NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Police released photos and are trying to track down two suspects they say are responsible for a series of robberies in the subway station at 53rd Street and 7th Avenue.
The robberies started on October 24, and happened on four different occasions, all during the evening rush hour, with the robbers targeting women.
The first incident occurred on the uptown B platform. The following three robberies happened on southbound E trains. Three times the victims had their cell phones stolen, once, an iPod touch.
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No injuries from the robberies were reported.
CBS 2’s Mark Morgan spoke with several women who use this station, and after showing them pictures of the suspects, they said they were shaken by the brazen thieves, who strike in full view of hundreds of other commuters.
“Well, I was actually tempted to not go to the subway station today. It was on my mind,” said Stacy Freidman of Astoria.
“I’m very disgusted and terrified. It’s heartbreaking,” said Melody Scott of Key Gardens.
In three of the four robberies, the men waited until the train pulled in to the station, and when the doors opened, they reached inside, grabbed what they could, and ran.
“Well it makes me a little nervous because I didn’t know that was happening. So I guess just a little uneasy,” said Jessica Villani of Bushwick.
Knowing they are the targets of these thieves, women told Morgan how they plan to guard their valuables on the subway.
“I think just not having your cell phone or iPods out in your hands, keeping them in your bags or in your pockets, I also carry a bag where all of my valuables are on the inside and they’re up against my body,” said Michelle Velasquez of Chelsea.
“You can be sandwiched in between hundreds of other people. You probably don’t realize it’s happening until it’s too late, because you’re getting jostled around,” said straphanger Leah Blesoff.
If you have any information, call police or Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS or visit www.nypdcrimestoppers.com.
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