Source: Twitter/NYPDTips

Heartless Burglar Hits 82-Year-Old Grandfather and Steals His Cane in a Shop

Esther NJeri
Jun 21, 2021
07:20 P.M.
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A hard-hearted thief punches an 82-year old in the head before snatching away his cane and running off. The incident happened in a Lower East Side bodega.


In the video released on the NYPD Crime Stoppers Twitter on Thursday, the older man, Bernard Serlin, was inside the Big Apple Food Market on Clinton Street at six in the morning getting himself a cup of coffee when the mugger walked over and confronted him.

He started demanding that the older man give him money, and when he refused to comply with the demands, he threatened to hit him with his fist and steal his cane. Serlin still refused to comply.

An old man reading a newspaper | Source: Pexels


When the victim wouldn’t give in, the mugger, later identified as Raoul Hyacinthe, punched Serlin on his head and grabbed his cane. He knocked him down as he attempted to get away, leaving the older man on the floor.

Serlin says he is not a violent guy, but he wishes his attacker was dead after the episode. Speaking to Daily News after the incident, Serlin, who is of a smaller build than his attacker, said:

“He just pushed me. I never saw him before, and he never saw me. The bastard stole my cane ... I don’t bother anybody. This guy was nuts, he couldn’t be sane.”

An old man having coffee at a cafe | Source: Pexel


The attack did not stop the brave older man from getting his usual order of newspaper, morning bagel, and coffee the following day, and he says he is ready for round two with his attacker. He says he is not afraid of anyone anymore.

The attacker has since been apprehended and charged with criminal mischief. He had struck a car with the cane when leaving the deli after the robbery. Another of his charges was throwing a brick through the store window.

[T]hat's when he took off and run into the streets.

An elderly man having his morning coffee | Source: Pexel


A witness identified Hyacinthe as a regular street and lived in the male shelters close to the deli. He has prior been arrested for drug possession, fair beating, menacing and criminal mischief.

Local citizens have expressed their fear of walking the streets in the morning since the panhandlers have become a menace to anyone using the streets, harassing and robbing them. An irate citizen talked to New York Daily News saying:

“I don’t even want to say anything because you never know what they might do. Growing up here, you could go anywhere. Today? Forget about it.”

A deli downtown | Source: Pexels


Serlin’s is not the first case of a panhandler terrorizing citizens. In a similar case in Woodside, Queens, a retired MTA worker, and veteran Oliver Neligan had a similar experience when he realized a man was following him on his way to mass on Sunday.

He had just picked his morning coffee from the deli when he got jumped from behind. His attacker put his hands around Neligans neck, and that's when Neligan started hitting him with his coffee cup.

Serlin in the deli, just before the robbery | Source: Facebook/NYPDCrimeWatch


His attacker then grabbed him, and they tumbled down, and Neligan hit his head on a wall. When Neligan attempted to get up after the wrestle, the mugger pulled Neligans glasses out of his pocket.

Neligan pulled off the mask from the man's face, and that's when he took off and run into the streets. Neligan says he did not give the mugger any money, but he was lucky not to have gotten seriously injured in the scuffle.


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