A Ridgewood man was arraigned this week and charged with stabbing and carjacking a livery cab driver hours after robbing a grocery store at knifepoint, the Queens District Attorney said.
Kenneth Suden, 41, is facing charges stemming from two criminal complaints—one charging him with second-degree attempted murder, first-degree assault, first-degree robbery and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon; and the other one charging him with first-degree robbery. Bail was set Tuesday evening at $500,000 bond or $250,000 cash, according to a spokesman in the DA’s office. His next court date was scheduled for Oct. 10.
According to the charges, on Sept. 24, some time between 6:30 p.m. and 7:15 p.m., Suden robbed a grocery store on Putnam Avenue in Ridgewood at knifepoint. He allegedly stepped behind the counter, displayed a small knife and said, “They’re going to kill me if I don’t pay them back.” Suden then allegedly removed money from the cash register before fleeing on foot.
According to the second complaint, shortly after 1 a.m. on Sept. 25, livery cab driver Fernando Crespin-Santos, 30, picked up Suden in the Cypress Hills section of Brooklyn. When the vehicle was several blocks from Suden’s Ridgewood residence, Queens DA Richard Brown said, Suden allegedly placed a knife to Crespin-Santos’s throat and demanded money. Suden then allegedly stabbed Crespin-Santos repeatedly in his arms, legs and chest—causing several lacerations, a collapsed lung, a severed stomach and a severed liver—before Crespin-Santos managed to flee from the vehicle. Suden then allegedly jumped into the driver’s seat of the livery cab and drove off with the vehicle.
Crespin-Santos was transported to a local Queens hospital where he underwent multiple surgeries for his injuries and will require additional surgeries to fix the severed ligaments in his hands.
“The defendant is accused of committing two armed robberies within the space of hours, one of which left a hard-working New Yorker fighting for his life,” Brown said. “The defendant will now face the consequences of his alleged actions—a substantial amount of time behind bars if convicted.”
If found guilty in both cases, Suden faces up to 50 years in prison.
“To hear of this brutal stabbing is a shock and utterly disheartening,” said state Sen. Joe Addabbo Jr. (D-Howard Beach) shortly after the incident came to light. “A livery cab driver doing his job, actually anyone doing their job, should not be the victims of meaningless violence. I cross 69th Avenue and Fresh Pond Road quite often, and to think such a gruesome act went on right in our neighborhood is upsetting.”
By Michael V. Cusenza