Tricia Bastian said she was strolling with her dog and a friend near the playground inside the park off Parade Place near Crooke Avenue last Thursday afternoon when she suddenly found herself standing in the middle of a giant pool of partially-dried blood and human tissue.
“One of the dogs suddenly started pulling at the leash and sniffing and looking at the ground,” she remembered with horror.
Nearby, a trash can was filled with bloody rags — all of it the remnants of a murder that took place the day before.
City rules require that the Parks Department keep parks in tip-top condition, but Deputy Inspector Ralph Monteforte said that, after his team completed its investigation, it failed to let Parks know it could come in and clean up.
“It’s not the Parks Department’s fault, it’s not Sanitation’s fault; it’s our fault,” Monteforte said at a precinct council meeting on Wednesday night. “That blood wasn’t cleaned in the park and it’s my fault.”
Monteforte said he was told of the bloody mess last Friday — a day after police finished its investigation. The Parks Department got the go-ahead to clean up later that day.
Since then, Parks has been by twice to clean up the area, using brushes, a power-washer, bleach and water.
The macabre mess was the result of the slaying of Julio Locarno, a 23-year-old Crown Heights man and murder suspect in the July 18 shooting of infamous rescue worker Jason Green — who along with fellow EMT Melissa Jackson allegedly stood by in December 2009 as an eight-month pregnant woman suffered an asthma attack and died outside a restaurant Downtown.
Police responding to reports of gunshots at the Parade Grounds at 10:40 pm on March 23 found Locarno lying in a pathway to the park with several gunshot wounds to his head and torso. He was pronounced dead on arrival at Kings County Hospital.
Cops are still investigating the murder.