Volume 73, Number 52 | April 28 - May 4, 2004



Police Blotter

Attempted-murder charge
Barbara Zellman, 62, continues to be held at the Elmhurst Hospital Prison Ward in Queens in connection with her attack earlier this month on Miriam Sarzin, 67, at 61 Jane St., where both women live. According to police, on the morning of April 14, Zellman went to Sarzin’s 19th-floor apartment on the premise of planning a birthday party for Sandy Leaderman, Zellman’s partner. Zellman brought a hammer and Skyy vodka bottle with her in a plastic bag and after some conversation used them to savagely attack Sarzin, who was saved thanks to the efforts of a neighbor and two of the building staff. Zellman jumped out a window, landing two floors down on a balcony and breaking her collarbone. Zellman is charged with attempted murder in the second degree and assault in the first and second degrees. It was unclear if Zellman was being held in the psychiatric ward of the prison ward, though that was the last report from the Sixth Police Precinct. A Corrections Department spokesperson said she could not confirm whether Zellman, a psychotherapist and former public school teacher, was in the psychiatric wing. Sarzin, the treasurer of the Jane St. Association, was reported doing well recovering from multiple skull fractures from the attack, and was said to possibly be getting out of St. Vincent’s Hospital sometime this week.


Chelsea banks hit
A man walked into the Commerce Bank branch at 200 W. 26th St. near Seventh Ave. at 12:40 p.m. Fri., April 23, passed a note to a teller demanding money and fled with an undetermined amount of cash, police said. The suspect was described only as a white man in his 40s.

Another Commerce branch at 401 Fifth Ave. near 36th St. was the target of a robber who passed a note to a teller and fled with money about five hours later the same day, police said. That suspect was described more fully as a white man in his 40s, about 5 ft. 7 inches tall, of medium build, with blond hair, brown eyes, a light beard and wearing a black shirt, blue jeans and a blue baseball cap.


Lower East Side DOA
Kam Cheung, 50, was found unconscious at about 10 p.m. Mon., April 26, by family members in his apartment in the Baruch Houses at 50 Columbia St. and was declared dead by an Emergency Medical Service team who responded to the call, police said. The Medical Examiner’s office is investigating the cause of death.
Probe 1977 murder

New York City police have reopened the unsolved murder of a Housing police officer, Vito Chiaramonte, shot in Sept. 1977 at Delancey St. and F.D.R. Dr. in front of the Baruch Houses, according to a Daily News story.

Frederick Foley, 51, imprisoned in Germany for another homicide and extradited to Washington, D.C., to face a child-abuse charge, has indicated he can identify Chiaramonte’s killer as a man who is currently in prison on an unrelated conviction, the story says. Police, however, declined to comment on the report that they intend to talk to Foley about the matter.

At the time of the shooting, Chiaramonte was under investigation with four fellow Housing officers for robbing drug dealers.

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