Alleged Assailant in Scaffolding Attack Arrested; It’s a Woman

By Carol Tannenhauser

The person who police believe came from behind, and savagely punched a 57-year-old woman in the face last Thursday night in the scaffolding tunnel on Amsterdam Avenue between 68th and 69th Streets has been arrested, and is a woman.

“18-year-old Trinity Velez was arrested yesterday in her home,” Deputy Inspector Timothy Malin, commander of the NYPD 20th Precinct, told WSR. “She is the one on video who throws the punch. We are now working to arrest the remaining three suspects.”

The group of four was attempting to rob the unidentified victim, who reportedly suffered broken bones in her face. She fought back and managed to hold on to her bag.

Additional signage and mirrors have since been added to the tunnel as further safety measures, according to the construction manager of 200 Amsterdam Avenue, at the urging of state Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal.

Police are offering a $2,500 reward for information about the remaining suspects, seen in the above video.

Call 1-800-577-TIPS with any information on this crime.

NEWS | 36 comments | permalink
    1. Lana says:

      Who is that guy who walked by as she’s being attacked? How awful and sad.

    2. davidaron60 says:

      Looks like a gang initiation to me. She will rat.

    3. Marianne says:

      I’m happy to hear one of the 4 was arrested. Ms. Velez just managed to screw up her life in a big way. No doubt, she’ll have plenty of time to reflect on it in the coming years. Now let’s get the other 3 perps, so we can rest easier. Saying that the area is under 24 surveillance is not enough to deter someone who is not in their right mind and has criminal intent. Please make the streets safe again!

      • Janis says:

        I would imagine if Ms. Velez had done this before her 18th birthday she probably would have gotten a good reprimand, and her juvie record expunged on her 18th birthday.

      • Justice for the Victims says:

        I’m afraid a liberal judge will allow this CRIMINAL back on the streets with a mere slap on her wrist. Thank you NYPD for the great work.

    4. Robert K says:

      I love facial recognition

    5. Karen says:

      Jeez, that’s a lot more than a sucker punch! They’re dragging her all around on the ground! I’m guessing the guy walking by was an accomplice on lookout. Can’t imagine anyone just walking by that and not stopping.

    6. Judy says:

      Unbelievable- Looks like TWO people walked by without stopping.

    7. Sam Koo says:

      Two men walking by.
      How disturbing.

    8. Vince says:

      SHAME SHAME SHAME on that coward that passed by and did absolutely nothing. SHAME ON YOU!!!! They should arrest that person too for doing nothing.

      • Ed says:

        This isn’t Seinfeld. And while we all like heroes, no one should be forced to put him/herself at risk of injury. What if the assailant was holding a knife?

    9. Janice says:

      I hope they find the other three (I bet she’ll give them up) and they all do hard time.

    10. Bruce Bernstein says:

      two people walk by without doing anything, including one after the attackers had fled. Wow. Sad.

    11. Evan Bando says:

      Great work by the NYPD. But: “Additional signage and mirrors have since been added to the tunnel as further safety measures, according to the construction manager of 200 Amsterdam Avenue, at the urging of state Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal.” Sorry, AM Rosenthal, not enough. Pass legislation that requires security guards at all tunnel scaffolds at construction sites at their expense. They can afford it.

    12. Rob says:

      Mirrors? Why, so you can see who is about to punch you? Ridiculous. The company whose building on this site should have a guard on duty around the clock, visible to pedestrians and the cowards lurking in the dark to attack

    13. Carol E Feldman says:

      Was that really a random person just walking by and not acknowledging what was happening?

    14. John says:

      How about a security guard posted there, 200 Amsterdam Avenue is responsible for this unsafe place,
      This is council woman Helen Rosenthal’s area why isn’t she demanding a security guard at night?
      Call her office (212) 873-0282 or stop by in person 563 Amsterdam Ave at 87th street to ask her directly.
      The developers donations to Scott Stringer certainly could cover the cost until they make the passageway open and safer. #safety #upperwestside

    15. Linda Hersh says:

      How hard can it be to find the others when you have one?

    16. Sheila Wolk says:

      whats with these people that see what is going on and just walk by????????????????? they should be ashamed in not helping the victim!!…grrrrrrrrrr

    17. jimbo says:

      I mentioned in an earlier post those who did not help are spineless punks.

      • notsofast says:

        The police are not comic-book heroes selflessly putting themselves at risk to protect us. They are civil servants paid by us to do a job for our benefit, just like all other civil servants. The notion that they should be above the law, not accountable to us for doing their jobs properly, or worse — abusing their power — is utterly absurd. I doubt seriously that you would say the same about other civil servants — teachers, for instance.

    18. dannyn says:

      Gee, if the first person grabbed by the cops had been a guy would the story haedline have pointed that out?

    19. Laura says:

      Ugh, the worst part of this video is that 2 people, TWO PEOPLE walked by like nothing was happening and did nothing. Deep breath.

    20. Carlin Meyer says:

      Look more carefully. The two guys who walked by are two of the four in the opening picture, all standing together.

      As for facial recognition, think hard before you decide you love it. It’s how private companies like Facebook et. al., and government entities, can identify each of us in real time, and track all the demos we attend and activities we engage in that are picked up on soon to be ubiquitous more sophisticated facial recognition cameras. You, on your way to Sloan Kettering (your employer can learn you have cancer), or to an abortion clinic, or to a demonstration of any kind, or playing hooky from work or school. You, outside smoking when you told your parents/spouse you’d quit. You, on your way to buy a product you’d rather your parents, partner, employer, family, best friend or government not know you bought/used. And they are notoriously inaccurate, and in a racially biased way. And they are being experimented with in some schools. Are you sure you sure you love the idea of this technology being everywhere?

    21. UWS’er says:

      I hope the victim is feeling better soon and I’m thankful
      they arrested the attacker. The 4 people appeared to be working together, look at the last screen shot of the video of them walking together. It was likely a planned attack. So awful!! Now we need to avoid walking in construction tunnels for fear of being attacked. A security guard is the only answer. Mirrors & surveillance cameras are not enough. I would not be surprised if the victim sued the City, the Building Owner & Contractors for lack of security. They are all on notice of the unsafe condition. What is it going to take???!!

      • Barry S. says:

        Yes, sue everybody. If the construction company was following city regulations, how is it liable? And how is walking under the enclosed scaffolding different from walking through a passageway in the subway? Sue the MTA every time someone is attacked in the subway. And who do you sue if you’re attacked on an open sidewalk? Change the laws if that’s what’s required. Crime happens – it’s bad and it’s frightening. But it’s also random.

    22. Deputy Inspector Malin says:

      To be clear, the two people that walked by were in on it… they were lookouts. We recovered video from a few blocks away that shows all four perpetrators walking and talking together. They are also wanted. Our detective squad has additional leads in this case, so don’t be surprised if there is more news in the near future. We will keep you posted.

    23. Robin says:

      It seems highly likely that the two men that walked by were the lookout part of this rotten gang and NOT strangers.
      That’s great that they caught HER.
      From the initial photos, I thought it looked like a female.
      For $2500, I’m sure someone will rat them out! What a tragedy for all.

    24. jimbo says:

      How many other civil servants were killed doing their jobs over the years.
      notsofast, your nickname says it all.

    25. Marcia Kaye says:

      Months ago when work began they posted a small, young man to sit in the north corner of the scaffolding tunnel.At least I assumed that’s why he was there. Then he wasn’t, and there’s been no security since. “More signage” and even mirrors won’t protect those trapped in the tunnel. LIVE security coverage is needed; Lord knows they can afford it !!!

    26. Jan says:

      What is happening to our youth? We need more money
      pumped into education.
      By the way, if I were walking by, and I saw 4 violent
      people attacking someone, I would be outnumbered and would get the Hell outta there fast
      before they attacked ME.. Best I could do would be
      to call 911.