Illegal immigrant attempts second boat theft in NYC after being released without bail

Reports suggest the man entered the country illegally through El Paso, Texas in 2022.


A homeless illegal immigrant who was arrested for stealing a New York Fire Department (FDNY) fireboat was released on Friday without bail immediately tried to steal another boat after release.  

On Friday morning, 22-year-old Juan Hernandez was released without bail by Judge Marva Brown after his initial arrest for joyriding on the Hudson River in the former FDNY-owned vessel the John J. Harvey. According to the New York Post, Hernandez immediately attempted to steal the nearby 133-foot lightship the Frying Pan, which houses a floating restaurant, following his release. 

A bar worker on the ship confronted Hernandez, who claimed he left his passport on board as a pretext to gain access.  

“I was like, ‘What the f–k are you doing here?’” said the worker, per the Post. ”I told him to go away. He started talking s–t, and he ran away.” 

Despite efforts to stop him, Hernandez fled the scene. Angela Krevey, co-owner of the restaurant, expressed frustration over the situation, highlighting the lack of police intervention despite Hernandez's suspicious behavior. 

“We called the police. The police said they couldn’t do anything because he’s a free man,” Krevey said. “If he was charged with two counts of grand larceny, why was he released from jail?”  

“I want my city back,” she added. 

According to the Post, it is not clear if Hernandez will be charged for his second attempt to steal a boat. Observers believe Hernandez may have mistaken the Frying Pan for the fire boat because of its color and where it was docked. 

Reports suggest that Hernandez is in the country illegally, having originated from Ecuador and passed through El Paso, Texas, in 2022. After initially being detained, Hernandez skipped his immigration court hearing and eventually ended up in New York City, according to law enforcement. 

Despite being detained for two counts of grand larceny related to the fireboat incident, Hernandez was released from jail. New York judges' non-cooperation agreement with ICE prevents them from holding migrants for federal authorities to detain them, contributing to Hernandez's release. 

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