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Ed Sullivan Theater Burglarized by Harlem Singer, Cops Say

By DNAinfo Staff on July 10, 2011 9:25am  | Updated on July 10, 2011 5:39pm

The Ed Sullivan Theater was the scene of a break-in Sunday morning.
The Ed Sullivan Theater was the scene of a break-in Sunday morning.
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Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

By Tim Gorta, Paul Lomax and Tom Liddy


MIDTOWN — A wannabe showman was nabbed Sunday morning after breaking into the Ed Sullivan Theater and trashing the entrance in an apparently drunken rampage, according to police.

Sources said that cops received a call for a burglary inside the famed theater, where the "Late Show with David Letterman" is taped, at 1693 Broadway, around 7 a.m.

James Whittemore, 22, of Harlem, who sings under the name Jimmy Whittemore, allegedly smashed through the glass doors, which date to 1924, and then trashed the lobby.

Sources said that he knocked over stanchions, pulled objects from the walls and made his way into an unlocked office. There, he allegedly tossed around phones and printers.

Suspect James Whittemore.
Suspect James Whittemore.
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Whittemore, who hails from Enfield, CT, and who sources said was alone at the time, was allegedly still inside when cops arrived.

He was hit with burglary and criminal mischief charges.

On his fan page, the suspect is quoted as saying: "You can believe in lots of things in the world that you think are important! Such as Politics and Religion... But the biggest belief that most people fail in, is believing in themselves!"

The American Musical and Dramatic Academy grad has performed in Atlantic City and at the Niagara Fallsview Casino in Canada, and had an upcoming national tour "Spirit of Christmas."

Among the favorite TV shows of the Boston Red Sox fan are "Dexter," "Criminal Minds" and "The Sopranos."

Things appeared to be going well for the singer in 2009.  On June 10, he tweeted: "Booked Jobs til next March!!!! So greatful [sic] for the life I live at the moment!"

And then on July 8, he wrote that he "saved a girl that was being beaten by her boyfriend today, I did this on the way home from a long rollerblading session! What a day!"

On his YouTube site, he can be heard rapping Eminem in Vegas celebrating Don Johnson's birthday.

For special skills on his resume, the tenor lists "animal sounds, variety of sound effects, harmony and falsetto specialist.

A source said the damage he allegedly caused was minor and was expected to be repaired Monday.

Tom Keaney, a spokesman for Letterman's production company, Worldwide Pants, said the set for the "Late Show" was not touched in the rampage.

Suspect James Whittemore.
Suspect James Whittemore.
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"We were notified that NYPD apprehended an intruder who gained access and vandalized the lobby of the Ed Sullivan Theater [Sunday] morning," said Keaney.

"The Late Show's set was not accessed, however, and the show will be taping as usual [on Monday]. We are grateful for the NYPD's quick and effective response."

On Sunday afternoon, a glass repair crew had arrived to fix the doors and workers were busy cleaning up.

A security guard, Manny Fray, 54, said that crews will be taping two shows on Monday. "The show must go on - right," he said.

Whittemore did not respond to calls or emails for comment.