MANHATTAN — The NYPD is asking for the public’s help to catch a charismatic, cunning and incredibly dangerous man.
Ruben Pizarro, 23, is wanted for murder, attempted robbery and a non-fatal shooting. Pizarro has a lengthy rap sheet, according to police, and has been arrested at least 23 times. His prior offenses include attempted murder, assault, reckless endangerment and narcotics crimes.
He’s from the Bronx, which is where he has committed most of the alleged crimes, but police said he has also wreaked havoc in Manhattan.
Most recently, he held a driver at gunpoint on Sherman Street in Hudson Heights, Manhattan on New Year’s Eve, police said. He demanded a ride to the Bronx and allegedly told the victim that if he reported it, he’d kill him and his whole family. Once in the Bronx, Pizarro held another man at gunpoint and attempted to rob him, but the victim struggled and Pizarro allegedly shot him, according to police. The man survived.
On Nov. 24, police said Pizarro got caught on tape murdering a long-time enemy in the Bronx. The shocking video showed a group of men chasing another man, David Rivera, through a parking lot. Rivera ended up with his back against the wall of a daycare, where the group riddled his body with bullets. The shooting happened at around 9 a.m. Parents were reportedly dropping off their children at the daycare as the murder occurred.
Despite his long rap sheet, cops said Pizarro has been able to escape conviction time and time again. He has gone to trial at least four times, according to police, who attribute his cunning to charisma and terrified witnesses.
“Unfortunately he’s testified in the past and he’s beaten everything that he’s been charged with,” NYPD Lt. Det. Richard Gibson said.
Gibson said the man murdered in November had been shot by Pizarro at least three times prior, but each time the victim refused to share information that could have led to an arrest.
“Ruben Pizarro is a charismatic guy,” he added, “when you look at him you’re not looking in the face of a stone-cold killer, you’re looking in the face of a regular guy that you would talk to on the street everyday.”
On the street in the Bronx in 2013, police showed another video of Pizarro taking a gun from a friend and firing indiscriminately towards a busy street. Cops said he got into a fight, and when his assailants fled, he opened fire.
The FBI and U.S. Marshalls are currently hunting for Pizarro.
The NYPD is offering a $2,500 reward for information. They warn you not to approach him, but to call 1-800-577-8477 (TIPS).