An accused serial thief chasing tourists in Times Square can’t keep his fingers on himself – and authorities can’t keep him behind bars.
Dedrick Williams, 53, has had a dozen arrests since March alone – the latest of more than 40 arrests made in 1984, police sources said.
And yet he keeps getting released without bail.
“He’s a prolific pickpocket who has been hunting tourists and workers in Times Square for over 30 years,” a Manhattan police officer complained to The Post.
“There’s no consequence, so he’s moving on.”
Another police officer said: “He’s definitely targeting the area and attacking the most innocent people – tourists who are hard to believe are naïve when it comes to crime in this city.
“Thefts are through the roof,” the source said.
Records show Williams was last arrested on Aug. 19 and charged with fourth-degree grand larceny and possession of a weapon for allegedly opening an unsuspecting transit driver’s purse while attempting to steal her wallet, records show.
In this case, too, he was released without bail.
Just 10 days before the NYPD had moved to Twitter to celebrate how he got Williams off the street after his 11th arrest this year alone – only to watch him walk free.
Manhattan prosecutors asked for $30,000 bail, but the judge ordered Williams released on supervised release, records show.
In that case, Williams had been charged with a series of robberies, including the July 18 incident in which he allegedly snatched a wallet from a woman’s backpack on a number 6 train.
The next day, he allegedly stole another woman’s wallet in Times Square.
“Something has to be done to keep such criminals in prison,” said another police officer. “It’s a distorted justice system where the system cares more about the criminals than the victims.”
Former NYPD Sgt. Joseph Giacalone, now a professor of criminal justice at John Jay College, said Williams belongs behind bars.
“He needs to be put in jail,” Giacalone said. “He can’t be released on bail and he has to go to Rikers Island and sit there and wait for those cases to come up.
“I mean, how many more?” he said. “Apparently he hasn’t learned his lesson.”
Times Square Alliance President Tom Harris said tackling crime in the busy tourist mecca is vital as the city returns to normal after COVID-19
“With law enforcement and prosecutors lacking the basic tools to ensure safety, we will continue to see incidents like this, and they will harm our city and our city’s recovery,” Harris told The Post.
William’s attorney could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
https://nypost.com/2022/09/07/this-pickpocket-has-been-lifting-from-times-square-tourists-workers-for-30-years/ This pickpocket has been stealing tourists and workers from Times Square for 30 years