Petty Perps Work Toward
Equality of the Sexes
If we won’t have fully achieved equality of the sexes until there are as many female as male perps, then, if a couple of recent incidents are any indication, we finally seem to be headed in the right direction.
On Oct. 24, at 6:40 p.m., two young ladies escorted by 10 young men visited the Padded Wagon, a moving-supply store at 1569 Second Avenue. Some of the crew distracted two store employees, asking, “How much is the duct tape?” while others helped themselves to the staff’s loosely guarded wallets and credit cards.
When their mischief was complete, the suspects fled on foot westbound on East 81st Street with the stolen wallets, credit cards and $100 in cash. The employees pursued them, but one of the hapless victims was pushed by one of the male bandits and then-perhaps to demonstrate that anything a man can do, a woman can do better-was whacked by one of the female crooks with her umbrella. Despite their efforts, the store workers failed to rescue their property.
In another incident, which occurred approximately half an hour later at Bordan Exclusive, a deli at 1615 Second Avenue, four girls and three boys visited the establishment and conducted a raid on the store’s racks. One attempts to resist the temptation to attribute certain thefts to the boys and others to the girls. However, at the risk of being branded a sexist, some of the goodies would seem to beckon more boldly to boys than girls, and vice versa.
For instance, several boxes of Macanudo cigars (25 to a box), valued at $150, were taken. The thieves, further refusing to heed the Surgeon General’s warning, also absconded with $100 worth of Phillies blunt cigars. Among the items that might leap off the shelves in a young lady’s direction were $12 worth of Dentyne Ice gum and four diet 7-Ups.
And then there were those impulse items that might fall into the unisex category. These included 10 hot smoked-beef snacks worth $8, six flash cameras valued at $60, and 15 packs of AA batteries worth $45.
When their work was done, the group fled ensemble southbound on Second Avenue. A police canvass was conducted, with negative results.
Approximately 75 demonstrators representing Local 32BJ, a union trying to organize the maintenance staff at the Chapin School (which, in their opinion, isn’t moving fast enough to embrace them), picketed the tony Upper East Side private school starting
at 2 p.m. on Oct. 22.
The police responded to the scene, erected barriers at the corner of East End Avenue and 84th Street, and placed the demonstrators behind the enclosure to prevent them from impeding the after-school pick-up of children.
The police reported that there were no incidents, with the exception of a minor contretemps instigated by the mother of a 12th grader who lives in the vicinity of Chapin. Apparently, the mom didn’t appreciate that the union had leafleted her home.
“A local resident was concerned about the safety of her daughter,” explained a police official, referring to the Chapin mom. “During the course of the demo she approached [the demonstrators] and said, ‘You’re not going to intimidate us !'”
She also expressed her displeasure to the cops. “I don’t want them there,” she reportedly told the police, referring to the picketers. “Unfortunately, it’s the United States,” observed the police official. “She wanted us to tell them to go home. She said, ‘There’s kids in the school. The demonstrators shouldn’t be there.'”
The demonstration ended at 4:30 p.m. without injuries or further incident.
If you’re the proud owner of a Lincoln Town Car, you may not want to park it on the street, at least for the moment. On Oct. 24, a 77-year-old gentleman reported to the 19th Precinct that he’d parked his car in front of 4 East 82nd Street.
When he returned to the vehicle-a black 2001 Lincoln Town Car Cartier Edition (whose posh accouterments may have included monogrammed floor mats and a gold dashboard clock)-the following morning, it was still there, but its headlights weren’t. Both headlights, valued at $600, had been removed from the vehicle.
Diplomats don’t enjoy immunity from such crimes, either. A U.N. representative from the Mongolian People’s Republic reported that his 2002 blue Lincoln Town Car was recently parked in front of his nation’s mission, at 6 East 77th Street, when unknown perps absconded with his headlights. The victim told the police he hadn’t noticed anyone suspicious in the area.
If your heart is set on a knockoff Hermès, Coach, Louis Vuitton or Prada handbag, you’ll have to do your shopping somewhere besides East 60th Street, out in front of Serendipity, the ice-cream shop whose weekend crowds-until Oct. 27, at least-doubled as a client base for a mini-kasbah of street merchants.
It was at noon on that benighted day that police swooped down on the illegal vendors from several directions. “The operation involved one sergeant and five cops,” explained Captain James Murtagh, the 19th Precinct’s executive officer. “Normally, [the vendors] run. But the officers came at them from all sides and apprehended all five,” the captain added.
The police confiscated 370 handbags, which retail for approximately $25 a bag, according to Capt. Murtagh, and charged all five street hawkers with unlicensed general vending.
Ralph Gardner Jr. may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.