Volume 78 / Number 4 - June 25 - July 1, 2008
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since

Police Blotter

Canal-Bowery fatal
A dump truck coming off the Manhattan Bridge slammed into a parked interstate bus and pushed it across the sidewalk and into the front of a bank at Canal St. and Bowery at 8 a.m. Mon., June 23, killing a woman on her way to work and injuring five others including the truck driver.

The notorious intersection was crowded with vehicles and pedestrians at the time of the accident.

Lai Ho, 57, of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, died apparently of a heart attack when she was hit by a sign that was knocked down in the crash as she was going to her job at United Commercial Bank, 77 Bowery.

The truck driver, Alejandro Fallo, 54, told police he lost control of the truck when the brakes failed. He passed a field alcohol test and was taken to Bellevue Hospital. The driver and three passengers of the Fung Wah bus, which was taking on Boston-bound passengers, were also hospitalized. None of the injuries was life threatening.

The bus clipped three vans, including a police van, and toppled a traffic light and a fire hydrant before it crashed into the front of the bank. The truck took down two metal signposts and a fire hydrant.

City Councilmember Alan Gerson issued a statement saying the accident at the Bowery and Canal St. intersection “once again points to the dangers of the unregulated increase in commercial truck traffic in the area. It is time for us to re-engage our efforts with renewed vigor and complete the Canal Area Traffic Study,” Gerson said. “We need a sensible truck and bus management plan that regulates the flow of commercial vehicles through this densely populated and highly trafficked area.”

East Village homicide
Police responded to a report at 3 a.m. Sun., June 22, that a man was stabbed in the courtyard of 465 E. 10th St. in the Jacob Riis Houses. But they found the victim, Roberto Leandry, 27, shot once in the lower back and grazed in the right arm. Leandry, a resident of 11-41 F.D.R. Dr. at E. 13th St. in the Riis complex, got involved in a dispute that ended in gunfire, police said. He was taken to Bellevue, where he was declared dead at 5:30 a.m.

L.E.S. homicide
Police responded to a call shortly after 2 a.m. Tues., June 24, that a man was shot in front of 205 Eldridge St. near Rivington St. They found the victim, Vincent Cruz, 17, of 40 Rivington St., with a single bullet in the head. He was taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was declared dead on arrival. Police were investigating the shooting but provided no further information.

S.U.V. lost control
The 60-year-old driver of a 1989 Pathfinder lost control of his car about 12:13 p.m. Fri., June 20, at the corner of Rutgers and Madison Sts., police said. The S.U.V. jumped the curb in front of 45 Rutgers St. in the LaGuardia Houses, destroyed a bench and injured six pedestrians, police said. Five of the injured were taken to Bellevue Hospital, two in critical condition, according to police. Two victims were taken to New York Downtown Hospital in stable condition. Police said there was no criminality involved in the accident. Lisa Pagon, 42, a mother of five children, had her legs crushed, and Felix Morales, 57, who has a fruit stand nearby, was also seriously injured, according to a Daily News article.

Karaoke shooting
The bouncer of Sing Sing Karaoke, 81 Avenue A at E. Fifth St., who was shot and seriously injured outside the bar shortly after 4 a.m. on May 10, woke from a medically induced coma nearly a month later, and picked his assailant, Jason Pagan, 21, from a photo array. Police arrested Pagan on Thurs., June 12, and charged him with attempted murder, first-degree assault and criminal possession of a weapon. He is in jail pending a July 30 court appearance, said a spokesperson for Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau.

Boiling water
Police arrested two sisters, Asuncion Castro, 19, and Rosemary Castro, 16, of 55 Rutgers St. in the LaGuardia Houses and charged them with assault for pouring boiling water on Asuncion’s former boyfriend when he visited the building at 1 p.m. Sat., June 14. According to the complaint, Asuncion had her younger sister wait in the staircase for the victim to arrive and pour the boiling water on him. The victim, 25, sustained burns on the back and arms. Asuncion was freed on $2,000 bail pending a June 27 court appearance. Castro was freed on her own recognizance pending an Aug. 12 court date, a district attorney spokesperson said.

Mugging arrests
Nester Gumbs, 24, and Carlin Alcide, 24, both of Brooklyn, were arrested and charged with being among four accomplices who choked and snatched jewelry from a woman, 19, around 4:30 a.m. Sat., June 7, at Delancey and Essex Sts. The victim spotted Alcide on a train on June 11 and told police, who arrested him. Gumbs was arrested on Mon., June 16. Bail for Gumbs was set at $10,000 pending a July 23 court appearance, and Alcide’s bail was set at $15,000 pending an Aug. 6 appearance, according to the district attorney’s office. The two other accomplices are being sought, police said.

Three arrested
Police arrested three men and charged them with knocking a man, 21, to the ground with a club at 13th St. and First Ave. at 2:30 a.m. Tues., June 17, and taking his wallet and cell phone, police said. James Daley, 22, of Queens, Jonah Rivera, 17, and Abraham Concepcion, 16, of Brooklyn, were charged with assault and robbery. Daley’s bail was set at $5,000 pending an Aug. 4 court date, and bail for Rivera and Concepcion was set at $2,000 each, pending a July 25 court date for Rivera and a Sept. 29 date for Concepcion, said a spokesperson for the district attorney.

Honor Village auxiliaries
Nicholas Pekearo and Eugene Marshalik, Sixth Precinct auxiliary police officers who were killed on March 14, 2007, by a gunman while on patrol on Sullivan St., were among 33 New York Police Department officers honored on June 16 at Medal Day at Police Plaza. Pekearo and Marshalik were also among the law enforcement officers slain in the line of duty who were honored on Tues., June 10, by the private, nonprofit Federal Law Enforcement Foundation.

Pekearo 28, a Village native and writer who planned to enter the Police Academy, and Marshalik, 19, a New York University student, were unarmed except for their nightsticks when they were killed by David Garvin, 42, who had just shot to death an employee at DeMarco’s restaurant on W. Houston and MacDougal Sts.

Bar burglary
The manager of a bar at 29 Seventh Ave. South was counting the night’s receipts in the basement at 4 a.m. Sat., June 7, when he spotted an intruder breaking into the cash registers upstairs, police said. The manager called police, who arrested Anthony Ketter, 30, of Brooklyn, and charged him with burglary.

Car break-ins
A man who returned to his car parked on the northeast corner of University Place at E. 10th St. at 11 p.m. Fri., June 6, noticed that the truck lock had been forced and a laptop computer had been stolen, police said.

A motorist returning to his car parked on Seventh Ave. South between W. 10th St. and Waverly Place at 6 p.m. Tues., June 3, discovered that that the front passenger-door lock had been forced and various items that had been left on the back seat were gone.

Albert Amateau

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