Downtown Crime Watch

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$40k rock goes missing

While most of us like to don jewelry that has some sentimental value, like a wedding band, graduation bracelet or necklace to remember a friendship, when the item surpasses the cost of an average monthtly mortgage payment, it is perhaps best to leave it at home. A 29-year-old woman went into a nail salon last week wearing a $40,000 engagement ring and came out with bare digits. The woman told police that she put the ring into her bag while getting her nails done and realized the next morning that the 2.1 carat, princess-cut diamond with a platinum band was missing. Suspecting a technician had stolen the piece of jewelry, the woman returned to the salon but the ring has not been recovered.

ATM Theft

We've always assumed that ATMs were unbreakable, but apparently that isn't so. A machine at a café on Broadway in Lower Manhattan was broken into last Sunday, Jan. 22, and $1,500 in cash was stolen from it. On a side note, we also always suspected that ATMs carried more legal tender.

Caught on Tape

Even employees' cubbies aren't sacred to enterprising thieves. A 21-year-old woman who works at a pet store on Nassau Street placed her bag on a hook underneath the cashier's counter in the morning. When she returned a few hours later to get something out of her bag, she discovered it was missing. Video surveillance of the store shows a man weighing about 175 pounds, standing 5-foot-10, snatching the sack and walking out of the store.

While the young woman's credit cards didn't show any unauthorized charges, a $330 Apple iPod Touch and a $400 pair of bamboo earrings were among the stolen items.

Making out Like a Bandit

A tall man was able to snatch over $3,000 in jeans from a clothing store on Prince Street in Soho last week, Wednesday, Jan. 18. According to police, a man dressed in a dark jacket, light hoodie and jeans was carrying a red bag when he entered the shop and swiped 10 pairs of jeans. Each pair cost $319, for a total loot of $3,190.

This incident, however, wasn't the worst-or most expensive- example of retail theft Downtown last week. At a clothing store on Greene Street, a man walked in, took a $4,295 mink jacket off the rack and proceeded to run out of the store.

An Unclean Fight

Sometimes, one can be in the wrong place at a very wrong time. Last week, a 26-year-old man was casually drinking with a co-worker at a bar on Exchange Place when a man, who was a stranger to the victim, hit him in the face with a barstool. The aggressive man, whom a bartender later identified as a regular, ran out of the bar with a friend and drove off in a Mercedes. According to police reports, the victim wasn't seriously injured and only had cuts to his left eyebrow and nose.

A String of iThefts

Last year, the NYPD reported a growing trend of iPhones, iPods, iPads-really, all things "i"-being stolen out of the hands of innocent citizens in the subway system of New York City. According to two recent reports from Lower Manhattan, it seems the trend is continuing. A 26-year-old woman was riding a downtown 5 train last Thursday, Jan. 19, when a man snatched her iPhone 4S and leapt out of the car right as the train doors were closing. In another case last week, a woman was on the subway-when it stopped at Fulton Street, two men in their 20s riding in the car with her grabbed her iPhone 4S and exited the car. These bold ithieves carried out their crimes in the afternoon.

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