The New York Criminal Law Blog

February 2011 Archives

Malikah Shabazz Arrested And Charged With Theft

An arrest warrant from Queens has kept Malikah Shabazz, one of Malcolm X's daughters, held under police custody in North Carolina, according to The New York Times. Authorities said the warrant was a result of an allegation that Shabazz had stolen money from the widow of one of Malcolm X's former bodyguards.

The New York Daily News reported that Shabazz, 45, was charged with identity theft and grand larceny after being accused of stealing the identity of family friend Khaula Bakr, 70. She supposedly took more than $55,000 from Bakr between August 2006 and November 2007 and used the money to pay for her own bills and other personal expenses.

New York Jury Indicts Ann Pettway for Carlina White Kidnapping

A federal grand jury has filed an indictment in New York’s U.S. District Court against Ann Pettway, the 49-year-old Bridgeport woman who was accused of kidnapping the daughter of a New York couple in 1987 and raising the girl as her own child.

Pettway later admitted to FBI agents that she did kidnap Carlina White as an infant, reported the Hartford Courant. “When no one stopped Pettway, Pettway took the victim with her on a train to Pettway’s home in Bridgeport,” read the criminal complaint against her. “In Connecticut, Pettway told her friends and family members that the victim was her child.”

Fitz Fullerton Arrested After Suffering Injuries From Knife Attack

Fitz Fullerton, a 55-year-old cab driver, suffered gashes to his face, hand, and neck after being ambushed and knifed by Maksim Gelman, the killer who was recently arrested after an alleged 28-hour murder rampage across New York City.

However, The New York Times reported police also ended up arresting Fullerton as he was getting stitched up at Brooklyn's Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center. He stated that the officers told him they had a warrant for his arrest, which was supposedly caused by "unpaid ticket" from 2001.

"Someone tried to kill me and I didn't call the police for them to arrest me," said Fullerton. "I called them to protect me."

Maksim Gelman Finally Arrested After 28-Hours of Murder Mayhem

Police have finally caught the 23-year-old madman who spurred a 28-hour violent rampage of hit-and-runs, car thefts, and several stabbings across two New York City boroughs. The New York Daily Times reported Maksim Gelman was found and arrested in Times Square after he brutally knifed Joseph Lozito, 40, on an uptown No. 3 train leaving Penn Station.

Gelman's brutal attacks against innocent bystanders throughout the city were sparked by a rage of vengeance against the girl he was reportedly obsessed with, Yelena Bulchenko. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly described the terrifying event as something he had never witnessed before.

"He certainly did a lot of mayhem and havoc in a short time," said Kelly.

Kristal Khan Charged For Infant Drowning Under Her Care

Queens babysitter Kristal Khan, 29, was charged with reckless assault after allegedly falling asleep from taking NyQuil while 11-month-old James Farrior drowned. Khan claimed she forgot to pour out the water from the mop bucket the night before the incident when the infant fell upside down into the pail to get a hold of a yellow rubber duck.

Khan took the sleep-inducing medicine while looking after Farrior and her own children in June 2009, according to the New York Daily News. The 11-month-old was later found dead after drowning in six inches of water, and the event led the babysitter to appear before the Queens Supreme Court.

Yechezkel Kranczer Charged With Sexual Abuse

Yechezkel Kranczer, his two brothers, and his father, Gershon Kranczer, were accused of sexually abusing four younger female relatives during the last few years. However, authorities are still searching for 58-year-old Gershon Kranczer, the former Brooklyn rabbi of Yeshiva Tehila L'Dovid, after he fled the country with his 20-year-old son Asher (another suspect) and headed to Israel.

Police were able to seize Yechezkel Kranczer's passport and prevent him from escaping to Israel with his father. According to the New York Daily News, the 24-year-old recently posted bail of $10,000 after he was charged for misdemeanor offenses involving sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a child in Brooklyn Criminal Court.

Harlem Rapper Juelz Santana Arrested For Drug And Weapon Charges

Many New Yorkers may have heard about the famous 28-year-old Harlem rapper Juelz Santana, who was arrested on drug charges after police officials searched his recording studio in New Jersey in January. The New York Daily News reported authorities also found that one of Santana’s artists, Toby “Hynief” Raynor, had been allegedly selling marijuana.

Raynor, who was signed to Santana’s Skull Gang Entertainment label, was also taken into custody and accused of selling pot to undercover police officers two times during a ten-month investigation. Law enforcement officials also found two loaded 9mm handguns and 17 small bags of weed in the Bergenfield, N.J. studio.

Tony Simmons Sentenced To Prison For Sexual Assault Charges

Supreme Court Justice Carol Berkman recently sentenced former juvenile justice counselor Tony Simmons to a maximum of four years in prison for sexually abusing two girls in the Family Court building in Manhattan. The New York Daily News reported the young victims had been under Simmons’ custody.

Simmons, 47, admitted to raping one girl and sexually assaulting two other victims in 2005 and 2008. Justice Cassandra M. Mullen, the previous judge last year, had offered Simmons a no-jail plea deal that included three years in prison and 10 years’ of probation if he pleaded guilty to the sexual assault charges.

Good Samaritan William Hebner Has Snow Blower Stolen From Him

Staten Island local William Hebner, 67, had his 400-pound snow blower stolen from the back of his Ford pickup truck after he had cleared the snow in his New Brighton neighborhood. The 67-year-old was devastated by the incident, especially because he and his family could not afford a new $800 machine.

The theft also affected many of Hebner's neighbors since he would often clear the snow off of their sidewalks and help dig their cars out. Hebner has often been acknowledged as a Good Samaritan for the work he has done helping those around the New Brighton block, according to the New York Daily News.