the East Village activist and co-founder of the former CHARAS-El Bohio who was killed four years ago in a fight in a Long Island City parking lot, were angry and disappointed at the 10-year prison sentence imposed last week on one of his confessed killers.

Shaguye Colbert, 29, pleaded guilty earlier to taking part in Perez’s beating death and received the 10-year sentence as part of a plea deal on June 16 from State Supreme Justice Robert Hanophy.

His accomplice, Malik Hill, previously pleaded guilty as part of the plea deal and is to be sentenced next month to eight years in prison.

The April 4, 1999, killing occurred when Perez, who was visiting his wife in the Ravenswood Houses, went to move his car at 4 a.m. and found Colbert seated on the hood and Hill nearby. In the fight that ensued, Perez, 51, was left severely beaten on the street. He died later at a nearby hospital.

Perez’s wife, Marianne, was not at the sentencing last week, but his son, Ali Armando, 28, had come from Florida to the Queens courtroom to urge the judge to scrap the plea deal and impose a stiffer sentence. Colbert apologized to Perez’s family and friends at the June 16 sentencing, but he did not look at them.

Armed patrols
Heavily armed police anti-terrorism patrols made appearances in the West Village and the Lower East Side on Father’s Day.

Around 1 p.m. on Sun. June 20, a patrol in riot helmets and jackets appeared on E. Houston St. between Allen and Orchard Sts. and maintained a presence for about an hour, neighbors said. The police would not say why they were there. Around 4 p.m. a similar patrol appeared on Hudson St. between Christopher and W. 10th Sts., again perplexing residents.

For more than a year, Hercules units armed with assault rifles and protective gear have been making unannounced patrols at randomly selected locations throughout the city. Similar Atlas units make more regular patrols around transportation facilities, landmarks, houses of worship and other potential terrorist targets.

The patrols have an unsettling affect on many people. “It made me feel a lot less secure to think of someone firing one of those guns and bullets flying all over the street,” said Barbara Rosenthal, a resident of Westbeth in the West Village. “I don’t think there’s going to be any terrorism in Greenwich Village on Father’s Day,” she added.

Stamp collectors
Police arrested a Texas couple on June 4 at a Flatiron District auction house and charged them with possession of rare collectible postage stamps valued at more than $50,000, which had been stolen from a Houston, Tex., stamp dealer, according to the office of Manhattan District Attorney Robert M. Morgenthau.

The suspects, Casey Guillory, 32, and Jennifer Taylor, 24, were arrested at H.R. Harmer Inc., a stamp auction house at 3 E. 28th St., the day after they first appeared at the establishment offering to sell rare stamps.

An employee, who recognized some of the stamps as part of a missing million-dollar collection stolen from a Houston dealer about a month ago, phoned police after he told the pair to return with the stamps the following day.

Police arrested the couple and executed a warrant search of their room at the Royalton Hotel in Midtown. They recovered more stamps from the missing collection, including two rare Amelia Earhart stamps worth $8,000 each.

Guillory, of Conroe, Tex., is being held in lieu of $100,000 bail and Taylor, of Dallas, is held in lieu of $10,000 bail. They were indicted June 18 and are to be arraigned June 24.

Indicted in ATM robbery
Martin Hobbs, 40, was indicted on June 18 in connection with the May 30 robbery of three women inside the Chase branch ATM vestibule on W. 23rd St. at Sixth Ave. Hobbs is charged with robbing two women who were at different machines at 4 p.m., and taking $15 from one and $20 from the other. He is also charged with attempting to rob another woman, saying he had a gun, at the same branch at 10:55 p.m. the same day. A 13th Police Precinct detective investigating the earlier incident made the arrest at the scene.

Direct deposit
An employee at the Soho Grand Hotel, 310 W. Broadway, was charged with third-degree grand larceny on June 3, for keeping a total of $18,221 that was direct-deposited to her account by mistake during the previous seven months, according to the office of District Attorney Robert M. Morgenthau.

Tasha Bosmond, 31, started getting the direct deposits of a fellow Soho Grand employee as well as her own on Oct. 30 of last year and failed to tell her employer, according to the charge. Neil Scott, director of Human Resources of the Soho Grand, filed the grand-larceny complaint. Bosmond was released on her own recognizance.

Dip on Canal
A Soho resident was walking at Canal St. and the corner of Mercer St. at 11:40 a.m. Mon. June 14 when she felt a tug on her bag and looked down to find it open, police said. Missing was $30 in cash.

Soho mugging
A man, 33, walking on Prince at Thompson Sts., became the victim of a mugger who punched him in the head and knocked him to the pavement shortly before 6 a.m. Wed. June 16, police said. The thief, described as a black man, about 6 ft. 2 in., bald and weighing about 180 lbs., took $300 from the victim and fled on foot.

Short ride
A thief broke into a 2001 Audi parked near the northeast corner of Sixth Ave. and Charlton St. on June 15, broke the ignition cylinder, drove half a block and then abandoned the car, which was recovered the following day, police said. The thief made off with a black leather briefcase and one of the car headlights.

Albert Amateau

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