City chooses choice for Downtown schools

Volume 21, Number 34 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | December 26 – January 1, 2009

Police Blotter

$2 million theft

Shemika Jackson, 33, a former sales manager for Travelex, Inc., a foreign currency exchange dealer at One New York Plaza, pleaded guilty on Wed., Dec. 17 to stealing over $2 million from the company between July 2006 and March 24, 2008.

Jackson, who earned $40,000 a year at the company where she worked from January 2001 until March of this year, would take money from the safe at Travelex and create false transactions in the computer to make it appear that the missing money was correctly balanced, according to the office of District Attorney Robert Morgenthau.

The Travelex branch at One New York Plaza provided cash disbursement services to Goldman Sachs’ partners and employees. The theft was discovered by Jackson’s supervisors and both Travelex and Goldman Sachs assisted in the investigation, prosecutors said.

Jackson spent the money on concert tickets, limousine rentals, travel, cars and hotels, according to the charges.

Sentencing on the charge of first degree grand larceny is scheduled for Jan. 7. Jackson is facing four to 12 years in jail.

Canal St. dip

A Connecticut woman was shopping at a stall on the northeast corner of W. Broadway and Canal St. on Saturday afternoon Dec. 13 when a woman pulled her inside to look at some special bargains, according to police. The victim, 52, soon discovered that her wallet with $500 in cash and various credit cards was missing from her bag. Later, she learned that unauthorized charges had been made on her credit cards at Macy’s and other department stores, police said.

Not so sweet

A former cashier at Jacques Torres Chocolate, 350 Hudson St., Esther LaMothe, 22, was charged with grand larceny on Fri., Dec. 12 for skimming credit card numbers from customers and making unauthorized purchases totally $4,988, police said.

Tackled and robbed

A Brooklyn man was walking on the northeast corner of Pearl and Cedar Sts. at 9 p.m. Wed., Nov. 26 when a mugger tackled him from behind, knocking him to the pavement, police said. The suspect took the victim’s cell phone and $80 in cash and fled. The victim, 23, sustained a broken arm and was treated at New York Downtown Hospital.

Diamond watch

A burglar, who forced his way into 116 John St. and entered a fifth floor accountant’s office sometime between 5:30 p.m. Fri., Dec. 12 and 11:15 a.m. the following day, made off with a diamond watch valued at $15,000, police said. The burglar apparently left a window in the back of the office open when he left the place, police said.

Found but lost

A woman forgot her bag on a sofa in the lobby of 450 North End Ave. on Thursday afternoon Dec. 11 and went to visit a friend in the building. The bag was returned to her at 3:30 p.m. when she passed through the lobby on her way out but her wallet with $109 in cash, credit card, driver’s license, keys and her iPod were missing, police said.

Stolen cars

A New Jersey man parked his 2008 AMC Jeep in the Icon parking garage at 243 Pearl St. near Fulton St. around noon on Fri., Dec. 12 and returned around 9 a.m. the following day to find it was stolen. Police said there was no broken glass or skid marks at the place where the Jeep had been parked.

A Ford van making a delivery was stolen from the southwest corner of Spruce and Gold Sts. on Wednesday night, Dec. 10, police said.

Women’s room thief

A Queens woman, 26, hung her bag over the back of a stall door in a women’s room at Borough of Manhattan Community College, 199 Chambers St. at 9 p.m. Wed., Dec. 10 and turned around to wash her hands. When she turned back for her bag a few minutes later, it was gone, police said.

— Albert Amateau