CHELSEA, Manhattan — An arrest has been made in the vandalism of several LinkNYC kiosks in Manhattan.
Police have charged 41-year-old Juan Rodriguez, of East 30th Street, New York, with multiple counts of criminal mischief.
Surveillance footage captured the man throwing bricks or other blunt objects at 42 WiFi LinkNYC kiosks throughout Manhattan.
Police were reported about the 9.5-foot-tall kiosks being smashed along 6th Ave, 8th Ave and 14th Street between last Tuesday to early this week.
Each screen was hit in the same way: a solid blow to both sides. The charging, phone, Wi-Fi and other functions of the kiosks appear to be unaffected.
LinkNYC’s Twitter account talked about how the kiosks help the homeless and those with low-income writing:
“LinkNYC provides a valuable public service to many of the city’s most vulnerable. When people vandalize Links, they impede on its ability to fund and deliver these services.”
However, the telecom companies that operate the roughly 1,700 kiosks are not exactly hurting for cash. The ads are expected to generate about a billion dollars over 12 years; the city gets half that money.
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).