Police Charge Suspect With String Of Eight Home Burglaries In Clarkstown, Orangetown And Ramapo

Clarkstown police arrested Alejandro Cruz, 43, of Staten Island on Thursday in Nanuet


Clarkstown police report they arrested Alejandro Cruz, 43, of Staten Island on Wednesday afternoon in Nanuet and charged him with four home burglaries in Nanuet and New City that involved cash and jewelry.  Orangetown and Ramapo police investigators interviewed Cruz and were planning to charge him in connection with one Orangetown break-in and three in Ramapo. Police report Cruz will be charged with eight burglaries. He is currently being held for arraignment in Clarkstown Justice Court.

Sgt. Jo Anne Fratianni said Cruz walking on Grandview Avenue in Nanuet on Wednesday afternoon at 4:20 p.m. when a detective on the department’s burglary task force spoke with him.  The officer noticed he was wearing shoes “consistent with footprints that were left at some of the burglary scenes” and took Cruz to police headquarters for questioning. After further interviewing, police arrested and charged Cruz with four burglaries in Clarkstown: Wilton Circle in New City, and Fenner Lane, South Middletown Road and Grandview Ave in Nanuet.

A home on Grandview Ave was broken into Wednesday. The other burglaries in Clarkstown had occurred over the course of a week. Break-ins on Lafayette Drive and Ellen Street in New City and Rinne Road in Nanuet are still under investigation. A safe was taken from the Lafayette Street residence and police said that appeared to have been done more professionally.

“Ellen Street was not attributed to him,” said Fratianni. “Lafayette Street was not attributed to him.”

The break-in on Rinne Road in Nanuet has not been connected to Cruz.

Fratianni said Cruz, who had been released from jail in November after serving 10 years for burglary, had previously lived in Rockland and had ties to the area. She said he did not have a car, was traveling by bus and moving the area on foot. Fratianni said police think Cruz was committing the break-ins on his own.

Investigators from Orangetown and Ramapo Police investigators also interviewed Cruz and will be charging him with three burglaries in Ramapo and one burglary in Orangetown. The Orangetown break-in took place near Silver Birch Lane and Townline Road in Pearl River, police said.

In response to the break-ins, Clarkstown police initiated a burglary task force, which supplemented the daily patrols with additional patrol officers.

Mike Hirsch March 22, 2013 at 10:53 PM
I do not criticize the individual officers. I believe that the force is overstaffed and overpaid. Ray Kelly of New York has reduced his department's budget while simultaneously reducing crime, and may be out of a job when Bloomberg leaves office. We could offer him a $30,000/yr raise and still be paying him less than our chief, and ask him to come to Clarkstown and do the same.
Ken McQuade March 22, 2013 at 10:56 PM
Best Argument for not having a county wide police force. Keep the force in Clarkstown. God Bless the Men and Woman and great K-9's at station 201.
stephany March 23, 2013 at 12:45 AM
how so, the burglaries [crimes] in question happened in Clarkstown and nothing kept Cruz in Clarkstown. if Cruz was holed up in Ramapo what would the cpd do. your argument should be for a county wide pd
Ken McQuade March 23, 2013 at 01:06 AM
Stephany Your logic sounds good but what would really happen is that most of the cops would be deployed to the area's with more crime. Less good guys for your town and mine. I worked in White Plains for many years for Nynex with many people from all over Westchester they told me many of the horror stories when the town and villiage Police were replaced by a county Police force. I have lived in Clarkstown for 53 years and other than the Coke scandel that rocked Clarkstown during the 70's I have been very proud of the Clarkstown Police.
stephany March 23, 2013 at 01:27 AM
clarkstown could teach them all how to do it and then rockland would be as safe as clarkstown [less crime all over] and we would have 1 pd, or are we talking demographics here as in middle class white people who can afford to live in c town don't commit as much crime as you know who from other towns do. that is my theory and i am not alone.. c town is safer because of who lives here not who works here so much
Michael N. Hull March 23, 2013 at 01:33 AM
<<<Cruz, who had been released from jail after serving 10 years for burglary did not have a car, was traveling by bus and moving the area on foot >>> Sadly, in this thread I find no words of compassion for this wretched man. I suspect he is possibly a victim of our Draconian legal system. In the NY Times I read .... http://www.fedcrimlaw.com/visitors/PrisonLore/NYT-CollateralConsequences.htm QUOTE: Under a federal law, anyone convicted of a crime is barred from public housing. There is also a lifetime ban on receiving welfare or food stamps for those convicted of drug felonies and prohibitions against getting certain jobs in plumbing, education and other fields. Felons with drug convictions are barred from receiving federal student loans. Judges, prosecutors and advocates are criticizing the laws as counterproductive and urging that they be re-examined. "They make it even harder for newly released inmates to find jobs and housing and therefore to lead productive lives," said Jeremy Travis who coined the phrase "invisible punishment" to describe such penalties. A convicted felon put it this way: "Basically, this stuff is telling me I've served my time, I'm out, but I'm never going to be allowed to be part of society again. So what do you want me to do? I'm going to end up doing something wrong again."
Michael N. Hull March 23, 2013 at 01:34 AM
Continued ..... James Kalven, a writer said the public housing eviction law had created a "whole group of guys who are essentially nomadic because of their felony convictions, getting out of jail and having nowhere to go." In New York, there are more than 100 prohibited job categories, including plumbing, real estate, barbering, education, health care and private security. "The law makes no allowance for rehabilitation. It just seems designed to go on punishing people forever." END QUOTE Let writers on this thread remember that, while we should congratulate the police for meeting their job descriptions, an officer of the CPD who earned over $200,000 in 2012 cheated on his overtime. He was permitted to resign keeping his Clarkstown pension and has nothing on his record to prevent him from finding future employment. I ask which of the two is the greater criminal? The one who had everything and cheated to get more or the one who had nothing and stole to make ends meet?
Phil Costa March 23, 2013 at 01:56 AM
Well said.
Clarkstown life March 23, 2013 at 02:33 AM
Stefanny, you are so blinded by misguided disgust that you don't see the good things.......but keep going with the semantics....it's not working
Greaaaaaat March 23, 2013 at 02:35 AM
Please Mr Hull, get over yourself. apples and oranges and you can quote your own written articles (which I enjoy reading) as much as you want, but apples and oranges, and dont make this guy to be a victim. perhaps you should have just sat on the sidelines for this one, even you are wrong at times.
Clarkstown life March 23, 2013 at 02:36 AM
Way to divert focus yet again..... Time and place for everything but your agenda gets stuffed into every article.
Greaaaaaat March 23, 2013 at 02:39 AM
@stephany. Good police work, I agree.
Clarkstown life March 23, 2013 at 02:44 AM
30k is one speaking engagement for Kelly.....he would laugh at that and you.......as far as staffing....you know very little of what you speak.....best bet...stay silent
stephany March 23, 2013 at 03:30 AM
good, not great.we agree. Cruz had to cooperate.and he did
johns7 March 23, 2013 at 03:44 AM
No he didn't have to cooperate, Probably from great questioning by the arresting officer he did.
Michael N. Hull March 23, 2013 at 04:01 AM
Greaaaaaat: You wrote <<<You can quote your own written articles (which I enjoy reading) as much as you want>>> Thank you for the compliment about your enjoyment of my articles (and I mean that sincerely). My initial information on the problems felons have after leaving prison came from meeting several felons at a day long meeting of the Hudson River Presbytery which is a part of the Presbyterian church. I am an elder in the Presbyterian church. I did not quote from my own articles but from the NY Times whose article explained the same problems I had become aware of from personally meeting with such victims. That is why I opined that there were "no words of compassion for the wretched man" in this thread. What does anyone know about why he has become a recidivist? I would like to know some more about him as a fellow human being and why a 10 year prison sentence left him wandering the streets as ill-prepared as he apparently is to rejoin society. As to 'apples and oranges' and "get over yourself" the question I posed is very simple and the facts are clear: An officer of the CPD who earned over $200,000 in 2012 cheated on his overtime. He was permitted to resign keeping his Clarkstown pension and he has nothing on his record to prevent him from finding future employment. Which of the two is the greater criminal? The one who had everything and cheated to get more or the one who had nothing and stole to make ends meet? The question stands!
and until there is a intense audit done at arms length...there seems to be a very dark cloud over most of clowntown...one that has been caused by a cop for just 4 hours...yeah right. let the audit go back say 7 years and it should be for every single employee in every department...
Clarkstown life March 23, 2013 at 01:41 PM
Your question , on its face, is flawed. Cruz is a lifelong convicted criminal and felon. The cop isnt. Since you asked the question, yet again, i will answer with a question....if Cruz were to break into your house and go into you and your family's most private things......who would be the bigger criminal then? Wowwww, you have so much insight into the felon life after meeting with a few in church and reading an article.....you should blog about it again and again and again. Meet with the VICTIMS at your next civic meeting and see what they say.
Clarkstown life March 23, 2013 at 02:38 PM
Had to cooperate?? Oh, you must've watched a lot of CSI and LAw and Order....so you know it all?
Michael N. Hull March 24, 2013 at 01:12 AM
Clarkstown Life I'm busy at the moment reading your comment "again and again and again". Would it be OK if I ignored you some other time?
Mike Hirsch March 24, 2013 at 11:50 PM
I do know a few things: (1) Clarkstown has 40 more officers than Orangetown per capita, which, for two very similar towns shows me that Orangetown manages their manpower more efficiently, (2) Orangetown brought in an outside consultant to evaluate their police force and make recommendations about a year ago. Alex said he would do the same, but I don't believe ever acted on that pledge, and (3) Orangetown has a vibrant two party system of electing their representatives, while Clarkstown does not. The conclusion that I draw is that Clarkstown's one party system of government is counter productive to reining in the CPD budget.
Brian March 25, 2013 at 12:24 PM
Good job CPD. My 70-year-old mother is home alone during the day, and she was worried about this guy. Kudos again to the officer for being alert!
INTHEKNOW March 25, 2013 at 02:42 PM
Gee Mike, your expert analytical mind at it again. Wow, Clarkstown has more cops than Orangetown?? Orangetown has under 50,000 residents, Clarkstown nearly double that. Pearl River and Nyack combined have nearly as many businesses as New City. The rest of Orangetown is mostly residential, while Clarkstown has the hub of Rockland, Nanuet, and its huge commercial properties, as well as the largest mall in the state of NY, which sees upwards of 50,000 people on a busy weekend. CPD answers double the number of calls in a year. You really don't think your posts out do you?
INTHEKNOW March 25, 2013 at 02:47 PM
Michael Hull writes..... <<Cruz, who had been released from jail after serving 10 years for burglary did not have a car, was traveling by bus and moving the area on foot >>> Sadly, in this thread I find no words of compassion for this wretched man. I suspect he is possibly a victim of our Draconian legal system. -- Then he writes of how the poor fellow can't get public housing and will have trouble finding a job. However, a few posts later, his cop hatred comes out and he writes .... --- An officer of the CPD who earned over $200,000 in 2012 cheated on his overtime. He was permitted to resign keeping his Clarkstown pension and he has nothing on his record to prevent him from finding future employment. Sounds a little bi-polar.... In one instance, we should move on and forgive the sinner, allow him to move on and better himself, even allowing him public housing.. .anything else is "invisible punishment" However, in the case of the police officer, who lost his job, and could lose his home, there is no compassion for the man and his young children... No, for him, he must never work again. By the way Mike, you have to do 20 years to get a pension... and I don't know where you think this many will get another police job.. any potential employer will simply google him, or ask why he left his last job... Is that not also "invisible punishment?
Mike Hirsch March 25, 2013 at 03:56 PM
If you had read my post, you would have seen that I said "per capita". Clarkstown has 80,000 residents and 162 officers. Orangetown has 50,000 residents and 62 officers. Something is clearly out of whack regarding CPD manpower when compared to Orangetown.
INTHEKNOW March 25, 2013 at 05:26 PM
I read your post.. and your per capita argument makes no sense... Im sure that Clarkstown and Orangetown have the same amount of officers per single family home, but Clarkstown has dynamics that don't exist in Orangetown, thus the need for additional officers. For example, Orangetown has two high schools, Pearl River and Tappan Zee. Clarkstown has Nyack, Nanuet, CHS North and South. Orangetown has about 10 grammar schools, Clarkstown has nearly 30. You also can't discount the mall, Nanuet's bustling shopping district (soon to have another mall) and a hundred other variables. You are trying to make your point by comparing apples to orangetown... It's a silly argument. Why don't you argue that Orangetown has more cops than Stony Point.. it's the same silly premise?
Michael N. Hull March 25, 2013 at 07:16 PM
Intheknow writes <<His cop hatred comes out>> Thankfully I have no "hatred" in my soul for anyone. As to the police their compensation is unsustainable and their services will have to be outsourced or reductions will occur. That will be painful. <<<cop hatred >>> 1) I served as a reference for an officer presently serving in the CPD. 2) I was a friend of ex-Chief Schnackenberg. We attended the same church. 3) I knew both ex-chief Sherwood (had dinner at his home several times) and knew his son very well. I have no ill will towards Officer Sherwood but I am saddened by his behavior. <<<We should forgive the sinner .... in the case of the officer there is no compassion >> Both are "sinners" as YOU put it. We ought to forgive BOTH and be compassionate to both but we ought not condone or forgive either of the acts. There must be justice, not retributive but restorative. Cruz received retributive justice which clearly was not restorative. An officer in Westchester is going on trial. He earned 1/3 what Sherwood received & was accused of falsifying only 2 hours of OT. He faces retributive jail time. http://www.lohud.com/article/20130213/NEWS02/302130077/D-Mount-Vernon-cop-lied-about-2-hours-overtime-reports <<< 20 years to get a pension.>>> Sherwood has a pension. http://newcity.patch.com/blog_posts/stoneturn-could-turn-stones <<<By the way 'Mike'>>> By the way my name is 'Michael'
Mike Hirsch March 25, 2013 at 07:18 PM
Thank you for a civil discourse. I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. As far as my original post regarding the solid performance of the CPD, I feel that it's important to tell people when they do a good job. I do the same for Alex. When he does something that I think is good, I say so. People will only listen to you if they think that you're being objective, which I always try to be.
Anthony Mele March 27, 2013 at 09:14 PM
Patch Editor: Question. What is the evidence besides generic brand sneakers found in the Dollar Store? Was he found with any of the stolen goods? Was he identified by any witnesses? One story said he traveled by public transportation - was he seen with any of the stolen goods or the bus schedule coincide with the times of the burglaries? So far, he has prior's and generic sneakers is all that is reported accusing him of being a one man crime wave.
Watchdog March 28, 2013 at 12:02 AM
Appears obvious he was profiled since he did 'fit in".the neighborhood.,A good attorney would get him off. Too bad he cannot afford one.


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