Ex-inmate turned actor accused in NY `dynamite' robberies
By Jim Fitzgerald
Associated Press Writer
An aspiring actor who landed a "Law and Order" part after his release from Sing Sing prison has been charged in a series of robberies in which police say he claimed to be wrapped in dynamite sticks.
David Wayne, 47, of Croton-on-Hudson, was arrested Friday after a foot chase following the holdup of a drug store in Hartsdale, a northern suburb of New York City, said Capt. Joseph Delio of the Greenburgh Police Department, which covers Hartsdale. Wayne was carrying cash from the robbery and a BB pistol made to look like an automatic weapon, Delio said Monday.
In five previous robberies or attempts since Nov. 17, the robber opened a coat to reveal what looked like dynamite sticks wrapped around him. Greenburgh Police Chief John Kapica said Wayne told police he used highway flares, not dynamite, in other robberies.
Wayne was arraigned Saturday on charges of robbing two restaurants and a drug store. He was jailed pending a Tuesday court appearance and did not yet have a lawyer, Delio said.
Wayne spent 14 years in prison for robbery, and while he was at Sing Sing he took part in the Rehabilitation Through the Arts program. He was released in April 2005 and appeared on "Law & Order" last May as a best-selling, once-imprisoned author who denounced racism and gang violence. He also has done some local acting, including a play called "The Exonerated," which tells the stories of innocent death-row inmates.
In a profile in The Journal News at that time, Wayne talked about his volunteer work with boys having trouble in school.
"I owe it to the kids to tell them my experience, and let them know they will wind up the same way if they continue their behavior," he said.