Bronx man charged in shoplifting spate: DA

REGO PARK — Queens District Attorney Richard Brown announced a Bronx man has been charged in a pick-pocketing spree preying on shoppers in central Queens over the past year.

Brown said Walter Del Rosario, 49, a Hunts Point resident, was arraigned in seven larceny cases last week.

“It is alleged that the defendant targeted victims with strollers or approached victims while their minds were preoccupied on matters other than their immediate surroundings,” Brown said in a statement. “Queens County has long enjoyed the distinction of being a shoppers’ mecca and the defendant’s alleged actions not only hurt the people he purportedly fleeced, but the reputation of the borough itself.”

Del Rosario’s attorney could not immediately be reached for comment.

Brown said Del Rosario first struck near Panera Bread last Aug. 26 in Rego Park, where he allegedly swiped a phone from a pocketbook hanging off the stroller of a 34-year-old woman.

He then allegedly stole phones and wallets from customers in the Elmhurst Target, Sports Lane in Rego Park, Love Culture in Elmhurst, New York Sports Club in Forest Hills, a Flushing shop and Woodside cafe.

If convicted, Del Rosario faces up to 25 years in prison, according to Brown.

More from Around New York