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Man Tells NYPD He's Carrying a Lock in a Sock Because 'This Is New York'

 A man found carrying a lock wrapped in a sock told officers he had it because "this is New York," police said.
A man found carrying a lock wrapped in a sock told officers he had it because "this is New York," police said.
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DNAinfo/Danielle Tcholakian

GREENWICH VILLAGE — A man who was caught carrying a lock wrapped in a sock at the West Fourth Street subway station told police he had the weapon because "this is New York," the NYPD said.

Police originally stopped William James, 32, for selling MetroCard swipes to two officers at the subway station at Sixth Avenue and West Fourth Street at about 10:50 p.m. on Jan. 21.

He offered the officers three swipes for $5, which is below face value, and after he accepted the cash, the officers arrested him, police said.

When the officers patted him down, they found a lock in a tied-up sock in an inside pocket of his jacket.

They asked James why he was carrying it, and he replied, "This is New York," police said.

James, who had more than 35 prior arrests, pleaded guilty the next day to a charge of criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree, a misdemeanor, and was sentenced to time served.

His attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Other recent incidents in the 6th Precinct include:

► A 63-year-old serial burglar who was wanted for a series of restaurant burglaries across Lower Manhattan was nabbed after he broke into a Financial District Pret a Manger and a Greenwich Village pizzeria while police were watching, according to a criminal complaint.

Police said Emilio Maldonado, 63, was finally caught after police who were tailing him saw him breaking into Ribalta Pizza about 3:45 a.m. on Jan. 25. The officers had spotted him earlier in the night breaking into the Pret a Manger at 319 Broadway, near City Hall, and then followed him up to the Village, prosecutors said.

At Ribalta, at 48 E. 12th St., Maldonado yanked the restaurant's door open, threw a cash register to the ground and fled with items from the register and a bottle of wine, police said.

He was arrested that night and charged with burglary, grand larceny and criminal possession of stolen property in the two incidents. Police said they found he was carrying 14 credit cards with different names on them, as well as $216 in his pocket.

Police said he told officers he needed money for a plane ticket to Indiana.

Maldonado was also charged with additional counts of burglary and petit larceny for burglaries at two restaurants in the Financial District and TriBeCa, police said.

Maldonado was being held on $50,000 bail as of Wednesday and is due back in court on Jan. 30.

His attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A message left for a manager at Ribalta was not immediately returned.

► A man stole eight sticks of Dove deodorant from a CVS on Christopher Street, police said.

Police said Denys Surhayenko, 25, stuffed $63 in deodorant into his jacket at the 75 Christopher St. CVS about 1:15 a.m. on Jan. 20.

He tried to flee without paying but was stopped. Police who searched him found IDs, credit cards and a check that did not belong to him, NYPD said.

Surhayenko was charged with petit larceny. Information about his attorney was not immediately available.

► A drunk man punched a bouncer at Fat Cat when the bar's workers refused to let him in, saying he was too intoxicated to keep drinking, police said. 

Police said Eric Leinward, 25, tried to get into the 75 Christopher St. bar about midnight on Jan. 24, but the bouncer and other employees blocked the entrance because he was noticeably drunk.

When Leinward tried to force his way in, an employee grabbed him to escort him away, police said. Leinward threw several punches, hitting the bouncer in the cheekbone, leaving him bruised and swollen, police said.

Leinward was charged with assault. He was given a ticket to appear in court on Feb. 2.