Muggers Rob Teen of BlackBerry on Upper West Side, Police Say
By DNAinfo Staff on December 20, 2011 12:53pm
By Sonja Sharp and Patrick Hedlund
UPPER WEST SIDE — A teen was robbed of his BlackBerry in broad daylight on the Upper West Side Tuesday morning by three suspects who threatened him with a gun, police said.
The robbers approached the 17-year-old male near the corner of West 68th Street and Amsterdam Avenue Tuesday morning, threatening him with a firearm before taking his BlackBerry phone and a set of headphones, the NYPD said.
The victim was not injured in the incident, and one of the suspects was arrested a short time later after fleeing from cops, police and witnesses said.
One of the alleged perpetrators tried to escape into a parking garage on West 58th Street following the mugging, leading police on a chase through the multi-story structure, witnesses said.
Staff at the garage, located on West 58th Street between 10th and 11th avenues, said a man came dashing through the building shortly after 9 a.m. followed by about 10 police officers.
Employees said the man managed to make it to the garage’s third floor before cops apprehended him.
“They led him through the garage and put him in the car,” said Kay Yoo, 42, who works at Columbus Place Cleaners next to the building and saw the chase unfold.
“Suddenly there were so many police, it was so scary," she added. "That never happens here.”
The alleged robbery comes as a spate of smartphone muggings have gripped the city, including incidents on the Upper East Side and near Columbia University police said.
One alleged mugger near Columbia targeting iPhone owners even refused to accept other smartphones like BlackBerries, instead preferring to steal only the expensive Apple devices, police added.