April 3, 2020, By Michael Dorgan
Violent bike bandits, brandishing knives and guns are targeting e-bike riders crossing the Queensboro Bridge, the police say.
The suspects – acting in gangs of twos and threes – have been attacking and physically assaulting e-bike riders and stealing their bikes and cellphones, according to the police.
In total, there have been six reported attacks of riders crossing the bridge since January, each incident resulting in the theft of the victim’s e-bike. E-bikes range in value from anywhere between $400 and $2,000.
The suspects have been targeting male riders – aged between 19 to 48 years of age – by punching and kicking them. One victim was struck in the face with a bike lock. The robberies have taken place between midnight and 4:15 a.m., police said.
The police are looking for three suspects between 18 to 20 years of age, 5 feet 6 inches to 5 feet 8 inches tall, and weighing between 150 and 170 pounds.
One of the suspects was last seen wearing a dark green jacket and black pants. The second attacker was wearing a dark jacket with a red and white stripe. Police have not released any more information on the third assailant.
The first robbery took place in on Jan. 22, at around 4 a.m., when a 47-year-old man was riding his e-bike along the lower eastbound level bike path on Queensboro Bridge. He was stopped by two thieves who displayed a knife and a gun. The suspects stole the e-bike and made off.
In February, there were three separate incidents involving the alleged bandits.
Beginning on Feb. 11 at around 4.15 a.m., a 32-year-old biker was riding his e-bike along 1st Avenue and East 60th Street when he was approached from behind by two suspects. They punched him multiple times in the face and then stole his bike.
The next robbery took place on Feb. 13 at around 2:45 a.m., when a 29-year-old victim was riding his e-bike on the Queensboro Bridge. Three suspects ambushed him from behind by striking him in the face with a bike lock and knocking him off his bike. They beat him up and stole his e-bike, two cell phones, and some cash.
Then on Feb. 15 at around 1:45 a.m., a 48-year-old victim was riding his e-bike at 2nd Avenue and 59th Street when three unidentified suspects approached him from behind, punched him and stole his bike.
In March, the suspects were allegedly involved in two bike robberies.
On March 3, at around 3:40 a.m., a 40-year-old victim was riding his e-bike at East 59th Street on the Queensboro Bridge, when two suspects approached him from behind and demanded his bike. The thieves punched him in the face and stole his bike and cell phone.
The most recent attack occurred on March 20, at around 12:20 a.m. and involved the assailant’s youngest victim – a 19-year-old man.
The young man was riding his e-bike on East 59th Street and 2nd Avenue when the three thugs approached him from behind. they punched him in the face and stole his bike and book bag.
The police have released a surveillance photo of two of the suspects wanted for questioning.
Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the CrimeStoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or on Twitter @NYPDTips.