New York City’s famous “professional booster” who had been arrested and released without bail over 100 times for repeatedly stealing was finally locked up on Friday night for assault.
The New York Post reports that 42-year-old Michelle McKelley had again been caught in the middle of a theft at the Duane Reade at West 125th Street and Lenox Avenue by local police. As the officers tried to make the arrest, Mckelley started “kicking, biting, scratching and spitting” at the cops and attacking the offices in an attempt to flee.
McKelley was charged with two counts of assault in the second degree, petit larceny, and criminal possession of stolen property. The District Attorney requested a $25,000 bond but her bail was set at $5,000. A female officer said she was in pain from where McKelley bit her on the shoulder and the police were treated for injuries at St. Luke’s Hospital.
Fox News reports that McKelley’s last arrest for theft was on June 25, but she was released without bail as Manhattan Judge Charlotte Davidson cited New York state’s 2019 bail reform law which says misdemeanor crimes, such as “petit larceny,” aren’t eligible for monetary bail.
On May 25, McKelley had been busted for stealing from the same Rite Aid pharmacy store on ten different occasions since April 21. A cop told the New York Post, “What are they waiting for 200 arrests to hold her? When does it stop? It’s making a mockery of the system.”
The grand tally of Mckelley’s sprees from the Rite Aid on Second Avenue and East 96th Street between April and May was $1375 of stolen goods overall. Highlights include her theft of “10 summer coolers,” worth a total of $350, on April 29th.
She used a suitcase in a May 17th heist and looted “denim leggings, multiple bottles of body wash, a number of air fresheners and other products.”
The New York Post caught up with her in February when Mckelley’s arrest count was up to 97. In an interview with the suspect, she said, “basically when you take something, they call that ‘petty larceny’. Anything that’s under $1000 is considered petty larceny. Anything that’s over $1000 is considered grand larceny.” Even the red shirt she wore for the interview with the outlet at that time, was stolen.
Court officials said they had tried placing Mckelley under the care of the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES) but that didn’t hinder her acts of thievery. Mckelley’s track record also includes 27 failures to appear in court over various prior charges.
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