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Man Suffers Brain Trauma After Teen Robbers Attack Him for Phone, DA Says

By Katie Honan | October 5, 2017 2:37pm
 The teens sucker punched the victim after he bought a cell phone on Hillside Avenue, police said.
The teens sucker punched the victim after he bought a cell phone on Hillside Avenue, police said.
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NYPD

QUEENS — A 66-year-old man suffered brain trauma after two teen boys attacked him while stealing his cellphone, police said.

Jaleel Steele, 16, watched the victim, Mohammad Alam, buy a Samsung Galaxy J3 phone at MIM Wireless on Hillside Avenue, near 167th Street, in Jamaica Hills at around 6:30 p.m. on Sept. 28, NYPD officials said.

Steele then ran up to Alam, snatched the device and fled, officials said.

Alam tried to chase him down, until Steele's friend, Shyquan Kimble, also 16, punched Alam in the head, prosecutors said.

Alam's head hit the ground, knocking him unconscious and causing brain injuries that required drainage from his head to relieve pressure on his brain, according to the criminal complaint for the teens. Alam was being treated at Elmhurst Hospital, police said.

His family told the Daily News that Alam is a Bangladeshi immigrant who has spent years caring for his blind wife and is on life support at Elmhurst Hospital after the attack. 

Police arrested the pair on Oct. 2, and Steele, who lives in Jamaica, admitted to police that he "took a phone from an Indian guy with [Kimble]" before running off, the complaint said.

Kimble, from Far Rockaway, told police he cut his hair and threw his striped sweatshirt in a garbage chute after seeing himself on surveillance footage on the news, the complaint says. 

Both teens are being charged as adults and were arraigned Tuesday in Queens Criminal Court for robbery and assault.

They are due back in court Oct. 17.