2001-05-30 / Front Page

Cemetery Headstones Toppled, Woman Mugged

Cemetery Headstones
Toppled, Woman Mugged

A Jackson Heights man who attacked and robbed a 46-year-old Astoria woman in St. Michael’s Cemetery on Monday also knocked over 65 head stones for no special reason, police of the 114th Precinct in Astoria reported yesterday.

The robbery victim, Christina Martynowicz, who had been visiting a grave, later picked 24-year-old Alexander Bedoya out of a precinct lineup after his apprehension by Detective Teresa Abberton. He was charged with robbery in the third degree for taking $5 from his victim and also with cemetery desecration and criminal mischief.

According to Dwayne Palmer, Community Affairs officer with the 114th Precinct, Bedoya’s arrest occurred after a priest of the Greek Orthodox faith came in to the station house to report that many headstones had been toppled in the cemetery, located at 72-02 Astoria Blvd., Jackson Heights.

Detective Abberton went out to investigate and found Bedoya in the cemetery. Under questioning, he admitted he had toppled the headstones, but said he didn’t know why he did it.

Meanwhile, Martynowicz had come into the station house to complain that she had been robbed in the cemetery. When Abberton brought Bedoya in to charge him with knocking down the headstones, he was put in a lineup and Martynowicz identified him as her attacker. Reports indicated that Martynowicz was robbed of $5.

—John Toscano

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