Woman Fights Off Bike-Riding iPhone Robber on Essex Street

By Nicole Bode on December 23, 2011 3:27pm 

MANHATTAN — Police are searching for a would-be mugger who allegedly punched a woman in the face and chest in a bid to steal her iPhone on the Lower East Side — but fled on his bike empty-handed after the victim put up a fight.

The 25-year-old victim was standing in front of 167 Essex St. between East Houston and Stanton streets at 11:30 p.m. Dec. 10 when she was approached from behind by the suspect, police said.

He attacked her and then tried to snatch her iPhone from her right hand, police said. But the woman put up a fight, prompting the suspect to flee on his bike toward Houston Street, officials said.

The suspect is described as being in his 30s and standing 6-foot-1. He was last seen wearing a black and orange hat.

This is the latest in a string of cases in which thieves have sought out iPhones. In one spate of incidents near Columbia University, a mugger allegedly approached victims and demanded their cellphones, then returned them if they weren't iPhones, police said.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).  The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.

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