Crime Watch

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Laundered Money

A local laundromat was robbed by a knife-wielding thug. At 5:25 p.m. on Saturday, March 29, a 30-year-old man entered a Laundromat/dry-cleaning establishment on East 81st Street. He approached an employee, whom he ordered into the back room at knifepoint. While the employee remained in the back room, the robber took $500 from the store's cash register before fleeing. Police said they suspect the same man has been responsible for a number of similar holdups at other area laundries.

Took Pocketbook

Two men stole a woman's pocketbook. At 12:36 p.m. on Sunday, March 30, a 65-year-old woman was obtaining flu vaccine in a drugstore on Second Avenue, when a 20-year-old man snatched her pocketbook from her shopping cart. The man had a male accomplice, whom police described as a lookout. The pocketbook contained $42 in cash, a passport, a Medicare card, a credit card, and keys. Video is available of the incident.

Suspicious Indeed

Someone withdrew cash from a woman's checking account. On Thursday, March 27, a 70-year-old woman received a phone call from her bank reporting suspicious activity in her checking account. After receiving the call, the woman realized that her debit card was missing, as well as two checks from her checkbook. She managed to stop one of the checks but not the other, which was cashed for $675. Two unauthorized ATM transactions were also made in the amounts of $400 and $503.

ATM Dispenses Bad News

Another woman fell victim to identity theft. On Tuesday, March 18, a 51-year-old woman tried to withdraw money from an ATM machine, only to encounter a message stating that she was unable to do so. She checked with her bank and discovered that someone had made an unauthorized withdrawal of $1,450.74 from her account. She had been in possession of her debit card the entire time.

Community Alert

Safeguard your apartment and home. Recent burglaries have occurred in the neighborhood. Be alert for suspicious activity. Perpetrators are gaining entry by:

? Forcing locked doors, mainly the front, due to inadequate locks.

? Front doors left open and unsecured.

? Unlocked rear windows.

? Fire-escape windows.

Remember to:

1. Lock all windows and doors ? even when you will be away from home only for a few hours, even if you live in a doorman building.

2. Install and lock secondary locks.

3. Do NOT leave your electronics (laptops, iPods, etc.) near your windows in plain view.

4. Install only FDNY-approved safety gates on fire-escape or ground-level windows.

Your local precinct Crime Prevention Survey consists of a walk-through of your home and a list of security recommendations to help prevent your chances of being burglarized. Call your local precinct and ask the crime prevention officer for this FREE service. If you have any information regarding any burglaries, please contact your local precinct detective squad.

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