By Carla Zanoni
INWOOD — Police are searching for a BB gun-wielding man who robbed an Inwood resident as he walked to the subway on his way to work.
The victim, a new resident of Inwood's Park Terrace neighborhood, was accosted as he walked through Isham Park on his way to the A train at the corner of Isham Street and Broadway on Wednesday at approximately 7 a.m., police said. The attacker took $35 from the victim's bag.
The man accosted described his attacker to DNAinfo as a six-foot-tall man in his mid-20s who wore a black "hunter-style" hat with a black bulky winter coat.
Police recovered the BB gun at the scene and are testing it for fingerprints and DNA evidence, said Captain Jose Navarro of the 34th Precinct.
Several residents witnessed the aftermath of the attack and voiced frustration at the lack of security in the park.
"Every year for as long as I can remember there are strings of muggings & attempted muggings, reported & not reported," Inwood resident Scott Keating, who witnessed the aftermath of the attack, wrote in an e-mail. "It's basically a 'Muggers Delight' the layout of the quickest passageway from Park Terrace East to Broadway."
Many residents who live in the Park Terrace area of Inwood use Isham Park as a path to the A train entrance located at Isham Street and Broadway.
Last year, a spate of muggings in the park and surrounding blocks spurred the creation of the volunteer neighborhood watch group Inwood Safety Patrol. Local politicians and the police also vowed to increase patrols and look for ways to improve safety nearby. The Guardian Angels, the national civilian safety patrol group, also said they would patrol the area.
Although police warn about walking through the park at off-peak hours, residents say the two other paths — Park Terrace West and the steep staircase at 215th Street — can be just as desolate, dark and dangerous.
A security camera that was mounted in Isham Park last year by the Parks Department was removed for repairs and will be replaced as soon as weather conditions allow, according to the Parks Department.
"However, I’m advised that even if this camera was in place and working, it still would not have covered the staircase down to Broadway where the recent gunpoint robbery occurred," Phil Ambramson, a spokesman for Parks, wrote in an e-mail.