Modesto Cotto told us he had just returned from cashing his social security check around the block from the Jefferson Houses in East Harlem when 2 men casually entered his building just after 3 o'clock Thursday. Modesto says all of a sudden, they were on the stairs attacking him.
He says one of the men had him a choke hold. The other started feeling around for the wallet in his pocket and it contained a whole month's cash - $1,300.
Police from the 23rd precinct spent the day looking for the suspects. In surveillance video, they can be seen running from the building. One is bald in a black jacket. The other is wearing a blue shirt and an orange back-pack.
The victim, a father with 15 grandchildren and great grand-children who drove a city bus for 23 years without a single incident, still can't believe his close call, but his wife of 58 years is grateful that he is okay.
The first suspect is described as a Hispanic male, around 30 years old. His is approximately 5-foot-9 and weighs 180 pounds. He was seen wearing a blue shirt with white lettering and white sleeves, gray sweatpants, black sneakers and carrying an orange backpack.
The second suspect is a Hispanic male, also around 30, standing 6-foot-2 and weighing 200 pounds. The man, who was bald, was wearing a black jacket with a light colored collar, blue jeans and black sneakers.
Anyone with information in regards to this robbery is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS.
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