Volume 73, Number 44 | March 3 - 9, 2004

Police Blotter

Arrest in subway fire
Police arrested a deranged man as he emerged shirtless and covered with soot from a Village subway station Sunday evening and charged him with causing the explosion and fire that filled the tunnel with smoke and forced the evacuation of more than 1,000 passengers from seven trains stuck near the W. Fourth St. I.N.D. station.

Bonergy Quelal, 47, of Hunts Pt. Ave. in the Bronx, arrested last year in Sullivan County for stealing mail, was charged with felonious criminal endangerment, mischief, tampering and trespass in the Feb. 29 incident, which began shortly after 6 p.m. He was interrogated by the city Task Force on Terrorism, police said.

A D train motorman told the Daily News that he saw the suspect throw a fire extinguisher, a ladder and other equipment apparently taken from a tunnel storage area onto the northbound B, D and F track and then hurl metal rods at the third rail causing a series of explosions and a smoky fire that halted trains on both the Sixth Ave. and Eighth Ave. tracks.

Passengers, some of whom were trapped in smoky cars for more than two hours, were evacuated along the tracks to the Broadway-Lafayette St. station and to emergency exits at Spring, Downing and Bleecker Sts. Three passengers were taken to St. Vincent’s Hospital for smoke inhalation, according to officials.

The fire was brought under control after 9 p.m. and service on the Eighth Ave. A, C and E trains was restored by 11 p.m. Service on the Sixth Ave. tracks was not restored until the Monday morning rush.

Shot on E. 13th St.
A dispute between two teenagers over a pair of sneakers in front of the Genesis Residence next to the New York University Palladium residence hall on E. 13th St. on Sunday afternoon, Feb. 29, ended in gunfire that injured one youth, police said.

The victim, 18, made his own way to Beth Israel Hospital after one bullet grazed his lip and another hit his right arm at 3:15 p.m. Police arrested the suspect, Frederick Freeman, 15, five hours later at his home in the Genesis residence, 113 E. 13th St.

Police recovered a 9-mm handgun and shell casings on E. 15th St. near Irving Pl. The nonprofit Robert Kennedy Genesis residence was built nine years ago for low-income and formerly homeless families.

Cabbie bash bust
Police arrested a transvestite charged with the Feb. 21 assault of a cab driver on Christopher St. and Seventh Ave. Carlos Sanchez, 32, of 25 W. 24th St., was arrested Sun. Feb. 29 and charged with hitting the victim, who was standing in front of his cab, with a spike-heel shoe. The victim was taken to St. Vincent’s Hospital where he was in serious condition with head injuries.

Seward Park High assault
A student at Seward Park High School, 350 Grand St., was arrested Mon. March 1 and charged with assaulting a school safety officer, police said. The student, Korsien Foster, 16, of E. 126th St., was breaking glass. He butted the safety officer with his head when the officer tried to stop him, police said. The suspect was charged with assault and possession of a weapon, a box cutter, police said.

Wounded in robbery try
Two men who hailed a cab at E. 142nd St. and Third Ave. in the Bronx at 4:20 a.m. Fri. Feb 27, got out at their destination at E. Houston and Baruch Pl., stuck a gun in the driver’s face and demanded money, police said. The driver, Henry Bonsu, 36, of Brooklyn, refused and the robber fired three shots, one of which hit Bonsu in the wrist, police said. The robbers ran off without taking anything and Bonsu fled a few blocks before calling police on his cell phone. He was taken to Bellevue in stable condition.

Stabbed boyfriend
A woman stabbed her boyfriend in the left arm on Saturday morning Feb. 27 during an argument in front of a homeless shelter at 128 Baruch Pl. south of E. Houston St., police said. The friend refused medical attention and declined to press charges but police disarmed the woman and charged her with assault.

East Village shooting
An unknown assailant shot a 16-year-old youth in the chest at 8:24 p.m. Sun. Feb. 29 at the corner of E. Third St. and Avenue D, police said. The suspect fled and the victim was taken to Bellevue Hospital in stable condition. There was no arrest and police are investigating the incident.

Bank robber
A man walked into the HSBC branch at 10 Union Sq. E. at 9:45 a.m. Mon. March 1 and passed a note to a teller demanding money. The thief, described as a black man, about 35, wearing a blue jacket and a black hat, got away with an undetermined amount of cash, police said.

DOA Orchard St.
Mary Goings, 27, was found dead in her apartment at 139 Orchard St. by her roommate at 12:30 a.m. Mon. March 1, police said. The Medical Examiner’s Office is investigating the cause of death.

Chelsea knifing
An argument at the corner of W. 25th St. and Ninth Ave. on Wednesday morning Feb. 25 ended when a suspect stabbed his adversary in the back and fled, police said. The victim, 40, was taken to St. Vincent’s Hospital in stable condition.

Albert Amateau


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