BHB Reader Robbed at Gunpoint

This disturbing news from a BHB reader:

Last night about midnight, I was robbed at gunpoint while walking my dog at the corner of Aitken and Sydney. After the cops showed up (very quickly I might add) I came to understand that the same perpetrators had robbed a group of three only two blocks away on Joralemon and Clinton a few minutes before me.
While crime is nothing new in New York and I understand that muggings happen even in Brooklyn Heights on occasion, I write this to you with the hope that my story may serve as a wake-up call to my neighbors. I have lived in the City for 5 years and in the Heights for 2.5, and I have always felt safe. I am a taller fellow and have always felt like an unlikely target because of my size. In addition, the dog I was walking is a pitt bull mix and certainly has the ability to intimidate. These factors did not stop the people who robbed me and I doubt that it would stop future people looking for a victim. So please, be aware of your surroundings and the people around you. And if you have the ability to make changes to your building, please check the surrounding areas to make sure that they are well lit.

Update: Here’s a description from the reader:

One male, black, 20-25 years of age wearing all black clothes including a baseball cap and skinny jeans. Slight build and about 6 ft. The gun looked like a glock. Two females accompanied at about 5’7″ of medium build, both black and wearing dark clothes. I noticed them walking on the opposite side of the street (I was walking towards Clinton on the south side of the street) and after they had passed me, the male ran across the street be behind me when my dog started barking. I turned around to see him about 12 feet away with the gun pointed at me. He told me to drop everything and not let go of the leash. I put my wallet and cell phone on the ground and one of the females picked them up. They then told me to continue walking and not turn around. The other party was told to get on the ground and empty their pockets.

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  • x

    That area between Joralemon and Atlantic is pitch dark at night. It is a prime spot for muggers

  • x

    Also any description of the perpetrator(s)? One or how many?

    What did they look like? Clothes?

    It might help since they are likely to strike again.

  • x

    btw, all the money spent on the blue Xmas lighting on Montague could have spent on a couple of working light bulbs for Clinton/Henry/Hicks street!

  • WillowtownCop

    Please post a detailed description of the perps and how exactly they did it. Were they waiting for you somewhere, did they follow you, what did they say, what kind of gun was it, etc.

  • Jose Uribe

    It seems like 75% of the crime on BH occurs in this area. Don’t the police uses statistical analysis to identify areas of high concentration of crime and to station additional police in these areas? If we could just move the Popeyes and Checkers over to Fulton mall the perps would have no legitimate reason to be in the area (provocative statement, I know, but true).

  • jorale-man

    That spot is right beneath my window although I had just fallen asleep and didn’t hear anything last night. I’m really sorry this happened to you.

    One thing: I do wish that the Packer School would hurry up and take down the scaffolding that’s covering much of Clinton Street in front of the converted church building. It’s a particular menace to the area and I always make a point of crossing the street there.

  • Teddy

    Yeah that scaffolding on Clinton St. makes a great ambush spot at night.

  • t

    I am one of the other party of three that was also robbed at gunpoint last night (3/28/2010 around 12:30am). We don’t live in Brooklyn Heights, but were visiting a friend in the neighborhood and definitely want it to be a safe place for the residents and others who spend time in the area. We were robbed close to the corner of Joralemon and Clinton and the description I can provide is pretty much identical to what was already posted. The male was about 6ft tall, black, early to mid 20s, thin, and was dressed in jeans and a dark jacket. The two women were both black or possibly hispanic, probably early 20s, thin, around 5’7″, and wearing dark clothes. The man came up behind us first and put a gun to one person’s head. He told all of us to get down on the ground. Then the two women came running up, one from across the street in front of us and one from the same side of the street in front of us. The said to empty out our pockets and keep our heads down. After they’d taken everything, the guy told us to get up and continue walking down the street without looking back or he would shoot us. I hope this doesn’t happen to anyone else.

  • Jose Uribe

    Where is Bernie Goetz when you need him:

  • AEB

    Let’s NOT use this thread for racism or the promotion of vigilante “justice.”

  • Jose Uribe


  • AEB

    …or misogyny.

  • Jose Uribe

    I apologize . . . I meant to say big pussy. I really hope you are the next person who gets his jaw broken (remember that from last yr) or robbed at gun point by some punk who’s family has been collecting welfare funded from the taxes paid by residents of this neighborhood.

  • cat

    I was wondering why the cop car with flashing lights had been parked at Schermerhorn & Clinton all afternoon and on into the evening. Of course, the cop car has been gone since around 10 p.m. and it’s raining–does that mean the thugs aren’t working?

    I’m sorry for the ones who experienced this last night. How f’ing scary. I’m glad you are all safe. I use Aitken as a short cut all the time, but won’t be doing that after dark. And I hate that scaffolding on Clinton.

    One can definitely get a false sense of security in the Heights, and then be very rudely awakened.

  • cat

    P.S. Jose, do you really wish AEB to be the next one to be hurt or robbed? Don’t wish ill on your neighbor just because s/he doesn’t agree with you. Karma sucks.

  • Joe

    Jose, why would you wish violence on any BH neighbor or any human being for that matter? Something alarming has happened in the area and these posts are the best you can muster?

  • WillowtownCop

    The fact of the matter is these crimes are happening because there are not enough police actually driving around the streets. They may put a car on a fixed post for a little while but there will be a radio run and the car will have to leave. I’d like to say it’s because there are 6,000 less cops in the department than there were in 2001, and that’s about 75% of the problem, but some of it is due to the mismanagement of resources. There are plenty of full duty cops with desk jobs at 1PP and in precincts all over the city whose jobs could be done by civilians. These are mostly people with time on who would not be victims of the layoffs that the mayor is threatening. I’m not saying this because I’m worried about my job- I have enough time on that it wouldn’t be me either- but if cops are laid off this will continue happening.

    Jose- I thought you were an idiot when you threatened to vandalize cars because you didn’t like the way they were parked- now you’re a racist and a sexist who hopes people who disagree with you get mugged too, and you’ve lost all credibility with pretty much everyone on the blog.

    To the people who were robbed, which direction did the perps flee, if you were able to look?

  • jay

    more light and “eyes on the street” as Jane Jacobs would say. not just cops, but residents too. i know how we treasure our relative peace and quiet in bh, but sometimes I wish we made a little more noise at later hours, especially when i have to walk home late.

    i don’t mean to flip about it, but feeling like people are watching has got to be the best deterrent for crime, no? not sure what my “suggestion” is here, but it’s clear that something needs to be done.

    also, very interesting to read the description. this undoubtedly reveals my own mistaken assumptions, but if I were walking home at that time, I would assume that I was “safe” because there were two women in the group of perps. stupid, I know.

    ultimately, glad nobody got hurt. let’s all keep an eye out for each other.

  • john

    Thank you for posting this information. I hope you are not too traumatized. I run at night and will heed your advise.

  • Terence


    You are a coward, who hides behind racism and prejudice. Why don’t you go ahead and be Bernie, no one on this blog will visit you in Rikers. Maybe in there you can befriend your fellow skinhead and Klansmen.

  • JM

    Was it right at the corner of Joralemon and Clinton? I live by there and always felt like that area was pretty well lit, especially with the deli right at the corner.

  • j

    this wouldn’t have happened if responsible citizens were able to carry concealed in NYC.

    what does the perp risk when he’s holding a gun? not likely someone who is going to fight back, thats for sure.

    bernie! bernie! bernie!

  • L

    JM: I was one of the first three victims. We were on the opposite side of the street but right by the deli. While obviously these things can happen anywhere in the city, we were a little caught off-guard, especially since that particular spot wasn’t exceptionally dark, there were people about, and we were so close to the subway station and a store.

  • Ari

    I never take my wallet with me when I take my dog on late night walks.

    I wonder if the victim(s) has not had these possessions on them, what these thug-douche-low-lifes (I’m not racist, all people who behave like this are all equally worthless excuses from humans) would have done to them.

    I was out walking my dog I guess sometime after these events happens, police everywhere looking for something. Police chopper with the spot light shined on me a few times.

    Nice to know we have such a powerful reactionary law-enforcement system…..

  • RamonaQ

    Ari, I was wondering the same thing. I never take my wallet with me when I walk my dog. What happens then?

    I always thought the fact that I had my dog with me was a deterrent. I guess this is my wake up call that not all criminals are scared of dogs.

  • t

    I wanted to respond to some of the questions people had anout the incidents. It’s too bad that there weren’t more cops patrolling the area, but I will say, once we called the cops, there were about a dozen of them there within 10 minutes. We were just past the intersection of Clinton and Joralemon walking toward Court St when it happened. I don’t live in the area, but I think we were right next to a church or a school(?). I think the perps went back in the other direction toward Clinton, but they said not to look back or they’d shoot so I it’s hard to say for sure. The three of us that were robbed first happened to only have a collective $10 in cash, but they didn’t open up our wallets/bags and check until afterward. They just asked us to hand everything over and empty our pockets. I wonder if the second incident would have still happened if we’d been carrying more cash.

  • No One of Consequence

    Another case where only the criminals have guns.

  • Monty

    J, you would seriously attempt to draw down on a guy who already has his gun out and pointed at you? Unless you are some kind of quick draw master, you’d be dead. You might also recall that Bernie Goetz shot a bystander.

  • WillowtownCop

    Ari- how are the police supposed to know where a mugging will
    occur before it happens? Are you suggesting a cop on every corner?
    That doesn’t exactly make people feel safe either. The other option
    is stepping up stop/question/frisks, which are not too popular in NYC
    either. If the police are too reactionary in your opinion, what do you
    suggest we do to prevent crimes while not scaring everyone and not
    getting sued for violating people’s rights?

  • tb

    I love how people think that if you have a gun it will protect you. What do you think happens when you are pulling yours out? You get shot. Or you get shot because you don’t know how to use said gun once its out. Let’s be reasonable people. Weapons are just not the answer.
    Btw.. what happened on Saturday Night on the 2 train??