BROOKLYN, N.Y. — An 87-year-old woman is in the hospital after police say she was punched and robbed at her own apartment in Brooklyn while waiting for her home health aide to arrive Tuesday.
The home invasion happened at the New York City Housing Authority's Haber Houses just after 7 a.m. Tuesday, according to police.
The woman was struck with a closed fist, and the home ransacked, according to police. She was later hospitalized.
A relative identified the victim as Luybov Faynshteyn, a Jewish immigrant who faced persecution in communist Russia.
Faynshteyn is disabled and relies on home health aides. The relative said the attack happened when Faynshteyn opened the door, thinking her health aide had arrived, as is routine.
The intruder ransacked her apartment looking for valuables. Marina Fedorovsky translated for her aunt as she returned home from getting treatment.
”There is bruising, and this (orbital) bone is broken so she will probably need surgery,” Fedorovsky said.
Faynshteyn had left her door cracked open for a home health aide to enter, as was her routine.
“He just hit her so badly but she was able to get to it but in a panic button,” Fedorovsky said.
Faynshteyn was transported to the hospital after being punched so many times, but a CT scan showed she is expected to be OK.
Neighbors told PIX11 security at the NYCHA building for older residents has been a problem for a while. Many doors have broken locks and security is inattentive of people coming and going.
Fedorovsky said fortunately it seems like her aunt— a jew who survived the pogroms of the communist Soviet Union before coming to the United States— has once again survived something horrible.
“She’s very sweet good person, and she never did anything to anybody,” she said. “This should not happen to good people.”
A man is described as a male in his 40s, with a beard and mustache; last seen wearing a black hooded sweater, a dark colored hooded jacket, beige pants, black sneakers and he was pulling a black wheeled suitcase.
Submit tips to police by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visiting www.nypdcrimestoppers.com, or texting 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. Spanish-speaking callers are asked to dial 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).
Clarification: Police identified the victim as being 88, but a relative told PIX11 she is 87 years old.