I just received this email from a reader. I believe that I’ve heard about this scam happening in another neighborhood some time ago. I guess the scammer must need money for the holidays.
Just wanted to report a scam that seems to be going on in the South Stuy/Bed Stuy neighborhhod. A man walking a bicycle on the sidewalk brushes shoulders (or slams in to them) with someone walking the other way. Drops a bag with a glass bottle in it–claims that it is a bottle of alcohol and that he is bringing home to his girl/family/whatever and then tries to intimidate the other person to give him money to replace it etc. This happened to us on Thanksgiving eve on our way to the Black Swan. Because it was so close to Tday and I had visions of “when keeping it real goes wrong” in my head (and wanted to avoid a fight between the hubby and the shithead)-we handed over some cash to avoid the confrontation from escalating. The crazy thing is the very next day our tenant relays a similiar confrontation a couple of blocks away–same MO–guy with a bike and a bag/slamming shoulders, etc. The physical description was exactly the same as well. The fellow doing this is about 5’7″, stocky, wears a big poofy black jacket which he likes to unzip during the confrontation, walks a bike and slams sholders with an unsuspecting passerby and then tries to extort money. We have alerted the local beat cops but think it would be helpful for you to post something about this to try an prevent this scam or maybe even get this guy off the street.
Sounds like this guy is quite the busy little scam artist. Has anyone else had this experience?