Man Jumps Out of Freezer at Sarabeth’s During Brunch; Dies Later at Hospital

A man jumped out of a freezer at Sarabeth’s restaurant on Amsterdam Avenue and 80th Street on Sunday and began attacking employees, police said. The man was subdued by employees at the restaurant, and had a heart attack during the scuffle, police told the Times.

The man shouted, “Away, Satan!” and grabbed the knife after an employee opened the walk-in freezer at Sarabeth’s on the Upper West Side around 11 a.m., the police said. Workers who heard the commotion came and wrestled the man to the floor and took away the knife, according to the police.

During the brunch-time struggle, the man lost consciousness and went into cardiac arrest, the police said. He was rushed to St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center, where he was pronounced dead.

“The man “made statements consistent with him being mentally unstable,'” police told one of our tipsters (who happens to be a journalist). “He is from Arizona. Police don’t know when he went into the freezer, why he is in NYC, if he’s a tourist or not.”

The restaurant was evacuated, with crime tape in front of the entrance  The 54-year-old man was from Arizona. Police did not immediately release his name.

Update, Monday morning: The man has been identified as Carlton Henderson of Cave Creek, Arizona.

Photos by Pam.

NEWS | 28 comments | permalink
    1. FreezeDance says:

      You can’t make this sh#t up. Just when I thought I’d heard it all…

    2. Sid says:

      I’ll ask the question on everyone’s mind: How did he get into the freezer?!

    3. Margaret says:

      With the caveat that the NYPD accounts have been shown to be inaccurate, incomplete, or misleading way too many times, I’m extremely disturbed by this and I hope we don’t underplay what is reported to have happened.

      A man hiding in a freezer with a knife is no joke. That could have easily been someone’s home, and Sarabeths employees shouldn’t have to deal with this either. I get that a Sunday in August is a time when many electeds are not actually in the city, but I was surprised and disappointed that (to my knowledge) not a single elected showed up or communicated about this very serious UWS story. Nobody lives in NYC without thinking of Kitty Genovese regularly. Definitely not me. We convince ourselves those days are long past, but yesterday – an intruder lunging out of a freezer with a knife – didn’t feel that way.

      • robert says:

        You seem surprised that the police didn’t personally give you a private briefing. Sometimes they purposely hold back information while they conduct their investigation. Which they were doing a suspect in this incident was a suspect to a double murder in Boston dating back to 1988, which he was indicted for late last year. He also was part of as large violent drug-trafficking ring based in San Diego that had extended to other parts of the country, including Boston.
        So before you jump on NYPD for not always immediately making ever detail of a crime public, stop and think.

        • Margaret says:

          When there is a break-in at a business on my block that involves an intruder lurking with a knife, yes I certainly expect community outreach. When a man dies, I think it should come from electeds.

          Robert, I see you chose to insult me instead for expressing these concerns. The condescending attitude is totally par from the course from you, (if you wanted me to think you personally are a complete and utter jackass, you succeeded a long time ago) but what you wrote is a message that the police are hostile to members of the community and our legitimate concerns. Stop and think yourself whether that was useful to convey.

          If your goal is to convince people the cops are hostile, you’re doing a great job.

    4. BillyNYC says:

      How freaky can this get! A 54yo man jumps out of Freezer after being in there for two hours than attacking a staffer saying… “Get away from me Satan” and then dies of a heart attack… how did he get into the freezer without the restaurant knowing it???
      That is just as weird as the homeless guy shooting himself in the leg at Zabar’s coffee shop two years ago.

    5. EricUWS says:

      Are you certain that he wasn’t yelling, “Away, Seitan,” lamenting about the addition of vegan food to the Sarabeth’s menu?

    6. Yael says:

      This is so profoundly disturbing. OMG

    7. Gary Bilbert says:

      A google search revealed that Carlton Henderson from AZ was arrested last year for a double murder in Boston in 1988 that was cold for almost 30 years. How he then ended up in Sarabeth’s freezer is bizarre. Seems like its the same person, weird stuff…

    8. nycgal says:

      If you Google his name, it appears he was wanted for a double murder in Boston last year and arraigned. This is serious, how is he free here in NYC?

    9. AC says:

      Guy probably had dinner; paid his bill; and was able to hide somewhere in the restaurant (hoping to hit the proceeds over night). As opening neared he was most likely startled and rushed into the nearest place to hide (walk-in freezer). Upon being discovered, he tried to fight his way out. Apprehended around the corner at 267-269.

    10. Trannyboy says:

      When you Google “Carlton Henderson and Cave Creek,” apparently he involved in double murder and arrested last year.

    11. Keith says:

      Is this the same guy who was arrested last year for a double murder in Boston in 1988?

    12. Westside Lovergirl says:

      So that’s why they weren’t delivering yesterday.

    13. Young Sally says:

      Perhaps he was a time traveler and the freezer at Sarabeth’s was where he was beamed into – or whatever. If it is – I’d like to exit this dystopian place – albeit without the heart attack.

    14. Scott says:

      Well it’s been confirmed this is the same Henderson extradited to Boston for murder. I’d say Suffolk County DA Dan Conley has some ‘splainin to do. Henderson was supposedly held without bail.

    15. NYWoman says:

      “A double-murder suspect who had just been released from a Boston jail was hiding in the freezer at popular Upper West Side restaurant Sarabeth’s in Manhattan during the busy Sunday brunch rush.”

    16. Jill says:

      This is fabulous

    17. Scott says:

      I wonder if Sarabeth’s can sue the Massachusetts judge who released this monster. They should. I’d ask for compensation for lost revenue and any physical or mental injuries suffered during the attack.

      BTW it’s judge Janet Sanders, Massachusetts Superior Court.

      • Daniel says:

        @Scott that’s the spirit. Sue away.

        Sarabeth’s will be fine and continue to serve clients the boring and curated experience that much of the area takes pride in these days.