Volume 79, Number 18 | Oct 7 - 13, 2009
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Police Blotter

Suspect found dead

Sirmone McCaulla, 28, an Army veteran suspected of stabbing Christopher Gutierrez, 20, to death in front of the James A. Farley General Post Office in broad daylight on Sun., Sept. 27, apparently committed suicide in his former girlfriend’s Philadelphia apartment on Tues., Sept. 29.

McCaulla, whose body was found in a full bathtub with a plastic bag over his head and a television cable box on his chest, left a rambling suicide note on his MySpace page explaining his actions.

Gutierrez, who lived in the Jacob Riis Houses on Avenue D until a few months ago, was stabbed four times in the chest after an accidental bump with McCaulla turned violent in front of the landmark post office on Eighth Ave.

Gutierrez turned and assumed a fighting stance, but McCaulla was holding a knife at his side and stabbed him before walking away, according to reports. McCaulla walked back, picked up his cell phone that he had dropped, and continued on his way. A tourist captured McCaulla’s image in a photograph immediately following the incident, eventually leading police to identify the suspect.

Gutierrez had moved during the summer from his mother’s apartment in the Riis Houses to the Covenant House youth shelter on W. 41st St., but more recently found a place near Penn Station and had a job in a supermarket near Penn Station.

Meat Market mayhem

Five toughs used a metal traffic barrier to beat a man outside the nightclub One Little West 12, near Gansevoort St., in the Meatpacking District on Wed., Sept. 30, at 3:20 a.m., according to police. The New York Post reported that the 26-year-old victim had words with the men before he left the club to go home, then was confronted by them outside the place. The thuggish quintet allegedly punched and kicked him, then smashed him with a bottle, and finished it off by picking up a metal barrier and slamming him with it, breaking his elbow. Charged with gang assault were Jose Delaespada, 23; Omar Steele, 39; Kenneth Fortune, 21; Reggie Ruiz, 30; and Shamell Rijfrogel, 21.

Pizza pandemonium

A man arguing with an employee at Bravo Pizza, 64 Seventh Ave. at 14th St., at around 1:30 a.m. on Tues., Sept. 29, went behind the counter, picked up two knives and swung them at the worker, then threw the knives down on the countertop and walked out. The suspect, Miltos Kakourio, 47, returned a short time later, and the police arrived and charged him with criminal weapons possession.

Super raps senior

A Greenwich Village man, 63, was attacked with a crowbar by his super during an argument over the lights being turned on at his apartment building on Eighth St. near Fifth Ave. at 5:10 p.m. on Sept. 30, police sources said, according to the Post. The super, 30, allegedly swung the crowbar, striking the man’s hand, then fled.

Building bribery

Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau recently secured the indictment of 29 people, including six former Department of Buildings inspectors, for bribery, bribe receiving and enterprise corruption associated with the Lucchese crime family.

Lower Manhattan, Chelsea and Greenwich Village building sites for which bribes were paid included 110 Fulton St., 75 Wall St., 80-82 University Place, 414 W. 14th St., 11 W. 25th St., 565 W. 23rd St. and 1 E. 35th St., according to the indictment.

Three of the former D.O.B. inspectors — Frank Francomano, Carmine Francomano, Jr., and Thomas Masucci — were associates of the Lucchese crime family, the indictment says. They took bribes from builders and property owners, and also extorted money from a victim, the charges say.

The other three former D.O.B. inspectors — Earl Prentice, inspection manager in the Bronx; Angel Luis Aviles, supervising inspector in Manhattan; and Excel Plass, inspector in the department scaffolding safety unit — were charged with taking bribes from construction and real estate officials, the charges say.

Construction and real estate officials and companies charged with bribing the D.O.B. defendants include Richard Kelly, an associate of a few owners and contractors; Constel Mirauti, a contractor and owner of Abano Building Maintenance, Inc.; Steven Goworek, a contractor; Wayne Schumer, owner of Ucon Corp.; Leo Doyle, owner of Euro Excavation, Inc.; Michael Leon, a real estate company employee; and Nicolett Moskower, a registered D.O.B. expediter

The indictment charged that the Lucchese family defendants associated with D.O.B. and others were also involved in extortion, narcotics, gun trafficking and illegal gambling.

Albert Amateau

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