A dispute in Sag Harbor between two Brooklyn men, passengers in a moving car, ended Sunday morning with one of them in handcuffs facing a felony charge of criminal mischief.
Benjamin R. Ruhland, who was in the front seat of a 2004 BMW, began arguing with Gig Suarez, seated in the back, and the dispute quickly escalated, according to police. As Michael Quilty was driving south on Main Street, Mr. Ruhland, in an attempt to throw Mr. Suarez out of the car, tried to grab the wheel, police said, at which point Mr. Quilty pulled it over.
All three got out, but Mr. Ruhland jumped back in and tried, unsuccessfully, to start the car. When Mr. Quilty took out his cellphone Mr. Ruhland got out of the car and tried to grab it, and when Mr. Quilty refused to let go of it he bit his hand. He then threw the phone violently to the ground, smashing it, grabbed the car keys, ran across the street, and threw them into Otter Pond.
Besides the felony charge, Mr. Ruhland is facing a misdemeanor charge of petty larceny in connection with the broken cellphone, as well as harassment in the second degree, a violation.
A cellphone also made the police news over the weekend in Montauk, when an alleged thief was captured in front of the Memory Motel. An East Hampton Town police officer searched Xavier Bonilla-Alfalla after a witness claimed to have seen him reach into a woman’s purse by the bar and pull out her cellphone.
Mr. Bonilla-Alfalla was found to have three cellphones on him, police said.
“You’re charged with stealing two iPhone 5s while at a bar in Montauk,” Justice Lisa Rana observed at his arraignment later that morning. She told him he was facing two misdemeanor counts of possession of stolen property.
Mr. Bonilla-Alfalla appeared quite hoarse and seemed to have difficulty speaking. Justice Rana asked him where he worked. He named two Montauk restaurant-bars as his employers.
Mr. Bonilla-Alfalla appeared confused by the proceedings, asking the justice at one point, “Then I’m not going to be charged?”
“You are going to be charged,” she answered, and set bail at $300.
Town police picked up Israel Garcia, 35, of Southampton last Thursday morning on a bench warrant and charged him with false personation and unlicensed driving. An officer stopped his 2002 Chevrolet after a license plate reader signaled that the driver might be a wanted man.
The officer reported that Mr. Garcia handed over an identification card for a Patrocino Ruiz. The officer warned him that if that was not his true identity he would be charged with a misdemeanor, at which point a passer-by noticed what was happening and told the officer he knew the man in the car, and that his name was Israel Garcia. The officer then found a credit card in that name in the driver’s wallet.
Bail was set at $500 later that morning. Mr. Garcia was turned over to New York State police on the basis of the arrest warrant.