Volume 73, Number 39 | January 28 - February 03, 2004

CITY/CRIME



Village club rape
A 19-year-old woman patron of Nocturne, a new nightclub at 144 Bleecker St., told police at the Sixth Precinct last week that three men broke into the bathroom of the club on the night of Jan. 6 and raped and sodomized her.

Dr. John Maggio, a member of Community Board 2 and head of the board’s Social Services Committee, said the victim came to his office on Jan. 20 and told him about the rape but said she was too ashamed to report it to police. He said he found she had bruises and abrasions consistent with her report. Maggio said he arranged for her counseling at St. Vincent’s Rape Counseling Center and urged her to report the incident to police.

She went to the Sixth Precinct on Mon. Jan. 26 and the case was referred to the Police Department’s Special Victims Bureau.

Maggio, a member also of the C.B.2 Public Safety Committee, said the victim told him that three well-dressed Caucasian men had burst into the bathroom at the rear of the club and raped her vaginally and anally. Maggio said the victim told him she believed the club bouncers knew what was going on but chose to do nothing about it.


Water-main break
The water main break at 12:30 p.m. Sun. Jan. 25 that poured up to 10 ft. of water into the basements of a dozen buildings and left many without heat, phones and utilities on Eighth Ave. between Jane and W. 12th Sts. took 41 hours to repair.

Service was restored at 5:30 a.m. Tues, Jan. 27, according to a spokesperson at the Department of Environmental Protection.

The 12-inch main, dating from the 1870s, burst because of its age and the stretch of subfreezing temperature, according to D.E.P. The rupture forced the closing of Eighth Ave. and the evacuation of several apartments. The Red Cross found temporary quarters for four residents and others moved to hotels or the apartments of friends.

Most affected were buildings on the east side of Eighth Ave. A couple in a basement apartment on W. Fourth St. managed to dress and flee without their coats before the water rose to the ceiling. Guests at Incentra Village House, at 32 Eighth Ave. at Jane St., fled as water filled the two basement apartments of the 12-unit inn and had to be relocated. La Cantina Cucina Italiana, a ground floor restaurant, had to cope with 7 ft. of water.

Partial traffic was restored on Eighth Ave. Monday night.


Flatiron shooting
A man, 22, was shot once in the head at 4 a.m. Fri. Jan. 23 at the corner of E. 22nd St. and Park Ave. and taken to Beth Israel Hospital where his condition was described as stable, police said. A group of men who had been arguing with the victim fled, police said.


Charged with murder
Ortillio Tapea, 21, of the Bronx, arrested on Jan. 19 in connection with a shootout in the Union Sq. subway station in which one man was killed, was charged on Jan. 23 with second-degree murder and criminal possession of a weapon, police said.

The victim, Silverio Rivera, of the Bronx, and his friend, Pedro Revilla, 17, got on a train at Eighth St. and met Tapea, an acquaintance of Rivera, police said. By the time the train reached Union Sq., Tapea and Rivera had drawn guns and Rivera went down with a bullet in his head.

At Union Sq. Revilla pulled his friend onto the platform and Tapea fled after throwing his gun behind a construction wall. Revilla was arrested at the scene and charged with weapon possession and Tapea was apprehended on Union Sq. W. at 15th St. Tapea, who had previously been deported as an illegal alien after an assault arrest, had returned illegally, according to law enforcement authorities.


9/11 fraud trial
A Criminal Court jury was empanelled on Tues. Jan. 27 in the grand larceny and fraud case against Beatrice Kaufman, 60, charged with illegally collecting more than $115,000 from insurance companies, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and two charities, Safe Horizons and the Red Cross, in connection with the World Trade Center attack on Sept. 11, 2001.

Kaufman, owner of Bon Temps, an employment agency for legal support staff, was indicted in November 2002 for taking money illegally from FEMA and insurance companies and was indicted in February 2003 for defrauding the two charities.


Missing actor-writer
Hope is dimming in the search for Spalding Gray, 62, the performer and writer, missing from his home on Wooster St. near Canal St. on Saturday night Jan. 10, according to friends of the family.

He was last reported seen in a diner in Orange County about a week after he was reported missing but there has been no reported sighting since then, said Sara Vass, a friend who is helping Gray’s wife, Kathy Russo, in the search.

Severely depressed since June 2001 when he suffered head injuries in an auto accident in Ireland, Gray made two suicide attempts in 2002 near his other home in the Hamptons.

The day before his disappearance, Gray had been reported seen on the Staten Island Ferry, a report that worried friends, his wife and their two children because his two suicide attempts were involved with water.

On the day he disappeared, Gray was wearing a gray jacket with a blue scarf, brown sweater, black corduroy trousers and brown shoes.


Manslaughter arrest
The death of James Capobianco, 46, whose body was found in his Independence Plaza apartment at 310 Greenwich St. on Sept. 10, was first classified as due to natural causes but reclassified as a homicide during an investigation of checks that were stolen from the apartment, police said.

Lamont Sanders, 19, of 230 Willis Ave., the Bronx, was arrested on Fri., Jan. 23, and charged with second-degree manslaughter, burglary and grand larceny in connection with the case. Police said Sanders told them the victim died of asphyxiation during sex. Sanders is also charged with stealing checks from the apartment and cashing them after Capobianco died.

By Albert Amateau


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