A knife-wielding homeless mugger who committed three crimes in 36 hours boasted to cops that he’d be promptly freed because of New York City‘s lax cash bail law, according to a report.
The crime spree happened as New York City grapples with year-over-year spikes in grand larcenies and robberies.
Agustin Garcia allegedly began his crime spree around 7:30 p.m. November 21 after he stole 12 beers from a market in the Bronx, the New York Post reported.
The New York Police Department confirmed to DailyMail.com that Garcia was arrested inside 968 East 165 Street and charged with petit larceny.
Manhattan District Attorney’s office told DailyMail.com that he was arrested twice afterward for separate personal robberies within a two-day time span – one of which allegedly saw him target a New York City subway straphanger at knifepoint for her purse.
Garcia reportedly told arresting officers that he expected his jail stint to be short.
‘I know I’m getting out,’ he said, according to the Post. ‘I have no record.’
Agustin Garcia, 63, was arrested three times last week and bragged to cops that he knew he’d be released. He was let go without bail at each arraignment
Under former governor Andrew Cuomo’s controversial reform laws passed last year, bail can no longer be imposed on misdemeanors and non-violent felonies in New York.
Advocates of the measure say current bail laws disproportionately target the poorest and people of color. They say that people with no cash can languish in jail for months or even years because they cannot afford to bail themselves out, even if they’re charged with a minor, non-violent crime.
But opponents say the reform also frees dangerous suspects onto the street, who are often emboldened to reoffend.
In a recent development, a new change to the widely disputed reform law allowed judges to now set bail in misdemeanor cases, if the defendant has an open case involving harm to another person.
Meanwhile, the NYPD reported a 44 percent year-over-year robbery spike for the week ending November 21, compared with the same period last year. Grand larceny was up 39.7 percent during the same timeframe.
Robberies are up 3.7 percent overall year-on-year, and grand larcenies are up 5.6 percent.
Robberies are up 3.7 percent overall year-over-year in New York City, and grand larcenies are up 5.6 percent. Felony assaults have ratcheted nine percent in the past year
About eight hours after his initial arrest, Garcia was nabbed again for allegedly ‘forcibly’ stealing a purse from a passenger in the subway station at Canal Street and Lafayette Street, according to the Manhattan District Attorney’s office.
The victim told police he made off with her belongs November 22 at 2:57 a.m., and when she chased after him to demand her items back, he threatened her with a knife.
He told her to ‘stay back,’ the police report said.
Garcia was arraigned on a felony robbery on the first degree charge November 23 and though prosecutors requested he be held on $15,000 bail, the judge let him go on a ‘supervised release.’
He was arrested a third time November 23 at 7:14 a.m. for allegedly swiping an iPhone from a Subway rider’s hand and making off with it. The stolen phone was later found in Garcia’s pocket, police said.
A pedestrian is seen entering the Canal Street subway station in this file photo; last week, a woman was robbed and threatened at knifepoint at the station by a homeless man believed to have committed a series of crimes after being released from jail without bail
Garcia was arraigned on a fourth-degree grand larceny felony on November 24. Prosecutors requested he be held on $20,000 cash bond, but a judge placed him on supervised release and order an emergency mental health evaluation.
Following the string of crimes, the alleged culprit’s brother told the Post that he suffers from schizophrenia.
Jose Garcia said his sibling stopped taking his medicine because he believes ‘God will come down and cure him.’
‘I tell him, “You’ve got to understand that God gave humans the power to make those medications so you can survive. Use it,”‘ Jose told the Post. ‘When he stops using it, we lost him. Forget it.’
Two separate criminal complaints detail how A
In August, the New York Police Department commissioner implored the state’s new Gov. Kathy Hochul to roll back disastrous crime reform laws, calling the ‘soft-on-crime experiment’ a failure that has led to the city’s runaway crime.
‘This city is built on public safety,’ NYPD top cop Dermot Shea told NY1. ‘We’re probably about two years into this soft-on-criminals experiment. … Show me a New Yorker that thinks this experiment has worked.
‘It’s been a disaster. By any definition, it’s been a disaster.’
NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea says recent criminal reforms have been ‘a disaster’
He said a career criminal who had been arrested about 50 times was escorted by an officer to a courthouse to answer to six of his latest charges in August.
Rather than locking the man up, the judge let him go and instructed him to return in a few days later, Shea said.
The man never returned.
Said Shea: ‘Nobody is advocating to throw everyone in jail, but what we have right now by definition is insanity.’