Cops: Man robbed woman, 18, and man, 75, within 2 hours on North Broad

Joseph Smith allegedly robbed two people
Joseph Smith, 31, allegedly robbed two people Sept. 18 in less than two hours.
Credit: Philadelphia Police Department

Philadelphia police on Wednesday arrested Joseph Smith, 31, for allegedly robbing two people in less than two hours Sept. 18.

Investigators said the first incident happened around 5:45 p.m., when officers responded to 2401 N. Broad St. in North Philadelphia for a report of a robbery in progress.

There, they were met by the victim, who said he was inside the Getty gas station and mini market buying lottery tickets when someone came from behind and punched him in the right side of the face, causing him to fall to the floor.

The victim said that, as he laid on the floor, the suspect continued to kick and punch him in his head and body.

The man then allegedly fled with the victim’s lottery tickets and $40 in cash.

The victim was taken to Temple University Hospital, where he was treated and released.

Police said the second robbery occurred shortly before 7:15 p.m., when an 18-year-old woman and her friend were walking just several blocks away on the 2000 block of North Broad Street and were approached by an unknown man.

The man allegedly tapped the victim on her shoulder and, when she turned around, grabbed her bag.

When the woman resisted, police said the man punched her in the face, knocking her to the ground.

He then allegedly took her bag and fled on foot.

Investigators said a nearby witness heard the woman screaming and saw the assailant running away.

The witness chased the man and tackled him to the ground until Temple University police officers arrived.

He was then arrested and identified as Smith.

Police on Wednesday released surveillance video of the robbery at the Getty station, which they said just recently became available to investigators.

Though numerous tips were received, a detective with the Central Detectives Division recognized Smith as the suspect in that crime, according to investigators.

Smith, of the 6600 block of North 17th Street, has already been charged with robbery with the threat of immediate bodily injury, theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, simple assault and reckless endangerment in connection with robbery of the 18-year-old woman.

He was jailed on 10 percent of $10,000 bail and is next due in court for a preliminary hearing Oct. 3.

Smith was on Wednesday still awaiting charges in connection with the robbery of the 75-year-old man.


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