Volume 80, Number 31 | January 5 — 12, 2011
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933
Shooting conviction upheld
An appeals court on Tues., Dec. 28, upheld the 2006 murder conviction of Rudy Fleming in the shooting death of Nicole duFresne, 28, an actress and writer, during a holdup at Rivington and Clinton Sts. in January 2005 while she was walking home with friends. Fleming, serving a sentence of life in prison without parole, appealed last year, claiming that he should have been declared mentally unfit for trial. The Appellate Division panel last week decided the trial was valid. “There was extensive evidence the defendant, even if psychiatrically ill…was deliberately feigning the type of symptoms that might suggest an inability to understand the proceedings and assist in his defense,” the decision said.
Soho House murder charge
Nicholas Brooks, 24, arrested Dec. 9 in connection with the death of Sylvie Cachay, 33, a swimwear designer found dead in a bathtub at Soho House, the exclusive hotel club in the Meatpacking District, was arraigned on Tues., Jan. 4, on a charge of second-degree murder. Brooks, of 60 Second Ave., checked into the hotel with the victim during the early hours of Dec. 9 and was arrested later that day after he returned to Soho House, at 29 Ninth Ave. at 13th St., where her half-clothed body had been found with strangle marks on her neck in the overflowing tub.
Autopsy reports at first were inconclusive pending a toxicology report. Cachay, a resident of W. 10th St. near Hudson St., reportedly was breaking up with Brooks. The suspect is the son of Joseph Brooks, an Oscar-winning songwriter facing charges of raping 11 aspiring actresses. Nicholas Brooks was being held without bail pending a court appearance later this week.
Bag thief gets bagged
Police arrested Richard Warren, 28, on Sun., Dec. 26, and charged him with grand larceny for stealing a bag with $1,300 in cash from a tipsy woman patron at Three Sheets Saloon, 134 W. Third St., eight days earlier. The victim told police she had put her bag on a ledge in the bar’s rear around 12:30 a.m. Sat., Dec. 18, and realized it was missing at 2 a.m. Warren was identified in a surveillance tape dragging the bag on the floor with his foot before picking it up and leaving the bar at 1 a.m., police said.
Police arrested an 18-year-old who gave his permanent address as Charlotte, N.C., on Wed., Dec. 29, for punching and injuring two men and one woman around 4 a.m. in front of a grocery store at 95 MacDougal St. near Bleecker St. Jesse Thomas was banging on the storefront window when the three victims told him the store was closed and asked him to stop banging, police said. Thomas then turned on the victims, broke one man’s glasses, bit the other man’s hand and injured the woman, punching her repeatedly in the chest, police said. He was charged with assault causing physical injury, criminal mischief and reckless destruction of property.
Bleecker bottle attack
Police arrested Javier A. Agurto, 25, of the Bronx around 2:30 a.m. Wed., Dec. 30, and charged him with first-degree assault with intent to cause physical injury. The suspect got into an argument with another patron at Wicked Willy’s bar, 149 Bleecker St., and followed him outside and down the street, where he attacked him with a bottle, police said.
Police evacuated a six-story building at 106 Norfolk St. near Delancey St. for a short time Wednesday morning Dec. 29 after someone on the fifth floor reported there was a hand grenade in an apartment. The grenade was deemed inert and residents were allowed back in the building after 45 minutes. There were no arrests in the incident.
Cabbie takes bags
A cab with two women passengers stopped in front of the Soho Grand Hotel, at 310 West Broadway, around 10:30 p.m. Wed., Dec. 29, and the hotel bellman started unloading their luggage, police said. Before all the bags were out of the cab, the driver sped away north on West Broadway. The lost luggage had shoes, clothes, two handbags, watches, a digital camera and perfume with a total estimated value of $5,320 police said.