Crime Watch

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Fire Starter Police were called to the scene of a fire in an East 96th Street building last week on Wednesday afternoon. Fire officials determined that an unknown perpetrator had intentionally set the blaze in the trash compactor area of the residential building, calling the fire "incendiary." No one in the building was hurt. There are no suspects at this time. Grand Theft Ice Cream Two men walked into an Upper East Side grocery store at 12:40 p.m. last Sunday. They were apparently quite hungry and began stuffing 80 pints of Haagen Dazs ice cream into a duffle bag. For good measure, they also threw in eight packs of Dove soap, for a total haul worth $543. An employee working at the store, a 25-year-old Bronx resident, saw the duo and tried to stop them from leaving without paying for their dessert feast. He grabbed the duffle bag from one of the men, but the other then punched him in the head numerous times and snatched the bag back, police said. The pair escaped and are wanted for felony robbery. There were no cameras at the scene. Parking Ambush Last Saturday at around 2 a.m., a car pulled into a parking garage on East 67th Street. Four men got out of the vehicle, ostensibly to ask the lone parking attendant about the garage fees, when one of them sprayed the worker in the face with pepper spray. The victim ran off to seek help and the four perps fled, their motive unclear. Traffic Brawl A man reported a traffic altercation turned violent to police last week. The 34-year-old victim said that he was sitting in his car, a 2000 white Honda CR-V, at a stoplight on the corner of First Avenue and East 60th Street last Thursday at 10 p.m. A man in the vehicle directly in front of him, also waiting for the light to turn green, got out of his car and came over to the victim's driver's side window, shouting, "Why you honking at me?" He then reached through the open window and struck the victim with a parking club, he said. There were no visible injuries, but the man said the blow caused severe pain in his shoulder. He also told police that he followed his alleged attacker in his car all the way up to Amsterdam Avenue and 179th Street. Suspicious Work A woman who lives on Long Island reported to police a highly suspicious circumstance she discovered last week. After parking her car, a 2001 white Mazda, on East 95th Street near Third Avenue on Sept. 28, the woman returned to drive it on Wednesday, Oct. 3. She drove the car only a block, however, before realizing that her brakes weren't working. Concerned, she stopped and called in her mechanic, who investigated and told her that her brakes lines had been cleanly cut. The woman told police that she hasn't had any problems or arguments with anyone in the area and has no idea who might have played such a nefarious and potentially deadly trick.

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