‘Aggressive’ panhandler robs Yale student of pocket money

A Yale undergraduate was the victim of an “aggressive panhandling incident” at 9:30 p.m. on the corner of Wall and Temple streets Sunday, Yale Police Department Chief Perrotti wrote Monday afternoon in a campuswide e-mail.

Although the incident was reported as a robbery, there was limited physical contact between the panhandler and the student and only a “few single dollar bills” were stolen, YPD spokesman Sgt. Steven Woznyk said. Woznyk added that the student, who was not injured during the encounter, reported the robbery shortly after it happened.

According to Perrotti’s e-mail, the panhandler was persistent in asking the student for money. When the student initially declined, he blocked the student’s path and demanded money.

The student offered the man money, which he grabbed out of the student’s hand — the only physical contact between the two individuals. The perpetrator then walked away from the area, Woznyk said.

After the incident was reported, YPD officers surveyed the area for witnesses and possible suspects, Woznyk said. The panhandler was described “as being 6’1” tall, stocky build, wearing a black overcoat and dark jeans,” Perrotti’s e-mail explains.

Yale police have neither made an arrest nor identified a suspect, but investigators have initiated a “detailed review” of the robbery in order to identify the perpetrator, Woznyk said.

On Feb. 16, an individual not affiliated with the University was robbed on the corner of Church and Wall streets. That same night, a Law School student was robbed on the corner of Edgewood Avenue and Dwight Street.

The assailants in both robberies flashed handguns, though it is unclear if the victims were held at gunpoint. Both victims escaped unharmed. The NHPD is investigating both Feb. 16 incidents.

In late January, a Calhoun student was the victim of an attempted robbery on cross campus. The student suffered a minor laceration on his arm when he resisted his assailant.

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