Police Blotter: Brooklyn woman charged in five Queens robberies

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The robberies were committed throughout a large swath of the borough, stretching from south Queens into the western part of the county, said Officer Chris Cottingham, a police spokesman.

In all of the robberies, the victims, mostly women, were held at gunpoint and were told to turn over their belongings, the police said. In some cases, Cottingham said, the victims were assaulted with a gun or pushed to the ground.

The woman arrested Tuesday, Dayana Sierra, 18, of Brooklyn, was one of three Brooklyn residents charged in the spate of robberies, police said. Nakia Thompson, of Brooklyn, was arrested on Nov. 16, and Jeffrey Lavorn, 29, also of Brooklyn, was arrested Jan. 3, the police said.

All of the suspects were charged with six counts of first-degree robbery, Cottingham said.

The police said the first robbery occurred on Sept. 8 at 199th Street and 115th Avenue; the second on Sept. 17 at 115th Road and 227th Street; the third on Oct. 10 at 148th Avenue and 158th Street; the fourth on Oct. 16, at Austin Street and 75th Avenue; and the fifth and last on Oct. 18 at 139-33 231st St. All of the robberies took place close to midnight.

Cops close Willets Point exit after reports of shots fired

BAY TERRACE - Cars exiting the Clearview Expressway at Willets Point Boulevard were directed over the Throgs Neck Bridge Thursday night, as police searched for an assailant thought to have fired into a police car.

A 109th Precinct squad car, responding to a disabled motor vehicle near 204-10 Cross Island Parkway, called in a report of shots fired shortly after 6 p.m. Thursday, police said. But officials said there were no bullet casings recovered from the squad car. Neither police officer riding in the car was injured in the incident.

The Willets Point Boulevard exit was closed for at least an hour Thursday night as police dogs, emergency service units and helicopters scoured the area, searching for the assailant. Cars that tried to exit were instead sent over the Throgs Neck Bridge. Drivers had to pay the toll heading into the Bronx, but they were given a voucher to come back to Queens.

68-year-old Flushing man charged in four robberies

FLUSHING - A 68-year-old Flushing man was arrested Tuesday night, charged with committing four robberies during a nine-month period, the police said.

Nick Nicholas, 68, of 43-46 165th St., is accused of knocking on his victims' doors, telling them that he was a Con Edison employee, and then burglarizing their homes, sometimes assaulting them, said Officer Chris Cottingham, a police spokesman.

Nicholas was charged with four counts of robbery, burglary and assault, Cottingham said.

The police did not have the locations of the four robberies, Cottingham said.

The robberies occurred between March and December 2000, the police said.

Man robs Hillside Ave. bank by passing note to teller

HOLLISWOOD - A 30-year-old man robbed a bank on Hillside Avenue late Friday afternoon, fleeing with nearly $3,500, police said.

Det. Carolyn Chew, a police spokeswoman, said the man entered the North Fork Bank at 204-12 Hillside Ave. around 5:20 p.m. Friday and passed a note to the teller demanding money. The teller gave the man $3,429, Chu said.

The man did not use a weapon, and there were no injuries, police said.

Prisoner reportedly stomped to death at Rikers Island

RIKERS ISLAND - An inmate was killed Tuesday night in an altercation with another prisoner at Rikers Island, published reports said.

The fight between the inmates occurred at 7:30 p.m., according to the Daily News.

One of the inmates, whose name was not released, was taken to Elmhurst Hospital Center where he was declared dead at 9 p.m.

The cause of death was still under investigation, but the Daily News reported that the inmate was stomped to death.

S. Jamaica man shoots self in foot, arrested

SOUTH JAMAICA - A 19-year-old was arrested Monday night after accidentally shooting himself in the foot, police said.

Cadet John Buthorn, a police spokesman, said the young man shot himself inside his home at 147-26 Glassboro Ave. The man then made his way from his home to Mary Immaculate Hospital, 152-11 89th Ave., police said.

Buthorn did not describe the charges pending against the man.

S. Ozone Park firefighter suffers fatal heart attack

SOUTH OZONE PARK - A firefighter assigned to a fire company in South Ozone Park suffered a fatal heart attack last Thursday while exercising on a treadmill in the firehouse, the Fire Department said.

Firefighter Gregg McLoughlin, 39, of Massapequa, was found around 9 a.m. in the basement of the firehouse where he worked, Engine Company 302, in South Ozone Park, the department said. McLoughlin was taken to the Catholic Medical Center of Brooklyn and Queens, where he was pronounced dead, the Fire Department said.

Fire Department officials said McLoughlin's medical history showed no signs of heart trouble. McLoughlin is survived by his wife and three children.

Man arrested in burglary

REGO PARK - A man who allegedly broke into a post office Monday night was arrested on burglary charges, police said.

A spokeswoman for the police, Cadet John Buthorn, said a squad car responded around 10:10 p.m. Monday to 92-24 Queens Blvd., a post office, for a burglary alarm ringing. When the police arrived, Buthorn said, they saw the rear window of the post office broken and observed a man inside.

The man climbed out of the window, and police arrested him, Buthorn said. The man, Jose Flores Rodriguez, whose age and address were not released, was charged with second-degree burglary and possession of burglar tools, police said.

Forest Hills wreath-burning may be bias incident, cops say

FOREST HILLS - A wreath tacked up on the door of a church that was set ablaze New Year's Day was being investigated as a bias incident, police said.

A spokesman for the police, Cadet John Buthorn, said officials of Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Church at Queens Boulevard and Ascan Avenue notified the police Monday about the Jan. 1 wreath-burning incident.

Buthorn said police were investigating the fire as a bias crime.

Gunmen take cash in donut shop rob

JACKSON HEIGHTS - Two men robbed the manager of a Dunkin Donuts shop Monday, fleeing by car with $40,000, police said.

The men, both in their 30s and wearing hoods, robbed the manager, 42, of the Dunkin Donuts at 70-16 Northern Boulevard around 2:20 p.m. Monday, said Det. Madelyne Galindo, a police spokeswoman. The men pointed a gun at the manager, wresting away a milk crate he was carrying that had $40,000 cash in it, the police said. The police said the money was the proceeds from three Dunkin Donuts stores.

The assailants sped away down 71st Street in a car, police said.

Teens shoot paintball at 84th St. building: Cops

LINDENWOOD - Two teenagers were in police custody Sunday night, charged with shooting a paintball at the apartment building in which they live, police said.

Officer Joseph Cavitolo, a police spokesman, said another resident of the 84th Street building phoned the police after finding paint splattered on the rear door of the building.

The police arrested Frank Caputo, 17, and Joseph Criscuola, 18, both of 156-45 84th St., and charged them each with criminal mischief, Cavitolo said.

Woman hurt on No. 7 train as she steps between cars

LONG ISLAND CITY - A 42-year-old woman accidentally wedged her leg in between two subway cars Tuesday afternoon when she stepped out to light a cigarette, the police said.

Det. Valerie St. Rose, a police spokeswoman, said the woman was riding on a northbound No. 7 train approaching Queensboro Plaza when she opened the sliding doors between cars and stepped out to smoke. Her leg then became stuck between the cars, the police said.

The woman was taken to Bellevue Hospital and was listed in stable condition Tuesday night, police said.

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