NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Police are looking for a man who they said robbed a woman inside an elevator in Harlem after helping her with her groceries.

The incident was captured on surveillance video. It happened just before 4 p.m. Saturday in the area of West 122 Street and Manhattan Avenue.

Police said the man first helped 74-year-old Betsy Brady carry groceries into the lobby of her building.

“I said thank you several times, ‘Oh, thank you very much for the help,'” Brady told CBS2’s Reena Roy.

He then followed her into the elevator, where investigators said he demanded all of her money.

“I was just about to ask him what floor and he said, ‘no don’t make any noise just give me your money,'” Brady said. “I said I don’t really have any money.”

She said the suspect then grabbed her purse, rummaging for cash but found nothing. Instead, Brady gave him $2 from her pocket so he’d back off.

“I just knew there was nothing more I could do about this,” she said. “I had two singles in the pockets of my coat and I gave it to him and he left.”

The widowed mother of two lives alone and just moved into the building a month ago.

“I do know when I went to the store yesterday I was looking behind me at everyone,” she said.

Brady says she will also be keeping a closer eye on who is behind her when she comes home at night.

The suspect is described by police as a black man between the ages of 45 and 50, about 5’8″ to 5’10” tall and between 200 and 220 pounds with a mustache. He was wearing glasses, a tan/mustard colored hoodie and a multicolored hat.

Anyone with information is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782), visit or text tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.

Comments (13)
  1. Stu Kazzo says:

    “Are you not the most wicked and ungrateful of reptiles? But for me you must either have given up your journey, or have been drowned in that stream, and what is my reward? If it had not been for the armour which God has given me, I should have been stung to death.” “Blame me not,” said the scorpion, in a supplicatory tone, “it is not my fault; it is that of my nature; it is a constitutional habit I have of stinging.”
    …..The Scorpion and the Frog

  2. Should have picked our own cotton

    1. swimologist says:

      Exactly. And the cotton gin that was introduced in the 1840s was the death knell for slavery,
      so the Civil War was TOTALLY unnecessary.. unless the North stood to make money from it.

  3. BOLO for suspect with hat. Repeat: Suspect wearing hat.

  4. Ethnicity is seldom a surprise…

  5. If they don’t give the race, then we know what the race of the perp was. LOL… Do they think they’re fooling anyone with these games???… LOL…

  6. Paul King says:

    What good is a description if you don’t name the suspect’s race. Pathetic. PC will kill us all.

    1. Jason King says:

      What good is that info to you?

      1. Rex Jones says:

        All info is important to a crime case…and for the community to know what’s going on….Goofy.

    2. John Collins says:

      Paul, please read the article again.

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