Teens arrested in Hempstead street robberies

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Hempstead Village police arrested a pair of teen boys Thursday and charged them with targeting women and children in a series of four robberies in the village during the past few weeks, including one in which a 14-year-old suspect displayed a handgun.

Romain Robinson, 17, and the 14-year-old, whose name was withheld because he is a juvenile, were arrested shortly after 1 p.m. Thursday. Each was charged with five counts of robbery.

Police said the suspects targeted three women and three children, taking a gold chain, demanding pocketbooks and cash, and injuring one victim.

The first robbery took place about 2:15 p.m Sunday, Oct. 21, when the two approached a woman, 41, who was walking with her son, 3, on Jerusalem Avenue, police said. Robinson, of 43 Chase St., Hempstead, "asked the victim to use her cellphone and when she refused he ripped a gold chain from around her neck and attempted to grab her pocketbook but was unsuccessful," police said in a statement. The two suspects ran off.

The second was Oct. 24 at 9 p.m. when the suspects rode bicycles toward a woman, 22, on Botsford Street near Nassau Parkway and "demanded the victim's pocketbook while the juvenile displayed a black handgun," the police said. When the woman refused, the two rode off on the bikes, police said.

Then just after noon Thursday the two demanded money from a girl, 14, and a boy, 10, on Homan Boulevard, police said. "When defendant Robinson grabbed the female victim by the shoulder two witnesses intervened" and the suspects left.

Less than an hour later on Thursday the two grabbed a pocketbook from a woman, 24, on Willow Avenue and tried to pull a scarf from her neck, causing pain to her neck and chest, police said. The two ran off and were soon arrested by Hempstead Village police on Milburn Avenue and Lawson Street.

Arraignment was set for Friday for Robinson at First District Court, Hempstead, and for the juvenile at Family Court.

Detectives urge anyone who may have been a victimized by the teens to call the Third Squad at (516) 573-6352.

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