Police Blotter

Arrest in Soho mugging

A man was walking on Mercer St. between Spring and Prince Sts. shortly after midnight on Tues. Jan. 27 when one of four men who came from behind grabbed his shoulder bag, police said. The victim, a resident of St. Marks Pl., held onto the bag during the ensuing tug of war and the suspect ran off without it. A short time later, police arrested Derick Martin, 17, and charged him with attempted robbery.

Sixth Ave. burglary

A resident of 192 Sixth Ave. between Prince and Spring Sts. left his apartment around 6:45 a.m. Mon., Jan. 26 and returned at 9 p.m. to find that a bedroom window that opened onto a fire escape was smashed and his laptop and case had been stolen, police said. The victim, 59, told police that the front door, which he had locked when he left, was unlocked when he returned.

Embezzlement arrest

A Manhattan grand jury last week indicted the bookkeeper for the New York County Lawyer’s Association, 14 Vesey St., for grand larceny for stealing $331,376 from the association between April 2005 and January 2008.

Brian Lam, 41, who worked for the venerable lawyers’ group for 19 years and was responsible for sending the association’s payroll data to Automatic Data Processing Inc., called in several extra payroll amounts for himself, according to the charges. The extra money was deposited in Lam’s account, the Manhattan District Attorney’s office said.

The theft was discovered by an audit prompted by a discrepancy in the association’s account. Lam pleaded not guilty to second degree grand larceny at his arraignment on Thurs. Feb. 5 when bail was set at $75,000 pending a Feb. 26 court appearance. The charge is punishable by up to five to 15 years in prison.

The association released this statement: “This is a sad day for everyone here at NYCLA, as a former NYCLA employee clearly abused our organization’s trust.  Unfortunately, as the victim of this crime, NYCLA cannot say more at this time given that this is an active criminal matter.”

Arrest in bank robberies

Police arrested Thomas Maguire, 24, on Tues, Feb 3, and charged him with robbing four banks in Lower Manhattan between Dec. 31 and Jan. 24. Police identified the suspect’s tattoo “MOM” on his arm.

On. Dec. 31, he told a teller at the Sovereign Bank branch at 336 Broadway, “No games, nothing smart. Let’s have a nice New Years, OK?” and made off with $3,800, according to the Manhattan District Attorney’s office.

On Jan. 14, he got away with $1,000 from the Washington Mutual branch at $10 Hanover Sq. and on Jan. 16, he made a teller at the Citibank branch at 111 Wall St. hand over $1,425, the D.A. said. The suspect took $2,520 from a teller at the TD Bank branch at 25 Hudson St. on Jan. 24, according to the charges. Maguire was being held in lieu of $75,000 bail pending a March 10 court appearance.

Cane assault charge

William Butler, 55, was arrested on Thursday afternoon, Jan. 29 and charged with second degree assault for hitting a stranger in the face with his cane at the corner of Spring and Lafayette Sts., police said. The incident started when the victim bumped into the suspect, according to the charge. Butler, who gave the homeless services center at 333 Bowery as his address, was being held pending a Feb. 4 court appearance. The victim sustained a cut over his eye.

Cell phone heist

One or more burglars stole 370 cell phones from Sunshine Wireless, 156 Church St. sometime between 8 p.m. Mon., Jan. 26 and 10:30 a.m. the following day, police said. Four padlocks securing the steel roll-down gate and been clipped, police said.

Car gone

A motorist who parked his car in front of 78 Reade St. near Church St. at 4 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 29 returned 20 minutes later and found it had been stolen, police said. The driver discovered the car keys were missing and surmised that he had dropped them while getting out of the car, police said.

— Albert Amateau