Sunday, April 29, 2012

Seven Members Of A Family Die After Van Flips Off Highway Into Bronx Zoo

THE BRONX — Seven members of one family, including a set of grandparents and three grandchildren, were killed instantly when a van flipped off the Bronx River Parkway and fell 100 feet into a remote section of the Bronx Zoo Sunday afternoon, authorities and sources said.

The victims included an 84-year-old man and his 80-year-old wife, along with their two daughters — ages 45 and 39 — and three granddaughters, according to police. The youngest was in diapers, fire officals said. There were conflicting reports regarding the ages of the other two girls. Fire officials said they were 12 and 10; according to police they were 15 and 5.

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said that the 45-year-old woman was driving the white Honda Pilot with her 39-year-old sister in the passenger seat. Sources said they were on the way to a family gathering in The Bronx.

All of the victims had to be extricated from the crushed van and were pronounded dead at the scene, fire officials said.

Police were looking into the possibility of a tire blowout causing the van to lose control, hit a divider and fly over the guardrail, sources said.

"The injuries were quite horrific," said EMS Deputy Chief Howard Sickles. "In 30 years I've seen something like this once or twice. Everybody was taken aback by it because everybody has a relative, everybody knows a child and everybody has a grandparent. ... It's very upsetting."

Though fire officials did not know the van's exact speed, they said it appeared to have been going fast. Officials were investigating whether the passengers were wearing seatbelts.

A zoo spokeswoman said that that no animals or zoogoers were in the area of the crash, near East 180th Street at 12:30 p.m.

"The car fell in the perimeter of the zoo, in a woody area," the spokeswoman said. "No animals were there. No people were there."

Fire officials said the van plunged into an area overgrown with trees and bushes near the zoo's tram yard for its monorail.

"It hit something that caused it to go over the railing and it traveled a distance of maybe 75 to 80 feet before it hit the ground," said FDNY Deputy Chief Ronald Werner. "It fell 100 feet." He also noted that the car was going "at a high rate of speed."

Because of the conditions, officials dispatched several search teams, including police with dogs and helicopters, to extract the victims. One firefighter suffered minor injuries during the search.

"She was a good mother," said Pedro Martinez, an uncle of the driver's husband.  "They were a humble family. They worked hard."

Marjorie Brito, 27, a cousin of the husband, said of the woman, "She was the best mother and a good wife."

She said the woman's parents were visiting from the Dominican Republic and that the family was on their way to church.

"The [daughter] was always hugging her father," said Paul Pombur, 45, a co-worker of the husband's and a neighbor of the family. "He's got to be destroyed."

Last June, an accident on the Bronx River Parkway near the zoo caused an SUV to fall more than 20 feet into a parking lot after hitting a divider. No one died in that accident.

"In the coming weeks my office will reach out to the appropriate agencies to examine the safety issues on the Bronx River Parkway and to discuss potential solutions, such as road condition and barrier/fence height, to this issue," Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. said in a statement.

"My prayers, as well as those of my office and all Bronxites, go out to the families of the seven victims," he added. "Our thoughts are with them as they try to grasp the horrific tragedy that has befallen them."

With additional reporting by Gloria Dawson and Alan Neuhauser.

Man Killed By 7 Train In Corona

QUEENS — A man was struck and killed by a subway train in Corona early Sunday morning, police said.

The man, who was not immediately identified, was hit by a Manhattan-bound 7 train at 103rd Street and Roosevelt Avenue at 3:15 a.m., police said.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

It was not immediately clear how the man wound up on the tracks or if there was criminality.

By: DNAinfo

Saturday, April 28, 2012

FDNY Fights Two-Alarm Fire In Borough Park

NEW YORK - A two-alarm fire  that injured three people in Borough Park took more than an hour to get under control Friday evening, fire officials said.

The blaze broke out on the top floor of a six-story apartment building at 4812 14th Ave. around 8:30 p.m., an FDNY spokesman said.

A second alarm was called 18 minutes later and the fire was declared under control just after 9:30 p.m., officials said.

Three civilians suffered monor injuries and the cause of the fire is under investigation, according to the FDNY.

Teen Stabbed In Bronx Subway Station Over Cell Phone

A missing cell phone led to a 19-year-old being stabbed in a Bronx subway station Saturday morning.

The teen was stabbed in the chest at around 4 a.m. Saturday.

It happened on the southbound 4-train platform at the Fordham Road station.

Investigators say the victim noticed his phone was missing after he and his friend woke up from a nap on the train.

The victim saw another rider with what he thought was his phone, and a confrontation between the two led to a fight.

The teen was taken to Saint Barnabas Hospital and in critical but stable condition.

By: NY1 News

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Workers Hurt In Fall From TriBeCa Sidewalk Shed

TRIBECA — Three workers fell from a sidewalk shed at a construction site erected outside a building on Broadway Thursday, officials said.

The victims were hurt at 366 Broadway just after 9 a.m., an FDNY spokesman said.

The workers' injuries were not serious, the spokesman said. They were conscious and alert, he added, and taken to New York Downtown Hospital in stable condition.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Buildings said the workers were hurt while erecting the 10-foot-high shed.

The contractor at the site, Spring Scaffolding, was issued a violation for "failing to safeguard all persons and property affected by construction operations," the spokeswoman said.

Spring Scaffolding declined repeated requests for comment.

By: DNAinfo

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Queens Driver Charged In Hit-And-Run That Critically Injured Man

A Queens man is under arrest after police say he struck and critically injured a man with his car Monday night before driving away.

Ian Glasgow, 59, is charged with leaving the scene of an accident.

Police say he was driving along Woodhaven Boulevard around 7 p.m. when he hit a 50-year-old man near Jamaica Avenue.

The victim was taken to Jamaica Hospital in critical condition.

"It hit him and he went up about 15 feet in the air and did a few turns and you just sneakers flying left and right and he was just on the floor," said one witness.

Police say Glasgow fled the scene but was taken into custody a few blocks away.

By: NY1 News

Monday, April 23, 2012

Garbage Truck Takes Out Line Of Cars On Lower East Side

No injuries were reported early Monday after a private sanitation truck slammed into a group of parked cars on a Manhattan street.

The New York City Fire Department says the accident happened around 4:30 a.m. on Delancy and Willet Street on the Lower East Side.

Witnesses say the Imperial Sanitation truck was driving erratically when it smashed into eight cars.

Amateur video sent to NY1 shows the cars' smashed front ends and resulting debris on the street.

NY1 has reached out to the Imperial Sanitation Corporation for comment.

By: NY1 News

Woman Hit By D Train, Critically Injured At Herald Square

MANHATTAN — An elderly woman was struck by a train and critically injured at the Herald Square subway station on Monday, MTA officials said.

The 75-year-old victim was hit by a Bronx-bound D train at the station, located at 34th Street and Sixth Avenue, about 10:15 a.m., MTA and FDNY officials said.

After she was pulled from the south end of the tracks, paramedics rushed her to Bellevue Hospital, where she was critical, an FDNY spokesman said.

After being temporarily rerouted, D train service was restored a short time later with a few residual delays, an MTA spokesman said.

Officials could not confirm how the woman ended up on the track or whether any criminality is suspected.

Sent from my iPhone

Man Killed In Brooklyn Triple Shooting

BROOKLYN — Three people were shot — one fatally — in a Crown Heights building late Sunday, police said.

Verdell Walker, 23, was inside of 1912 Pacific St. with two unidentified people when shots rang out just before 11 p.m., police said.

Walker was hit in the chest and rushed to Kings County Hospital, where he was pronounced dead a short time later, police said.

A 22-year-old woman took a bullet to the chest, and a 20-year-old man was shot several times in the body, police added.

Both victims were taken to Kings County Hospital, police said. The woman remained in critical condition, cops noted, while the male victim was listed in stable condition.

Police were looking into what sparked the shooting. No one has been arrested.

A police source said Walker had run-ins with the law, though it was unclear if that criminal history was linked to Sunday's shooting. Walker has 11 prior arrests in the city including charges for robbery, criminal possession of a weapon and drugs, the source added.

The other two victims also have arrest records, the source added.

BY: DNAinfo

Saturday, April 21, 2012

9 injured in Midtown car accident

At least nine people are injured in a Midtown car accident Saturday night.

The accident happened around 9:15 p.m. on 6th Avenue and West 42nd Street. Two cars crashed into each other, causing one car to overturn onto the sidewalk.

The overturned car injured several pedestrians.

The NYPD said three people are critically injured and three are in serious condition but have non life-threatening injuries.

Three other people suffered minor injuries. All were taken to Bellevue Hospital.

Two Dead Following Upper Manhattan Blaze

A man and a woman are dead following a fire at the Marble Hill Houses in upper Manhattan.

Police say the 47-year-old man and the 46-year-old woman were in an apartment when flames broke out Friday.

It took firefighters about 45 minutes to get the fire under control.

Both victims were taken in critical condition to Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, where they later died from their injuries.

Three other people and one firefighter were treated for minor injuries sustained in the blaze.

No criminality is suspected.

By: NY1 News

Fatal fire in Rockland County

Fire officials say a woman died in a fire Friday night in Rockland County.

Officials received a call around 9:20 p.m. of a fire at 7 Central Avenue in New City and found a heavy fire coming from the first floor of the house. Flames were also coming from the second floor and the front door of the home.

Officials said a 56-year-old man was able to escape from the blaze and told firefighters his 75-year-old mother was trapped on the second floor. The firefighters tried to get to the second floor to find her but were unable to get through the flames.

The unidentified woman was later found dead.

New City Fire Chief Flynn said it took around 70 firefighters from several local towns about 30 minutes to put the fire under control.

Fire investigators and detectives are on scene to evaluate the cause of the fire.

Met Guard Shoots Self in Leg Cleaning Weapon, Museum Says

MANHATTAN — A security guard at theMetropolitan Museum of Art shot himself in the leg on Friday afternoon while cleaning his service weapon, museum officials said.

The guard, who was not named, accidentally discharged his gun while cleaning it in a basement room that is not accessible to the public, according to Met spokesman Harold Holzer.

The museum's armed guards are not allowed to take their guns home and service them in the basement the world famous Fifth Avenue institution, Met officials explained. 

The man, described to be in his 50s, was taken to New York-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center, according to fire officials, who were called to the Met shortly before 3 p.m.

The guard is expected to be fine, Holzer said.

"It was an accident and accidents happen," said a Met maintenance worker Kathy, who has worked at the museum for 32 years and declined to give her last name. "He definitely didn't want to hurt himself."

She said she knew the victim in passing.

"He's very pleasant, always saying 'hi' to everyone," she said. "He's a hard worker."

By: DNAinfo

Police In Queens Shoot Suspect After He Pulls Gun During Chase

Police shot a man in Queens Friday after he allegedly pulled a gun on three plainclothes detectives.

Tasheen Walker, 30, was being sought by police in connection with a shooting in Cambria Heights.

Police say they found Walker in a car in Queens Village Friday night. Detectives gave chase and caught up with Walker, who then allegedly pointed a loaded .380 caliber gun at them.

One of the detectives fired at Walker, hitting him in the torso.

Walker was taken to the hospital in stable condition

He faces charges of criminal possession of a weapon and menacing.

By: NY1 News

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

NYPD Opens Anti-Terror Dog Training Facility In Long Island City

LONG ISLAND CITY — The NYPD is looking to take a bit out of terrorism, with a new dog training facility on Northern Boulevard.
The state-of-the-art facility, which will house the dogs as well as provide training facilities, is taking aim at threats against the city's mass transit system, Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said Wednesday.
"We have had 14 plots against New York City since Sept. 11, and five of them were aimed at our transit system, the second busiest in the world," Kelly said during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the facility, near 39th Avenue. "Five million [people] a day use the system."
"The dogs that we have now...are a tremendous aid in helping us not [only] in suppressing crimes but also to act as an important tool to address the issue of terrorists," he said. 
Kelly said the team of crime-fighting dogs includes two vapor wake dogs, which can sniff and trace on-the-move explosives in a crowd. Normal sniffing dogs can only detect stationary explosive and need to get really close to the substance, Kelly said.
Vapor wake dogs need a special training facility, Kelly said, to develop and hone this ability.
"This facility here enables us to train them, to house them and to clean and take care of them medically in one state-of-the-art location," he said. 

By: DNAinfo

UPS Worker Critically Injured by SUV on Beekman Street

MANHATTAN — A UPS worker was in critical condition after being struck by an SUV on Beekman Street in Lower Manhattan Tuesday, police officials said.

The unidentified victim was struck from behind just before 4:40 p.m. in front of 15 Beekman St., near Nassau Street and was rushed to New York Downtown Hospital nearby.

"The car jumped the curb and pinned him against the building," said Beekman Pub owner Ed Robinson, who ran out of his bar after seeing the car in front of his building's window.

"When I came out, he was on the ground," Robinson said.

The worker was unconscious when rescuers arrived, fire officials said.

"He's in here all the time," Hector Revilla, of the nearby Downtown Pharmacy, said of the UPS worker. "He's a really nice guy."

"Everyone in the building really likes him," said Flora Kaplan, who has lived across the street for 30 years. "It's shocking. You're just doing your job and 'boom.'"

Police said the driver remained on the scene and no criminality was suspected.

By: DNAinfo

FDNY members save man floating in Hudson River

Fast-acting FDNY members saved a severely hypothermic man as he floated in the Hudson off a Manhattan pier Tuesday afternoon, officials said.

The unidentified man, who is said to be around 25 years old, was in the water about 500 yards out from Pier 54 when passers-by spotted him around 7 p.m., the FDNY said.

Marine 1 Lt. Tom Piambino was heading out on patrol with Firefighters Robert Hogan and Paul Napolitano from their base near W. 13th St. when they saw onlookers jumping up and down and waving.

The crew leaped off their 140-foot patrol boat and hopped into their new Marine 1 Alpha, designed especially for the FDNY to make quick rescues.

"We saw someone in the water," Piambino said, "He was almost unconscious."

Normally, firefighters would throw on protective gear before jumping into the water.

"We didn't have any time to do that," Piambino quipped.

Hogan, who has 15 years on the job, jumped into the 50-degree water wearing only pants, a shirt and a life jacket and paddled his way over to the victim and brought the man back to the boat, Piambino said.

"He was suffering from hypothermia," Piambino continued. "He was pretty blue, he was responsive but he was incoherent...He was trying to tell me his name but I couldn't understand him."

The "terrified" victim was only able to mutter the words, "I'm very, very cold," Piambino recalled.

The team wrapped the fully-clothed man in blankets and gave him oxygen before he was taken to Bellevue Hospital where he was listed in critical but stable condition Tuesday night.

The Marine 1 Alpha - capable of clocking speeds up to 60 mph - aided in the quick eight-minute rescue, Piambino said.

"We zipped right around and spotted him right away," he said.

Although it was unclear how the man ended up in the river, Piambino noted that warmer weather brings more water rescues.

"It happens more than people might think," he said. 

Police: Queens Woman Shot While Walking With Daughter

A Queens woman is in the hospital after being shot in Astoria.

Police say the 31 year-old woman was walking with her 5-year-old daughter outside their apartment building when a bullet tore into her shoulder.

One witness says the neighborhood is no stranger to violence.

"All the time, at least once a week there's something going on here," he said. "Two weeks ago there was a stabbing. Every other day, like twice a week, there's fight going on. It's a lot of gang violence in the area too so that's probably the situation."

Investigators say they don't believe the woman was the intended target. Her daughter was not hurt.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Cop stabbed in Harlem; suspect arrested at scene Injuries not considered life-threatening

A city police officer was stabbed in head and wounded in a confrontation with an emotionally disturbed man in East Harlem Tuesday morning, police said.

The 26-year-old suspect was arrested nearby and the officer was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital in stable condition.

His wounds are not considered life-threatening.

The 10:45 a.m. incident occurred at Third Ave. and E. 107th St. when police were sent there to deal with a man described as mentally ill.

A police source said the man stabbed the cop once in the left side of the head and once in the arm.

The was nabbed two blocks away, at E. 109th St.

It wasn't immediately clear what prompted the attack.

Read more:

Three Injured In Midtown Car Crash

A cab collided with a tractor-trailer in a frightening early-morning crash Tuesday, injuring three and sending the taxi careening into a building, authorities and witnesses said.

The wreck occurred at the corner of Lexington Avenue and East 48th Street about 2 a.m., knocking over a traffic light and leaving a trail of twisted metal on the sidewalk, NYPD and FDNY officials said.

At least one of the vehicles jumped a curb and smashed into a Radisson Hotel at the intersection, shearing off the taxi's roof, a witness said.

"It was a terrible situation," said Eudoro Arguello, 50, who was working at a garage on 48th Street between Park and Lexington Avenue when he heard the loud crash. ''The police and fire trucks were all over. It was like a movie.''

The three injured individuals suffered minor lacerations in the incident and were brought to Bellevue Hospital for treatment, police said.

The crash is currently under investigation, cops added.

By: DNAinfo

Monday, April 16, 2012

Firefighter Dead, Others Injured in Three-Alarm Brooklyn Warehouse Fire

One firefighter was killed and several others injured while battling a three-alarm warehouse fire Monday in Brooklyn, New York.

Two firefighters were in critical condition and four were in serious condition when they were taken an area hospital, CBS 2 reports (

Sources told CBS 2 that a Fire Department of New York (FDNY) lieutenant was one of the firefighters inside the warehouse battling the fire. When he emerged he reportedly went into cardiac distress. He was taken to the hospital and died.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

13-Year-Old Cyclist Killed By Hit-And-Run Driver In Bensonhurst

BROOKLYN — A 13-year-old boy was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver in Bensonhurst Saturday afternoon just blocks from his home, police said.

The horrific accident unfolded in front of 8009 20th Ave., near 80th Street around 2:45 p.m., according to cops.

Investigators believe Henry Garcia, who lived nearby on 78th Street, was riding his bike north on 20th Avenue when he fell off.

He was then struck by a green Ford Explorer going the same direction that fled the scene, police said.

The boy was rushed to New York Hospital where he died.

No arrests have been made.


Deaf boy struck by a cab in Brooklyn

Police investigate an accident where a boy is fighting for his life after he was hit by a cab in Brooklyn.

5-year-old Timothy Keith, who is deaf, ran between two parked cars and was struck by a yellow cab in front of his horrified parents, who are also deaf.

The cab driver remained on the scene at Hicks Street in the Cobble Hill section and told police he couldn't stop in time.

Keith was taken to University Hospital of Brooklyn and has suffered brain damage.

The Keith's are making their first family trip to the city.

Police said no charges have been filed against the driver.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

N.J. brush fire disrupts rail service

 A large brush fire that broke out near some train tracks in northern New Jersey left one firefighter briefly hospitalized and disrupted train service in the area for two hours.

Roughly 40 firefighters battled the blaze in Glen Rock, which was reported just before 1:30 p.m. Saturday. While the cause was not immediately known, the fire wasn't believed to be suspicious.

New Jersey Transit shut down train service between Hawthorne and Ridgewood so firefighters could stretch hoses across the tracks. The fire was extinguished around 3:30 p.m.

The service disruption affected a northbound and a southbound train, which were held in place along the tracks. Passengers on those trains were placed on buses to continue their trip.

The injured firefighter, whose name was not released, was treated for heat exhaustion.


Massive 4-alarm fire in the Bronx

More than 20 firefighters and two civilians were injured when a four-alarm blaze ripped through four Bronx buildings Saturday afternoon

Fire officials said smoke and flames broke out around 1:15 p.m. at 726 Van Nest Avenue in the Morris Park section. The fire started at one building and then spread to the others and at one point, a ceiling collapsed trapping two firefighters inside.

"Two firefighters were rescued inside the fire building," said Fire Assistant Chief Ron Spadafora. The two firefighters sent to Jacobi Medical Center with minor injuries

200 firefighters swarmed the area and seven more firefighters were rushed to the hospital, many of them suffering from smoke inhalation -- bringing the total to nine in the hospital and 20 firefighters hurt in the aftermath.

All of the firefighters are expected to be ok.

"When you hear firefighters (calling) mayday, it gets the blood rising," Spadafora said.

Because the smoke was so thick the NYPD made neighbors stay away as far as possible. Police said at least 10 families are now homeless. Many of the people who live around here had a tough time even breathing.

Fire officials say no one else was hurt, although firefighters got here within minutes they say the flames and smoke were already in full force.

Witnesses said if the FDNY didn't act as quickly and coordinated as they did the entire block could have gone up in smoke.

"They got the fire hose up from the trucka and where able to get everything under control," said one local resident.

The FDNY said the cause of the fire is still under investigation and the local Red Cross is here helping those families now homeless.

NYPD find drugs, guns in Brooklyn home

Armed with a search warrant, the NYPD went to a house in Dyker Heights, Brooklym, on Thursday as part if a long-term narcotics investigation and found a cache of weapons and a pile of drugs.

Officers found cocaine, marijuana, prescription pills, a police scanner, eight firearms, two pellet guns, cash, and about 600 rounds of ammunition, the NYPD said.

The home is near a school and a church, police said.

Cops arrested Michael DePietro, 46, and charged him with criminal possession of a weapon, criminal possession of controlled substance, and criminal possession of marijuana.

The NYPD said these were the guns in the home:
Beretta 9mm (loaded) Smith & Wesson 40 cal. (loaded) .22 cal. handgun Phoenix Arms .22 cal. long rifle (loaded) Marlin 30-30 rifle Savage Arms .22 cal. rifle Marlin firearms 12 gauge shotgun .410 bore shotgun

Two Boys Injured When Wall Collapses In Vacant Lot

Two Brooklyn boys are in the hospital after a brick wall came crashing down on them in a vacant lot, seriously injuring the pair.

William Arango, 11, and his cousin Nathyiz Figueroa, 11, were playing basketball outside their Bushwick home Friday evening when their ball bounced into a construction site in a nearby vacant lot.

When they went to get the ball, a brick wall suddenly came down, trapping Arango.

"We eventually got the wall up, but the kid wasn't moving," said Arango's uncle, Tony Martinez, who helped pull Arango to safety. "We got him out but his eyes were bulged out and his face was all purple. He was bleeding from the mouth and we thought he was dead."

The boys were taken to Elmhust Hospital in serious but stable condition.

The city's Department of Buildings has issued a violation at the construction site.

By: Amanda Farinacci

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Suspect Killed in Harlem Pharmacy

Police shot and killed an armed suspect during an attempted robbery at a Harlem pharmacy, law enforcement sources said.

At least one other suspect was being sought following the incident late Thursday morning on 119th Street.   

Police are investigating the incident as part of a larger pattern of pharmacy robberies in Harlem.

No further information was immediately available.