53-Year-Old Man ‘Sucker Pushed’ in Afternoon Robbery on 88th Street And Broadway

By Carol Tannenhauser

On Sunday, February 2nd, at 3:35 p.m., a 53-year-old man walking south on Broadway at 88th Street was pushed from behind by a man in his 20s who took his cellphone and fled southbound on Broadway, according to an NYPD spokesman. “The victim fell to the pavement, suffering a cut to his nose. He walked himself to a nearby urgent care center. The perpetrator was dressed all in black, wearing a red cap on his head.”

“I was there when it happened,” emailed Christine, one of the people who tipped us off to the incident. “The perpetrator ran past me and the man who was robbed fell face first on the sidewalk busting open his nose and chipping one of his front teeth. [The police] spoke to him when he was at City MD urgent care on 88th Street.”

No arrest has been made at this time.

NEWS | 60 comments | permalink
    1. Jack says:

      This is getting ridiculous. It is just unacceptable to have robberies in broad daylight on busy streets in “safe” areas. What is going on??

      • UWSHebrew says:

        The word is out among criminals, our area is “easy pickens”, with sparse police presence, plenty of subway exits to safety, and extremely low chances of being apprehended. This city is being destroyed by our mayor and his policies.

        • Ish Kabibble says:

          Document that.

        • Stuart says:

          The phrase is actually “easy pickings”.

          Easy Pickens was an actor and the brother of Slim Pickens, an actor that usually played cowboy roles.

        • Rachel says:

          Couldn’t agree more. But how the hell are we going to take back our city?!

        • Richard says:

          “Being destroyed by our mayor and his policies”!? I like our mayor. Of course, I still remember crooked Rudy and his crooked police commissioner, so to me, most any other mayor seems good.

          • UWSHebrew says:

            Can someone remind Richard how Rudy completely turned this city around with the elimination of squeegee guys (who are back!), and the revitalization of Times Square? Which literally brought hundreds of millions of dollars into this city by tourists once word got out that the dangerous city of old is now quite safe? Which in turn, made Broadway theater shows boom with lines around the block? The candidate for mayor who says he or she will tackle crime, I am voting for, period.

            • Christian says:

              Koch and Dinkins revitalized Times Square, it just didn’t come to fruition until Rudy was in office so he nabbed the credit. Just as our current president claims credit for the economic recovery.

            • UWSHebrew says:

              @Christian, from Wikipedia: “Following up from an initiative started with the Walt Disney Company by the Dinkins administration, and preceded by planning and eminent domain seizures that went back to the Koch administration, under Giuliani the Times Square redevelopment project saw Times Square transformed from a center for small privately owned businesses such as tourist attractions, game parlors, and peep shows, to a district where media outlets and studios, theaters, financial companies, and restaurants predominate, including MTV Studios, an ESPN Zone, and (formerly) a large Virgin Megastore and theater.” — Dinkins allowed a riot to happen.

        • dc says:

          I am starting to feel like “easy pickens.” At some point, the negatives of living here will surely outweigh the positives for many, including me.

      • Lisa says:

        Perp knows that even if he gets caught, he’ll be out in no time under the new bail laws.

      • Fed Up says:

        Wildly progressive policies that blunt the ability of the police to do their job.

    2. Billy Amato says:

      Maybe people will feel more vigilant when walking down the street blind to others on the sidewalk after they read this, maybe they will watch for the walk????

      • Wally says:

        Can you re-post your comment in coherent English, please?

        If you referring to distracted pedestrians, that is not a factor when someone is assaulted from behind in broad daylight.

        Please get a clue. Thank you.

        • UWSmom says:

          I agree with Wally that one cannot be expected to have eyes in the back of one’s head. But, to Billy’s point, the chance of robbery surely increases with the increase in value on display. A phone that is not out/visible is less likely to be taken. Unfortunately we have the unfortunate intersection of criminals emboldened by a justice system tilting to their favor, and citizenry walking around while commonly flashing $1000+ phones. Frankly I am surprised this does not happen more often.

          • Josh says:

            I’d be willing to bet the reason he was suckerpunched was that he was walking along staring down at his phone. Had he been otherwise just walking, the perpetrator would have just chosen someone else.

            Before people complain about how crime is now rampant and it is the fault of the mayor, or any other politician, people have to realize that any crook would be tempted by such low hanging fruit. We might be the safest big city in the country, but this is still a city. This is Gotham, not Mayberry.

            • Pedestrian says:

              Wow, the victim is at fault. How dare they temp the criminal like that. What twaddle! The mayor and the city council are at fault and so it’s the state legislature.

            • Rachel says:

              Josh. Your comment infuriates me. Clearly you did not live in the city during Dinkin’s (our mayor’s mentor!!) reign of terror. Nor were you part of the extremely hard fought cleanup under Bloomberg. NYC is not Mayberry but it sure as hell isn’t Gotham either!! Instead of blaming the victims, learn your NY history, code of human civility and how not to let your envy of the haves blind you to crime and the need for punishment!

            • balebusta says:

              Josh, what a charming idiot you are. Are you suggesting that, much like rape victims, this person had it coming because of their own behavior???? That is the false equivalence you are drawing here. No matter what anyone is doing or not doing, wearing or not wearing, holding or not holding, NO ONE has the right to assault or rob another person. Sure, it makes sense to be street smart, but you are a hair’s breadth away from blaming this innocent person…it’s his fault he has a cell phone and was using it? WRONG. It is the fault of the criminal who chose to assault and rob an innocent person.

            • Rob G. says:

              Blame the victim much? I guess that girl in the short skirt is just asking to get raped, right? You have a pretty low bar if you feel that we don’t have the right to walk down the street and look at our iPhone without inviting a mugging.

            • Marilyn says:

              Yes. Perhaps income inequality is the problem, duh!

              I was a child of the 70s, early 80s and I HATE the Disney Land Times Square.

              There was an HBO series that showed Koch, another F-the-poor mayor, was the one who began the illegal Times Square evictions.

          • janis says:

            So, if I understand what UWSmom is saying, the victim was asking for it because he may have been looking down at his expensive, $1000 cellphone? Wow, does that ring a bell regarding another kind of crime. “Well, judge, if she hadn’t been wearing that short skirt…”

            Of course the odds are greater if the mugger sees something expensive that he wants. But the big problem is, he knows he’s not going to get caught due to the lack of police presence. And even if he is, the new bail laws will have him out in 15 minutes with a desk appearance ticket which he’ll throw in the trash.

            I agree with UWSHebrew. We have become a lawless city and the Mayor would prefer to nap his way into his final year rather than do the right thing by the law abiding citizens of this city.

            Then, whoever he deems the candidate to carry his torch into the term after that will do just that. And UWSers just keep voting for anyone with a D after his/her name.

            “There Are None So Blind As Those Who Will Not See”

        • Tanya says:

          I will take kindness and respectful communication any day over “coherence”. Please be more thoughtful with your comments in the future and keep them to yourself, perhaps.

          • UWSHebrew says:

            You do realize we are discussing a violent crime that occurred in broad daylight where we live and the victim could easily have died? Passions are high because this is our lives we’re talking about, that explains the lack of “kindness” regarding this frightening topic. People are scared.

    3. Bill Williams says:

      Is it time to bring back “mugging money” on the UWS?

    4. LKLA says:

      Thank you Mayor DeBlasio.

      Once again, thank you for all you have done, and continue to do, for the city.

      Be it the dog poop, the homeless, the noise, the construction, the crime, or the deteriorating public transportation system, the scaffolding scam, the overcrowded schools, or garbage on the street, you are really improving the lives of every NYer.

      Did I mention the hike in taxes?

      • MattyIce says:

        Wait, DeBlasio is responsible for dog poop?

        • Ish Kabibble says:

          Aside from the dog owner, who else would you blame?

        • Cato says:

          DeBlasio is responsible for removing the trash cans from the corners, making it much more cumbersome to dispose properly of dog “poop”.

          If the owner has to walk two blocks (fighting a dog who wants to go home, the other way) to find a trash can, maybe the owner will think twice next time about picking it up at all.

      • Whadda Mess says:

        Perfectly put. He probably hates parked cars, too.

    5. ST says:

      In the olden days we called them muggings.
      Targeting older people in a neighborhood of older people. Still no NYPD patrols or resources devoted to the UWS.

      • Josh says:

        Right, if only they had precincts of police officers dedicated to just the Upper West Side. In my imagination, I would give them two of my favorite numbers, like 24 or 20. And their police cars would patrol only in the Upper West Side. But alas, we don’t have any police patrols dedicated to patrolling the UWS.

    6. steve says:

      “The perpetrator was dressed all in black, wearing a red cap on his head.” LOL.. great description.. journalism is dead…truth is dead..when you hide from the public the truth society is doomed…

    7. Sheldon says:

      “Dressed in all black wearing a red cap on his head” …. Seriously? That’s your description?

    8. John P says:

      street cam images of perpetrator?

    9. Llo says:

      25 years. I’ve never once seen a cop walking on west end Ave.

      • Josh says:

        These days, they drive. Only cops I ever see walking are transit cops walking from the 1,2,3 line to the B,C.

      • Deb says:

        West End Ave is not mentioned in this article, as the crime was committed on Broadway.

        The only uniforms you will see on West End are either traffic cops giving out tickets, or doormen.

        • UWSmom says:

          There are plain clothes cops “patrolling”. If you want to see more uniformed cops with fixed posts on Broadway, call the 20th and 24th precinct and tell them. You can also attend their monthly community meetings and voice your opinions there. The more people that come, the more of a difference it can make. Everyone feels like they can come on to facebook, Twitter, etc and yell how they feel, but it is so unproductive. If you want change, learn who your elected officials are, contact them, and don’t stop letting them know that what is happening now is unacceptable.

      • BillyNYC says:

        I’ve been living here for 52 years and I have never seen a cop walking the streets.
        And it sure is not gonna start today. it’s a thing of the past…….Way past.
        I’ve never heard of a cop walking the streets other than what i’ve seen in the 1940 old time movies.

    10. Rodger Lodger says:

      I’ve had broken teeth fixed and this poor guy is going to pay way more to the dentist than the value of his cellphone.

    11. Pedestrian says:

      Smash and grab assaults are on the rise. A woman has her cell phone snatched out of her hand at 76 and Broadway in the broad day light. Crime is on the rise and DeBlasio is blind to it. It’s time for the City to start protecting law abiding citizens. I’ll be frank no crime that involves person to person interaction is non violent or petty.

      When a person fall on a sidewalk it’s just lucky when they don’t hit their head and die. Something has got to be done!

    12. Ben David says:

      Even if the mugger is caught, he will be released without bail to strike again under the new NYS bail “reform” laws. This is a fact — this crime is a “no bail” offense.
      Moreover, even if NYPD sees this mysterious mugger with a red cap (sorry — we are not allowed to say if he is white, black, Asian, Amish), they will not stop and question him. Too risky. So, my advice to you, fellow Upper West Siders, is keep voting for Democrats (in local elections) and watch the crime rates skyrocket. And whatever you do, stay off the streets at the very unsafe hour of 3:35 in the afternoon.

    13. DM says:

      I live in the 60’s on Broadway and come 11pm at night, I hear yelling, screaming, and groups of loud youth. I look at the time and I think what on earth is going on out there. This is on Broadway. The danger out there is palpable to me — I can feel it. There are no consequences and there are no police around. I don’t like the Republicans, but I will be voting for one this time around for mayor of New York. Being liberal and caring doesn’t have to mean not telling the truth and not supporting the laws and protecting people from crime. Also, put cameras EVERYWHERE. I’m getting tired of hearing these stories which are daily. I hate to believe it, but I guess it’s true – the cities run by Democrats are out of control.

      • Karen L. Bruno says:


      • Nevets K says:

        Thank you, DM.
        I hate the national Republican Party.
        But I will also be voting Republican in all NYC elections from now on.
        That is the only message our delusional Democratic office holders will hear.

    14. balebusta says:

      I can’t take this anymore…I am at a loss! DeBlasio has ruined this city, everything is completely unsafe. He has alienated the police force and made this city a sanctuary for criminals…no doubt this perp will not be caught, and if he is, will be back out on the street free to continue victimizing others…the ADA doesn’t prosecute anymore…spare me the victim blaming about needing to be more aware of your surroundings etc — yes we should all be aware, AND, we should all have a reasonable expectation of safety! It is unreasonable to live in a society where you need to remain hypervigiliant 24/7 because criminals are free to attack. Walking down the street should not require the hypervigilance of a Navy Seal to maintain bare minimum personal safety.

    15. Birkenstock says:

      Stop complaining. You proudly voted—twice!!—for this mayor. Elections have consequences UWS!

    16. Janice says:

      Time for more police presence on the UWS.

    17. tom burnett says:

      Recent examples of violent crime underline how important it will be to communicate with others and with the NYPD. One way to participate is to attend the monthly Community Council meetings. The 24 Precinct (86th to 110th streets west of Central Park) Council meets on the third Wednesday of each month at the Precinct. The next meeting will be held at 7 pm on February 19. It will be led for the first time by the new Commanding Officer, DI Naoki Yaguchi. We hope to welcome him with a large attendance. I have met with him and he is adamant about working with the community to improve public safety.

      Tom Burnett, President of the 24 Precinct Community Council

    18. NativeNYer says:

      The combination of people staring at their phones, wearing ear pods, the lack of street cops & ZERO repercussions for criminals are the reasons for crimes like these.

      PLEASE put your phone away. While having a phone out doesn’t mean you’re to blame, it does invite trouble, so don’t be an easy target.

      Use the SOS feature on your phone, take a photo of a perp if you see someone attacked. And for crying out loud, take the next Mayoral election more seriously.

    19. Marci Mason says:

      That happened right on my corner. I can’t remember the last time I saw a cop in the neighborhood; except for two in a patrol car parked in the bus stop in front of Duane Reade right there. I see them a couple of mornings a week as I head to the subway – around 6:45 am. They’re just looking at their phones and drinking coffee.

    20. MAD says:

      Don’t know where this is going yet, but here is some news on bail reform-reform: https://nypost.com/2020/02/12/cuomo-state-democrats-secretly-meet-to-fix-controversial-bail-reform-law/
      Also — agree with those here who question the “blame the victim” approach. We have a right to safe streets, day and night. I think it is a great idea to attend the Police Precinct meetings — be counted, be vocal, and be helpful. Thanks to those who posted info about meeting dates/times.

    21. Pam says:

      If you want to take the city back stop voting for Democrats. They are responsible for ruining all big cities.

    22. Carol Braverman says:

      THAT is my bus stop. What time of day is safe to wait for a bus if 3:35 pm isn’t. As if waiting for a bus is not bad/long enough.

      When is the mayoral election? We need a shake the hand of a Police Officer Day!