A New York City thief claims he didn’t exactly steal an iPhone from a toddler in Greenwich Village in March.
Feliberto Ramirez, 53, was convicted of grand larceny and sentenced to one and a half to three years in prison Wednesday.
“Yeah, I f--ked up, I took the phone,” Ramirez told police after his arrest.
“But I offered the kid two dollars. He shook his head, said yeah, and he handed me the phone.”
Ramirez, who is homeless, swiped the phone from 3-year-old Aidan Talley of New Jersey, while the boy's mother was shopping on Broadway. The phone belonged to the boy’s mother, Kira Talley, 36, who was standing just arms-length away from the boy when the theft occurred.
Police said Ramirez patted Aidan on the head, told the boy “Thank you” and tossed him a couple bucks.
"Aidan said, 'Mommy, he took your phone,'" Talley told the New York Post. “I was within arm’s reach, literally could reach out and touch him and it happened so fast.”
Customers in clothing store chased the thief, but they weren’t able to catch him.
Police were able to track the smartphone via an app called Find My iPhone. Ramirez apparently traded the phone in the Bronx for $50 in order to support a drug habit, police said.
They later found him in a homeless shelter on Bowery Street near East Third.
“He’s was drug addict — he needed the money for drugs,” a police source told The Post. “That’s about as desperate as you can get.”
When he appeared in Manhattan Supreme Court, Ramirez was reportedly smirking and swaggering. The sentence given by Judge Ronald Zweibel was the one recommended by prosecutors.
Ramirez had been arrested for larceny and trespassing in the past.