Teen suspect in chain snatchings escapes, prompting subway shutdown before being caught

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(PIX11) — A teenager suspected in a string of chain snatchings in the Bronx escaped police custody Monday morning as he was being arrested anew by two NYPD officers. 

Vincens Vuktilaj 17, of the Bronx, was being re-arrested because a new robbery victim came forward. Cops were bringing him down the stairs at his residence at 746 St. Nicholas Ave. about 10 a.m. when he knocked them down and got away while in handcuffs.

The suspect bolted toward the 145th Street subway station, leading authorities to shut several subway lines.  Cops say a train conductor saw him in the subway.


Service on the A and C trains was suspended between 59th Street-Columbus Circle and 168th Street in both directions.

Service was also suspended on the B line between Brighton Beach and 145h Street, the D line between 34th Street-Herald Square and 161st Street-Yankee Stadium in both directions.

Subway service has since been restored with residual delays.

The suspect was later arrested not far from where he escaped in Harlem.


Police investigate at the scene of the prisoner escape in Harlem. (Erica Pitzi)