EVG was the first media outlet to report on the assault, and since then, the story has made headlines in the U.S. (via CNN) and the UK. Some of the following details have been linked to or reported on in previous posts... putting it all in one place here:
• Tuesday, Jan. 31
Ray Alvarez and his employee Gabe Thorne were attacked outside Ray's Candy Store around 3 a.m. when the pair went outside for some fresh air. A man, who police later identified as Luis Peroza, struck Ray with a belt with a rock attached, causing a black eye and gash on Ray’s temple. Gabe was hit across the chest.
The suspect threatened to kill Ray, per the police report. All this apparently happened because Ray and Gabe declined an offer to buy seltzer water from Peroza and his accomplice.
• Wednesday, Feb. 1
Around 8:30 p.m., Ray officially filed a police report. Officers from the 9th Precinct visited the shop. Police checked out local security cameras and later released a surveillance image of the suspect.
Sometime that night, police arrested Peroza's alleged accomplice, 55-year-old Gerald Barth, though this news wasn't released until Feb. 5.
• Thursday, Feb. 2
Ray initially declined to seek any medical treatment and continued to work as he has here since opening in 1974.
On this night, a nurse finally convinced Ray to go to Beth Israel, where a CT scan revealed three broken bones in his face and a dislocated jaw. The doctor put Ray on antibiotics and told him to rest.
• Saturday, Feb. 4
Police announced that they arrested Peroza, later described as "a career criminal," with 10 prior arrests dating to 2001 for robberies, assaults, criminal mischief and petit larceny, according to The Daily Mail.
The Daily News reported that Peroza served five years in prison after he was convicted for an assault in the Bronx in 2003. A source told the News that the suspect is "next-level crazy."
Peroza appeared before a judge at Manhattan Criminal Court, The Daily Mail reported.
Luis Peroza, 39, covered his face with a mask and looked glum ...He spoke to confirm his name and told the hearing that he was homeless and lives in a shelter on the east side of Manhattan.
According to the NYPD and media reports, after the assault at Ray's, Peroza and Barth showed up outside a deli on Avenue C, where they allegedly attacked a second victim. Per the Post:
They blocked their second victim's path and demanded, "Give me your money!" authorities said.That's when Peroza hit the victim with "an unknown object, causing a deep, bleeding laceration" to his head and "a broken orbital bone, and substantial pain," according to the complaint filed by Manhattan prosecutors Saturday.
Peroza was charged with first- and second-degree assault, two counts of first-degree robbery, and two counts of first-degree attempted robbery.
During the hearing, his bail was set at $200,000, and he was given the alternative of a $250,000 bond. Peroza remains in the Eric M. Taylor Center at Rikers until his next hearing on Thursday.
Barth, whose erratic past behavior earned him the nickname "Insanity Claus" in Tompkins Square Park after donning a discarded SantaCon suit, was charged with first-degree assault and two counts each of first-degree robbery and first-degree attempted robbery.
Prosecutors ordered him held on $3,000 cash or a $5,000 bond. He's currently at the Eric M. Taylor Center and is scheduled to appear in court today.
According to the Post: "Barth allegedly pointed a finger at Peroza as the muscle in the unhinged incidents..."
feel better, ray! ❤️
Many thanks to the nurse or other medical professionals who are helping Ray get proper medical care. You are appreciated !!!
I'm so sorry this happened to Ray and Gabe, and I hope the thugs they arrested get imprisoned for a long time.
I also hope Ray gets appropriate & ongoing treatment for the full extent of his injuries, b/c even in a younger person those injuries would be considered of great concern - and of course, they are all the more so in a man of Ray's age.
Great reporting, Grieve. It's good for all of us to see the full process here and, thankfully, the police work after the fact working as it should. I just wish we could collectively figure out how to take more preventative efforts to fight issues like this. It seems like there is some progress being made but we definitely have a ways to go. We can all think of people in and around Tompkins that fit the profile of these two unfortunately...
All of these details send chills down my spine. As someone who lives near C, and of course patronizes several shops nearby, I am utterly horrified to hear these two were on the streets terrorizing the public, and were especially responsible for the vicious attack upon an elderly, sweet man we know as Ray, and his other employee who has apparently chosen not to return to work. I cannot imagine the trauma they both endured in that swift moment. I truly hope both of these assailants rot behind their cells for a very long time and are faced with the same brutality. As always, thanks EV Grieve for providing thorough, and concise information about this incident, in addition to other countless ongoings in our neighborhood.
Praying for Ray to heal 🙏🏻 and thankful to EVgrieve for the coverage.
"Yesterday, Ray said he wasn't feeling well and, accompanied by a nurse, went to see another doctor."
Not a good sign. He needs to be admitted, not just taking antibiotics and "resting". And full disclosure, I am not fan of Mt Sinai/Beth Israel.
Interesting to find this article referencing a “Gerald Barth” who would’ve been 41 in 2008. Have had exclusively negative run-ins with this man but nonetheless it appears that he was discarded by state institutions.
$3000 / $5000?!? Given his previous history and what he is accused of doing, it should have been at least ten times that! What a joke!
There are plenty of people who can be counted as "discarded" but they don't go around beating up 90 year old's at 3am in the morning. Zero sympathy. He's a bully and likely would be one in any walk of life.
The suspect would only have to post $300 on a $3000 bail — and $25k in assets (like a car) to be released on $250,000 bail
Perhaps people can call the Manhattan DA's office at 212-335-9000 to encourage swift justice for Ray?
Above all, best wishes to Ray and Gabe for good recovery and strength! - Feeling of guilt: Have we, as a community, done enough to push for universal health care? Ray needs now proper care. But also: we need more mental health and social work outreach to prevent or reduce the likelihood of neighbors spiraling out of sanity. The alleged perpetrators were often seen in and around TSP, at least one seemed regularly frustrated, often menacing. Could professional outreach have prevented the violent assault? Could it have steered their paths away from crime? Could it keep all of us safer from the outset? Where NYPD's giant budget and brutal excesses fails, can we have smarter alternatives that adress root causes?
Was not saying he’s not a bully, he deserves to be dealt with via the legal system plus he’s been menacing to people including myself for quite sometime. Just found it interesting, wonder if his family is still looking for him.
I'm pleased that the criminals were arrested. Praying for Ray and Gabe.
I wonder if it *is* the same Gerald Barth (and if his family ever found him). Surely there was something better that could have been done to help him than bookending his life with stays at abusive institutions, with a sweet 90-year-old man badly hurt along the way. It's so wasteful, so unnecessarily harmful.
Good work on level-headed reporting, Grieve. It's worthy of coverage, but some people would lose their heads.
There's more to those other attacks timeline, per the post:
Peroza and Barth allegedly approached one victim, 33, on Avenue C just after 3:30 a.m. Tuesday, and clocked their prey in the head after he refused a demand for money, the sources said.
The thugs ran off empty-handed, the sources said.
Hours later, at 6:20 p.m., Barth allegedly struck a 51-year-old in the head on Avenue B with an unknown object — possibly a rock in a sock — after the victim declined his request for a cigarette, the sources said. Barth made off with that victim’s cellphone.
@1:45pm: I would hope that Ray has Medicare coverage to pay for whatever treatment he needs.
Seltzer or death? Uh, death please. I mean seltzer, seltzer! - What Eddie Izzard would say. Feel better Ray!
FYI It was the late Bob Arihood who helped Ray get Medicade and Social Security so he was the reason Ray has this.
Damn. I feel so bad for Ray and his employee. WTF is wrong with people? Hope those two are on the mend.
Our justice and mental health systems have deeply failed us as a society. The wave of crime hitting our neighborhood is distressing too.
Here’s a genius idea. Let’s help the mentally Iill before a 90 year old gets beaten. Facts, the proper city authorities were contacted to help “insane Santa” for years. Years. I did the research. He was left at an institution as a child in Staten Island which subsequently was closed due to the abuse of the children there. It doesn’t excuse his behavior. But it definitely doesn’t excuse ignoring him. We failed as a community, city, society. Look it up. Willowbrook, Staten Island.
Glad you read what I did. The descriptions I’ve read are heartbreaking. Is that an excuse for being a part in attacking Ray- no. But reading about him being left and abused as a child is weighing heavily on my mind. We need to do better helping the mentally impaired. Because this system isn’t working.
Yes. We have failed as a society. Beaten, traumatized, medicated from childhood. What exactly did anyone think would happen? His only human compassion came from his grandmother who died years ago. And when he reached out to family, nobody responded.
Post a Comment