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Panhandler Arrested on F Train With MTA-Owned Lead Pipe and Chain: Police

By Danielle Tcholakian | January 23, 2014 4:44pm | Updated on February 6, 2014 4:10pm
 A panhandler was arrested on an F train last week for weapons possession, police said.
A panhandler was arrested on an F train last week for weapons possession, police said.
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DNAinfo/Michael Ip

WEST VILLAGE — A panhandler was arrested on an F train last week when officers discovered he was carrying a lead pipe and a heavy metal chain attached to a lock, which both belonged to the MTA, police said.

Police stopped Stanley Rawls, 54, when they caught him panhandling on a southbound F train on Jan. 16 at 1:15 p.m. in the station at 14th Street and Sixth Avenue, the NYPD said.

Police said an officer found a lead pipe in Rawls' bag, and Rawls told him some people have knives, so he has a pipe.

When the officers dug deeper into his bag and pulled out a metal chain with a lock welded to it, Rawls told them that was his "secondary weapon," according to the Manhattan District Attorney's criminal complaint.

Police discovered the lock and chain were MTA property when they found an MTA serial number on the lock.

Rawls was charged with criminal possession of a weapon.

His attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment, and the MTA referred inquiries to the NYPD.

Other notable crimes in the 6th Precinct include:

► Fernando Ortiz, 50, was arrested after police stopped his Hummer H3 at a checkpoint at 334 West Houston St. in Hudson Square about 12:05 a.m. Jan. 12. The arresting officer said his breath smelled of alcohol and his eyes were glassy. When questioned, Ortiz told the officer he had had a glass of wine, police said.

Ortiz took a Breathalyzer test twice, blowing a .138 the first time and .117 the second time, according to court documents. The legal limit for blood acohol content is .08.

Ortiz was charged with driving while intoxicated.

His attorney did not return a message left with his office.

► Alexandre Elghanayan, 27, was arrested at the same checkpoint a week later, about 1:20 a.m. on Jan. 19.

Police said Elghanayan stopped just before entering the checkpoint, pulled off into a parking lot and switched seats with the person on the passenger side of the car. Officers who stopped the vehicle said Elghanayan was slurring his words, his face was flushed and his eyes were watering. When he got out of the car, he smelled of alcohol and was unsteady on his feet and "very talkative," the arresting officer said in court documents.

Elghanayan refused a Breathalyzer at the scene, so he was taken to the police station and tested there, where he blew a .02, police said. Police discovered his license was suspended due to a drunk driving charge last year.

He was charged with aggravated unlicensed operation of a vehicle and unlicensed driving.

Stanley Cohen, Elghanayan's attorney, replied to an inquiry by saying, "It was a high speed Martian chase and we're hoping that President Putin gives him political asylum along with Snowden."

► Daniel Montes, 32, was arrested on Jan. 19 about 3 a.m. at the southeast corner of 10th Avenue and West 14th Street in the Meatpacking District when a police officer spotted him urinating in public. Police said Montes told the officer he had a knife in his front right jacket pocket. Police said the officer confiscated a gravity knife, then patted him down and found a small amount of "alleged marijuana."

Montes was charged with criminal possession of a weapon. His attorney did not return a message left on her voicemail.

► Jose Santiago, 28, was also charged with criminal possession of a weapon when an officer stopped him for public urination in front of Vbar at 225 Sullivan St., police said. He was found with a gravity knife about 2:15 a.m. on Jan. 16. His attorney declined to comment.

► Police arrested Gabriel Williams, 33, for impersonating a police officer in front of Peculier Pub at 145 Bleecker St. about 2:40 a.m. on Jan. 18. Williams is accused of showing two men, ages 52 and 57, a shield and a set of handcuffs and ordering them to get up against the wall. When the 52-year-old man challenged him, Williams took out his phone and pretended he was calling for backup, police said.

He was arrested and charged with impersonating a police officer, a felony offense, police said.

► A man was arrested after a woman accused him of stealing her iPhone and credit cards at Catch at 21 Ninth Ave., police said.

David Robles, 29, was arrested after a 25-year-old woman told police Jan. 17 at 3 a.m. that he took her bag and then stole her iPhone and three credit cards from it, police said.

Staff told police they had seen Robles rummaging through the woman's bag in the restroom, and the doorman told police he saw Robles drop the credit cards in the elevator.

Robles was arrested and charged with grand larceny.

Managers at Catch did not respond to a message. Robles' attorney did not respond to a message left on his voicemail.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story misstated Alexandre Elghanayan's blood alcohol level. It was .02.