Thief caught after punching restaurant manager who tried to arrest him: Elmwood Park PD

A restaurant manager in Elmwood Park was punched in the face as he tried to arrest a woman who had just stolen $10 from the tip jar, authorities said.

Darcea Collins, 37, of Paterson, had actually walked into the Hook & Reel at Elmwood Park shopping center earlier on Monday and jumped in without paying, police chief Michael Foligno said.

She returned around 7 p.m. and was heading for the front door with the money when the 30-year-old manager tried to lock her, Foligno said.

Security video shows Collins belting the manager and fleeing to Broadway, the chef said.

Responding officers found her near the Orange Avenue bus stop, he said.

Collins, who already had a criminal history of assaults — and was wanted on a Fair Lawn warrant — “began walking in traffic, acting erratically and adopting an aggressive stance,” Foligno said.

At that point, the officers took her into custody, he said.

Police charged Collins with theft and sent her to Bergen County Jail, where she remained on Tuesday awaiting her first appearance in Hackensack Central Court.

The manager refused medical attention, Foligno said.


SEE ALSO: Two men were brutally beaten and robbed in Westwood by twin brothers from Ridgewood and two companions – all for a cellphone and a six-pack of beers – authorities have charged.


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