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Queens Chronicle

Robbers just pretended it was police brutality

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Posted: Friday, September 13, 2019 2:37 pm | Updated: 12:08 pm, Thu Sep 19, 2019.

Luckily, the hospital was right there.

Two guys on bicycles beat and robbed a man in Elmhurst last July 17, and police on Thursday released video of the perpetrators — who told their victim they were cops — in an effort to find them.

The incident occurred at 2 a.m. in the area of 41st Avenue and 81st Street, right in front of NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst (what people who speak English instead of bureaucratese generally call “Elmhurst Hospital).

The 37-year-old victim was walking down the street when the two thugs approached on their bicycles and started punching and kicking him, the NYPD press office said. 

“While one of the individuals removed the victim's wallet and cash, the two individuals stated to the victim that they were Police Officers before fleeing the scene,” the office said.

Emergency Medical Services responded and took the victim to the hospital with pain, bruising and swelling about his face. The value of his lost property is estimated at $900.

The two men playing cops who are really robbers were described as Hispanics in their late teens or early 20s, one wearing all white clothing and the other in all dark garb.

The crime occurred within the 110th Precinct. Anyone with information about the bad guys is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1 (800) 577-TIPS (8477) or, for Spanish, 1 (888) 57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit tips by logging onto nypdcrimestoppers.com, or by texting 274637 (CRIMES), then entering TIP577. And just this week, the NYPD announced the availability of a new app that people can use to report tips [see separate story here at qchron.com].

All tips, however delivered, are strictly confidential. And accurate ones can lead to reward money.

Asked why the police put out a press release and video so long after the crime occurred, something that periodically happens, a department spokeswoman, Det. Annette Shelton, said they were issued when detectives on the case requested media attention. Investigators may do that for various reasons when a case is still open, Shelton said.

UPDATE

This article has been updated to include the Police Department press office's response to why a press release was issued so long after the crime occurred.

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