A suspect connected to a series of attacks and robberies on elderly Russian women in Midwood was named and indicted with 20 counts, including hate crimes, according to acting District Attorney Eric Gonzalez.
Akmaljon Abakulov, 27, of Midwood, allegedly sought out older women to push around and rob, according to Gonzalez.
“This defendant allegedly targeted older women to rob because he believed they were easy marks. Cowardly attacks such as these will not be tolerated in Brooklyn,” said Gonzalez. “We will work vigorously to prosecute all crimes based on age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation and ethnicity. ”
He started his alleged crime spree on October 12, at around 4pm when a 64-year-old woman withdrew $700 from an ATM on Kings Highway. She put the cash in a white envelope and walked away. Abakulov followed her, pushed her against a parked van, and snatched the envelope from her purse, according to Gonzalez.
Nearly two weeks later, on October 24, at around 4:45pm, a 61-year-old victim noticed Abakulov around East 16th Street and Avenue P. She then walked toward East 14th Street between Avenues O and P but didn’t notice he was following her.
She then felt someone tugging at her purse from behind. She turned around, saw Abakulov’s face, and struggled with the bag before he pushed her to the ground. He left with her purse, and she sustained injuries in the attack, according to Gonzalez.
His final robbery came on November 1, in the T.J. Maxx on East 15th Street. Another 61-year-old victim placed her purse in a shopping cart and placed her coat over it. She left it unattended for a moment and came back to realize her wallet was taken. She called the police who found surveillance video of Abakulov taking the wallet.
Abakulov allegedly came back to the store the next day and the manager recognized him and alerted the police. Authorities came and arrested Abakulov, according to Gonzalez.
Abakulov was charged with a myriad of crimes including second-degree robbery, third-degree robbery, grand larceny, and assault — all as hate crimes. He’s being held on $125,000 bail and will return to court on January 25.