You are reading

Stolen Figurine Returned to Sunnyside Cafe After Local Outcry

Mr. Moon located in front of Full Moon Cafe at 42-14 Greenpoint Ave. (Facebook)

June 8, 2022 By Alexandra Adelina Nita 

Employees at a Sunnyside café discovered late last month that a small wooden figurine that usually sits under tree in front of their workplace was missing.

The theft was discovered by employees of Full Moon Café, located at 42-14 Greenpoint Ave., who noticed the store’s figurine—a wooden man affectionally known as Mr. Moon—was gone shortly after they arrived at work on May 28.

Employees Gabriel Ibarlucea and Eliceo Suarez had opened the café for the day and noticed that it was missing when they swept the sidewalk out front. The statue had been part of the café since the owner, Angelica Villalba, opened the coffee shop a year ago.

The employees along with Villalba checked the café’s cameras to see who may have taken it and discovered that a man took it at around 5:30 a.m. that day. They consulted neighboring store owners who reviewed their footage that showed the suspect wheel Mr. Moon off in a shopping cart.

Despite the video footage, they were unable to identify the suspect since the camera angles were not clear and the man was wearing a surgical mask. His most identifiable characteristic was the yellow vest he wore with the word Navillus on its back.

Nevertheless, they did their best with what they had to track him down.

“Eliceo went above and beyond and took it upon himself to go look for him,” Villalba said. He had a picture of the man, she said, and asked people on the block if they recognized him.

The Full Moon Cafe also went on Facebook the day of the theft and released the footage and asked local residents for help in locating the culprit as well as the figurine. They received a tip later that day that the suspect was a local.

The very next day the thief appeared at the café just prior to closing. He had the statue with him and decided to return it, having heard they were looking for him.

Villalba said that they were happy to get it back and decided not to disclose who took it.

“We are just happy and thankful that he did the right thing at the end of the day,” Villalba said.

Suarez was similarly grateful and emphasized the role of the Sunnyside community in both the return of the statue and the success of Full Moon Cafe.

“We’re happy being here, we’re growing day by day,” he said. “We want to be here for the community.”

email the author: [email protected]


Click for Comments 
maybe he stole cus he was hungry. Ha!

So he didn’t return it cus he felt bad he returned it cus they were on to him. Really nice thieving neighbors we have.


I’m not going to lie. The first time I saw this figurine, late night while I was walking down dimly-lit Greenpoint Avenue, it scared the **** out of me.


Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Popular places where you can watch the Super Bowl in Queens

Feb. 2, 2023 By Tammy Scileppi

Hey, football fans! Game time is fast approaching, and across the city and here in Queens, you can feel the excitement brewing as the two teams prepare to take the field on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 12. So, kick back and watch the big game, and don’t miss Rihanna’s exciting performance during halftime. 

Borough president hears from community members on budget needs throughout Queens

During a two-day public hearing on the mayor’s 2024 preliminary budget, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. listened to testimonies from 14 community board representatives, community stakeholders and members of the public on where the money should be spent in Queens. 

The public hearings were held both in-person and via Zoom on Monday, Jan. 30, and Tuesday, Jan. 31, at Queens Borough Hall. The testimonials will be used to develop the Queens Borough Board’s FY24 preliminary budget priorities in the coming weeks. 

‘He didn’t deserve to die’: Borough President Richards leads emotional candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards held a candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols outside Queens Borough Hall Monday, Jan. 30 after Nichols’ death at the hands of police officers in Memphis, Tenn., made national headlines for the brutality in which the officers beat him.

Almost immediately after news broke about Nichols’ death, the Memphis police officers who beat him to death were fired and charged with murder. The police department released the body cam footage of the fatal beating on Jan. 27, but many people, including some at the vigil, have refused to watch it due to its extremely graphic nature.

Op-Ed: This Year’s State Budget Must Prioritize Climate, Jobs, and Justice for New York

Op-Ed, Jan. 30, By Assemblymember Jessica González-Rojas

In a time of rampant economic inequality and environmental injustice, it is easy to feel defeated.  Here in Queens and across New York State, however, communities are organizing for a better future. New Yorkers from different backgrounds and with different lived experiences are proving that we can build community, organize, and create a future that reflects our shared values.