NYC serial thief accused of 23 more shoplifts after getting let off by progressive DA

Alvin Bragg's office said that it would have been "a waste of resources" to bring forward every charge.

A New York City serial shoplifter previously let off by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg has been arrested yet again, after allegedly committing 27 additional heists following dozens of previous busts. 

Prosecutors say Wilfredo Ocasio, 44, was held on bail Tuesday for stealing over $5,000 in merchandise from three separate Duane Reade convenience stores over the course of multiple weeks, the New York Post reported. Police sources alleged that Ocasio was caught red-handed at a location of the corner store and pharmacy in the Financial District, and charged with crimes against two other locations in Lower Manhattan.

Ocasio, who has already been to state prison twice for rape and robbery, reportedly has 33 busts since mid-August after being arrested in November for 23 separate shoplifts from two Duane Reade outlets.

However, DA Bragg's office at the time charged the convict with just two counts for all the dozens of busts.

At the time, they told the Post that it would have been "a waste of resources" to bring forward every charge.

The NYPD Detective's Endowment Association made themselves clear on their stance on the handling of the case by Bragg.

"Nobody should be surprised that Mr. Ocasio has been once again arrested — this time on 27 [petit] larceny charges," said Paul DiGiacomo, president of the organization. "Why would he stop when there are absolutely no consequences?"

If convicted, Ocasio would only have to serve a maximum of two years incarcerated under New York State law even if he is convicted of every charge, a spokesperson for Bragg's office said.

Ocasio was arraigned on a third-degree grand larceny charge "which includes 27 incidences of thefts from the three" Duane Reade locations, Assistant District Attorney Jesse Castaneda said.

"The defendant continuously steals property from the same stores," Castaneda said. "[He] has demonstrated an unwillingness to abide by the law and all court orders."

"The defendant is now well known to the managers of all three of these stores as a regular shoplifter," Castaneda added in requesting a $25,000 bail.

Judge Rachel Pauley ended up setting the bail at $5,000 cash, or $15,000 bond.

The over $5,000 in stolen goods were never recovered, the prosecutor said.

Some of the items included candy bars, donuts, Monster and Red Bull energy drinks, and holiday novelties such as gingerbread houses, police said.

According to the suspect's attorney, Ocasio is "badly in need of mental health," and shouldn't be remanded to the notoriously dangerous Rikers Island jail due to the non-violent nature of his alleged crimes. 

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