What to Know
- A 35-year-old mother was attacked, beaten and robbed in front of her 4-year-old son in Queens, police say
- The suspect knocked her out, stole her purse, climbed onto the roof of a CVS and fled the area. He was arrested Tuesday, according to police
- The woman was taken to an area hospital to be treated for bruises and swelling to her face and body; her young son was not injured, cops say
A man who allegedly knocked a woman walking with her 4-year-old son unconscious, climbed onto the roof of a nearby business and ran off has been arrested, police said.
The 35-year-old woman was in Queens Monday around 2 p.m. when Derrick Chirse, 57, of Brooklyn, allegedly ran up to her and demanded she hand over her property, according to the NYPD. He then got violent and allegedly punched the mother in her face, head, chest and back, knocking her out and fleeing down 84th Street in Woodhaven with her purse.
Good Samaritans leaped into action and started chasing him into the back of a CVS. Cellphone video showed him breaking into backyards near the CVS, at one point trying to smash a glass backyard door to get into a house. Neighbors tried to box him in, throwing chairs and poking broomsticks at him as they desperately waited for police to arrive.
"He was obviously not wanted back there," said witness David Williams. "He was asking for help but obviously no one was gonna help him. And he was trying to get away, you could tell he was nervous."
Chirse then allegedly climbed to the roof of the pharmacy and got away, the NYPD said and video showed.
"Obviously he's a punk, going after women and children," said Williams.
He was arrested Tuesday morning and faces charges including robbery, criminal possession of stolen property and endangering the welfare of a child, police said.
The woman was taken to an area hospital to be treated for bruises and swelling to her face and body. Her young son was not injured, police said.
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The woman spoke to News 4 New York off camera, asking to remain anonymous. She said she'd just picked up her son from pre-K an hour early and cut through the alley near the church when she was ambushed by the man.
She said she's thankful for the good Samaritans who took care of her son while she was unconscious and ran after the man.
"I'm just glad she didn't get hurt really bad," said a neighbor named Joan."At least she can recover. But she'll still have that fear in her for the rest of her life."