Monday, November 30, 2015

500 Bags Of Heroin Found In Bronx Park

Parks Department workers found more than five hundred glassine bags or "decks," of heroin inside University Woods Park.   The drugs, along with phones and a box cutter were collected by law enforcement at the scene.  (Click on images to enlarge)


By Geoffrey Croft

Park workers cleaning up a Bronx park made a startling discovery, NYC Park Advocates has learned.

Employees found more than 500 glassine bags filled with heroin hidden under tree branches, leaves and covered over with rice according to law enforcement sources.  The rice is used to keep the heroin powder free of moisture.  Two cell phones, most likly "burner" phones, and a box cutter were also recovered.

The narcotics stash was discovered in University Woods Park in the University Heights neighborhood yesterday afternoon.       

The notorious three acre woodland park located between Cedar & Sedgwick Avenues has long been a dumping ground due to a lack of dedicated maintenance and staffing from the city.

Police from the 52 Pct. took possession of the alleged narcotics. 

The narcotics were found hidden under rice. 

Read More:

CBS - November 30, 2015   

New York Post - November 30, 2015  - By Daniel Prendergast 

News12 Bronx - November 30, 2015

Pix11 - December 1, 2015 -  By Allison Yang 

New York Daily News - December 1, 2015  - By Ryan Sit  

gothamist -  December  1, 2015 - By Emma Whitford  

Sunday, November 29, 2015

21-Year-Old Stabbed In Bronx Playground


A 21-year-old male was stabbed in the back on the handball courts of a Bronx playground NYC Park Advocates has learned.  

Two people were seen arguing when the assailant displayed a knife and stabbed the victim, according to police.  

EMS transported the victim to Jacobi Medical Center in stable condition.

The incident occurred yesterday in Colucci Playground at Mulford & Wilkinson Avenues at approximately 2:15pm within the confines of the 45th Pct.  

The suspect is known to the victim.

No arrests have made. 

- Geoffrey Croft

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Jogger, 26 Raped & Robbed In East River Park


Police are investigating the reported rape of a 26-year-old woman in a lower East Side park near the Williamsburg Bridge on Wednesday night.

The woman was jogging in East River Park when she was acosted by a man and dragged to the amphitheater in the park near Jackson Street, around 7:30 pm.  The woman told police she was raped, and robbed of her cell phone and credit cards, according to law enforcement sources.

The assailant fled on a bicycle.

On July 28th, a 41-year-old woman was raped in the park. 

- Geoffrey Croft

Parks Worker Assaults Park Officer Over Illegal Vendor Arrest

Royan Mitchell, 36 under arrest at Pier 15 at the South Street Seaport under the East River Drive.  Moments later a parks M & O worker got involved with the PEP officers.  Mitchell has been arrested at least 32 times.


By Geoffrey Croft

Parks Department maintenance workers attempted to prevent Parks Enforcement Patrol officers from arresting a violent career criminal NYC Park Advocates has learned.

The bizarre incident occurred yesterday at 1:45 pm. at Pier 15 at the South Street Seaport.
On November 11th, Royan Mitchell, 36, was observed by attempting to sell tickets to the Hornblower Cruises,  when park police approached him he fled.  

Yesterday, officers observed him again illegally soliciting at the same location.  While attempting to make an arrest, he resisted, at which time approximately six parks department M & O maintenance workers from Pier 15 surrounded the officers and tried to prevent them from arresting the vendor.  

Parks Department Maintaincence & Operation worker Sandra Knight, 53,  was suspended and issued three Criminal Court summons for her involvement in interfering in the arrest of career criminal Royan Mitchell at Pier 15 for illegal vending. 

"They were trying to fight us off," said an officer at the scene.  

"They were cursing at us, and trying to prevent him from being locked up. They were acting like animals." 

Officers said one park worker in particular, Sandra Knight, 53, became aggressive. They say she pushed the officers several times, yelling and screaming.

"She came out of nowhere fighting us,"  an officer said.

Officers say Knight was repeatedly told to back away from the vendor who officers eventually managed to put in handcuffs. Video shows her rushing towards the officers getting within inches, saying, "You got me, you got me." 

Officers can be heard telling her to back away.

Knight elbowed officer Ingrid Sanchez in the face, breaking her glasses when officers attempted to move her away from Mitchell who was still on the floor.  

Officers told her she would be placed under arrest. 

"Don't touch me, don't touch me," she yells over and over. 

Her colleagues are heard saying, "Don't do it Sandra." 

Officers can be heard saying repeatedly,  "Stop resisting Sandra, stop resisting."

Officers say Parks' Chief of Operations, Namshik Yoon, came down to the 1st Pct and intervened on the maintenance worker's behalf.  Instead of being charged with Resisting Arrest and Assault on a Peace Officer and face possible jail time,  the charges were downgraded.   

Sandra Knight was instead issued three Criminal Court summons - Disorderly Conduct, Failure to Comply with Directives of Officer, and Obstruction of Government Administration. 

The Parks Department suspended Knight.  

Royan Mitchell, 36  was charged with Resisting Arrest,  Disorderly Conduct,  Soliciting on Parks Property without a Parks' permit. 

He has been arrested at least 32 times according to law enforcement sources.  On June 18th  Mitchell arrested in a fast food restaurant in the 25 Pct. for repeatedly striking a person. Drugs were also found on his possession. 

The officer was treated at Presbyterian Hospital for minor injuries and released. 

Read More:

Parks staffer arrested after brawling with cops 
New York Post - November 27, 2015 - By Rich Calder and Tina Moore 

Parks Worker Allegedly Elbowed Parks Officer In The Face For 
Arresting Illegal Ticket Vendor
gothamist - November 27, 2015 -   By Emma Whitford

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Chinese Tree Victim Killed By Negligent Park's Dept. Contractor Laid To Rest

Jing Liu's widow breaks down outside the Wah Wing Sang Funeral home in Chinatown earlier today as she watched her husband's casket being led away. (Photos: Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates) Click on images to enlarge.


By Geoffrey Croft

The beloved Chinese food delivery man killed by a negligent Park's Dept. contractor was laid to rest today.

Jing Liu's name hand written in Mandarin Chinese in the window of the hearse. 

His devastated widow broke down as she watched her husband's casket being led away to the hearse outside of the funeral home on Mulberry Street in Chinatown.

The small service was attended by close families and friends. 

Last week Jing Liu, 48, was riding through Coffey Park in Brooklyn making a delivery when a large London Plane tree suddenly came crashing down.

The Park Department contractor, Carlstadt, N.J.- based RML Construction violated basic safety protocols while working in the Redhook Brooklyn park.      Standard safety protocols require maintaining a safe work zone with cones, caution tape and workers on the ground to flag approaching pedestrians, which were not adhered to.  

The company also violated the terms of its contact with the Parks Department by only having two of the four personnel required for tree removals as per the Tree Removal Item Specifications.

The"pruner" from RML Construction speaks with an FDNY Captain at the scene of incident on November 18th.  (Photo: Todd Maisel/NY Daily News)

It is well known that Parks Forestry division contracts tree trimming workers that are not certified arborists.  The two employees were not certified arborists. The Parks Department counters that International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) certification is not a requirement for this type of work. 

The Parks Department has suspended all contracts held by RML Construction. The company began working with the Parks Department on tree removals in  2014. 

The tree that killed Mr. was deemed removable by the Parks Department in at least July 2015.  

The City's DPR's Trees and Sidewalk Program budget is a paltry $6 million a year, up from $3 million last year.  

More than a dozen people have been struck by falling trees/limbs this year alone. 

The city has paid out $21.6 million in tree related death and injury cases 
in four recent settlements.

The body of  Jing Liu leaves the funeral home this afternoon in Chinatown. 

Read More:

A Walk In The Park  November 18, 2015 - By Geoffrey Croft

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Mullaly Park: Military Weapons Stolen From Massachusetts Armory Break-in Recovered



By Geoffrey Croft

A park goer told police he found a duffle bag full of guns inside a Bronx park by Yankee Stadium, NYC Park Advocates has learned. 

The man found the weapons inside Mullaly Park near Yankee Stadium around noon on Friday according to police.

Inside the bag were two Sig Sauer P228  9mm pistols and one M-4 automatic assault rifle.

The man walked across the Macombs Dam Bridge into Manhattan into NYPD housing PSA 6 and told police that he found the bag inside the park.

The guns appear to be military hardware connected to the Armory heist on Saturday at a Worcester Massachusetts army reserve center where more than a dozen military weapons were found missing after an overnight break-in. The armory's missing weapons included six M4 assault rifles, 10 pistols, and several long guns.

The FBI  took possestion of the weapons according to police and are trying to determine how the weapons ended up in the Bronx. 

A 34-year-old Bronx native and former Army reservist was arrested on Thursday on Long Island in connection with the weapons theft.  The suspect, James Walker Morales, was out on bail on a child rape charge at the time of his arrest. 

Mayor DeBlasio was a block away at Joyce Killmer park for a million tree event a half hour before the weapons discovery was made.

Read More:

Homeless hero turns in duffel bag filled with military weapons
New York Post - By Shawn Cohen and Larry Celona November 21, 2015

Friday, November 20, 2015

Taking No Questions Mayor DeBlasio Celebrates One Millionth Tree Planting

Mayor Bill de Blasio at this morning's press conferance celebrating the planting of the 1,017,634, tree in Joyce Kilmer Park in the Bronx,  as part of the MillionTreesNYC.  The Mayor was joined by, (from left) Deborah Marton, Bette Midler,  former Mayor Michael Bloomberg,  Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., Council Member Mark Levine,  City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Parks Commissinor Mitchell Silver,  and Congressman Jose Serrano.

The MillionTrees initiative has been plagued by a host of issues including poor management and oversight critics say.  The Mayor refused to answer a single question at the event. (Photos: Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates) Click on images to enlarge.


By Geoffrey Croft

Mayor Bill de Blasio celebrated the planting of the 1,017,634, tree this morning in Joyce Kilmer Park in the Bronx,  as part of the MillionTreesNYC.

The Mayor was joined by former Mayor Michael Bloomberg and New York Restoration Project’s Bette Midler who launched the Million Trees program in 2007.  

"We're not stopping," the Mayor pledged.  "There will be 150,000 trees planted over the next three years to continue this tradition."

The much-maligned program has been criticized over the years for a host of reasons:  Critics question the sense of planting new trees when the elected officials allocate only a fraction of the funds needed to care for the millions of already existing trees;  the improper installation/planting of the trees;  the lack of community-based planning and consultation regarding where the trees were planted; the lack of oversight; mortality rate; as well as the adoption rate of the trees which is a major component of the program.  

The program also displaced the Parks Department's public research library at the agency's 5th Avenue headquarters.

De blasio did not stick around to answer questions however.  The Mayor made a hasty exit out of the park after the last photo-op followed by pack of media trying in vein to ask questions.  

Like many of Mayor Bloomberg's "environmental" initiatives  Million Trees was viewed by many more for its PR value for than as a viable, sustainable program.  His PlaNYC program  was flush with capital spending but funding to maintain these new projects were largely absent.

Bette Midler got a hug, and later a kiss from former Mayor Michael Bloomberg who both launched the Million Trees program in 2007.  

Bloomberg reminded the crowd that the original event scheduled for October 21 was canceled  due to the tragic murder of police officer Randolph Holder the night before.

The Parks Department planted 750, 000 of the trees - 495,000 were planted in parkland and the remaining 155, 000 going to streets.  The remaining trees were planted by New York Restoration Project.

Flanked by aids, his security detail and the media, Mayor DeBlasio, makes a hasty exit out of the park without answering a single question at the event.

A member of the Mayor's security detail keeps a close watch over the one millionth planted tree.    (Photos: Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates) Click on images to enlarge.

One Million Trees: Planting Breakdown
Number of Trees Planted by Borough:
•   Bronx – 276,600
•   Brooklyn – 182,593
•   Manhattan – 80,016
•   Queens – 284,755
•   Staten Island – 173,134
•   (Borough unknown) – 2,902
Number of Trees Planted by Type:
•   Street trees: 155,000 (+ 2,020 since planting of the Millionth Tree)
•   NYC Park Trees: 595,000 (+ 15,614 since planting of the Millionth Tree)
•   Private and other open space: 250,000 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

1 Dead, Two Injured In Bronx Park Stabbing


By Geoffrey Croft

Police responded to a fight inside St. James Park at East 191st Street & Morris Avenue just after 7:00 pm last night.

Henry Leao, 21, of the Bronx, was pronounced dead at St. Barnabas Hospital after being stabbed multiple times in the torso.  

Two other victims, a 15-year-old and a 19-year-old male are in stable condition after also being stabbed multiple times in the torso. 

The incident occurred in the Fordham section of the Bronx within the confines of the 52nd Pct.

No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing. Police have speculated the dispute could have been gang related. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Brooklyn Tree Victim Dies

Police load the mangled bike into the truck of a patrol car on Monday night.  (Photos: Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates) Click on images to enlarge.


By Geoffrey Croft

The beloved Chinese food delivery man struck by a tree on Monday night has died as a result his injuries.

The Parks Department contractor ignored basic safety protocols while pruning the tree NYC Park Advocates has learned.

Jin Liu, 50, was riding through Coffey Park making a delivery when a large London Plane tree suddenly came crashing down.

Standard safety protocols dictate maintaining a safe work zone with cones, caution tape and a worker on the ground to flag approaching pedestrians.

A 360˚ drop zone perimeter needs to be established and protected which is generally 1 1/2 to 2 times the height of the tree. The contractor failed secure the drop zone.

Witnesses including Park workers said the private company,  RML Construction, the contractor hired by the Parks Department had not cordoned off the area when he rode through.

"A big mistake, a big mistake,"a Parks supervisor said at the scene confirming that the area was not taped off.

The job was staffed by only a two-person crew - a pruner and a flagman.

RML was doing tree work damaged by Hurricane Sandy, more than three years after the storm.

It is well known that Parks Forestry division contracts tree trimming workers that are NOT certified arborists.   It is not known at this time whether or not the workers were certified arborists.

An NYPD investigator takes photographs of the crushed bike. The deadly tree is on the right.

The victim was rushed to Methodist Hospital, where he was listed in critical condition since the incident. 

The incident happened in the park near the intersection of Pioneer Street and Richards Street. 

Mr. Liu worked at Ling Gee restaurant a block away from the incident.

"It is irresponsible for the agency to have allowed laborers untrained in the practices of arboriculture (or tree care) to fell an overly large street tree across the public right of way," said Dr. Carsten Glaeser, a Queens-based Consulting Arborist and independent urban tree expert.

"Maintaining a high standard of safety during tree care work well known to the most qualified arborists is key to delivering the level of care expected by the public, although not seen here.  That is called due-diligence.  The delivery of a lessor standard can only result in an increase likelihood of harm and injury to either the tree workers or the general public.  Clearly critical public safety measures were viewed as trivial, and now with an unfortunate human consequence."

The pruner (left) and the flagman (right) from RML Construction, a private company contracted by the Parks Department, at the deadly scene on Monday night speaking with NYPD investigator from Highway.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Delivery Worker Struck By Tree At Brooklyn Park In Critical Condtion


By Geoffrey Croft  

A delivery worker on a bike is in critical condition after being struck in the head by a tree a Park Department contractor had cut,  NYC Park Advocates has learned.

The incident occurred near Richards & Pioneer Streets in Brooklyn at Coffey Park this afternoon.

The safety protocol of the work being performed is being questioned.  

Thursday, November 12, 2015

"Police" Bikes Used By AlliedBarton Stir Up Concerns In Battery Park City


By Geoffrey Croft

Tensions have grown even higher over Battery Park City's secretive plan to replace PEP officers with private ambassadors.

Is AlliedBarton and the Battery Park City Park Authority deliberately attempting to mislead the public into believing they are getting police officers? 

That's a question some are asking after a highly visible piece of new equipment arrived in the middle of the night and into the park this afternoon.  

Seven black bicycles with the word "police" written across the frame in large letters were delivered overnight this morning to the Battery Park City Park (BPC) Park Enforcement Patrol command. Several BPC sources say are intended to used by AlliedBarton "Security Ambassadors" in Battery Park City.

Several personnel were seen training on the bikes along the esplanade this afternoon weaving in and out of bright orange safety cones with instructors. 

Concerns are being raised regarding the use of the word POLICE on the bikes as it is illegal to impersonate a police officer or give that impression. 

"Why do they have bikes that say police on them, " asked Local 983 President Joe Puleo who represents the PEP officers. 

"It's a crime to identify yourself as a police officer or a peace officer when you are not."

S 190.26 Criminal impersonation in the first degree.     A  person is guilty of criminal impersonation in the first degree when   he:     1. Pretends to be a  police  officer  or  a  federal  law  enforcement   officer  as enumerated in section 2.15 of the criminal procedure law, or   wears or  displays  without  authority,  any  uniform,  badge  or  other   insignia  or  facsimile thereof, by which such police officer or federal   law enforcement officer is lawfully distinguished or expresses by his or her words or actions that he or she  is  acting  with  the  approval  or   authority   of  any  police  department  or  acting  as  a  federal  law   enforcement officer with the approval of any agency that employs federal   law enforcement officers as enumerated in section 2.15 of  the  criminal   procedure law; and     2.  So  acts with intent to induce another to submit to such pretended  official authority or otherwise to act in reliance  upon  said  pretense and  in  the  course  of  such  pretense commits or attempts to commit a  felony;   

Seven bicycles with the word "police" written across the frame in large letters were delivered overnight to the Battery Park City Park (BPC) Park Enforcement Patrol command. 

"No bicycles used by AlliedBarton in Battery Park City will say “police,” The Battery Park City Park Authority said in a statement.  

"The bicycles that were present in the Regatta are a model made by Fuji called “Police Patrol.” Any markings are purely branding by Fuji and will be removed prior to use."

The issue comes ten days after an AlliedBarton representative denied that one of their security guards was involved in a stabbing incident while on duty at the World trade Center on September 14th. 

John McArdle, AlliedBarton's regional operations manager was asked about the incident at the November 2nd Community Board 2 meeting. He said an employee of the company was not involved.  

Saul Puente,  an AlliedBarton Security Services employee was arrested and charged with felony assault according to police after someone threw french fries at him. He allegedly slashed the victim in the face and stabbed him in the chest before fleeing down Fulton Street.

Personnel were seen training on the bikes along the esplanade this afternoon with instructors. PEP officers have 24-hour Peace Officer status with arrest powers while AlliedBarton "security ambassadors" have no arrest powers.

Battery Park City Authority's controversial plan to replace most the 45 PEP officers with AlliedBarton "security ambassadors" who have no arrest powers has not sat well with residents.   The public found out about the move after the Authority board voted on the plan at its October 27th meeting which was reported by a local paper.  

At the  Novemver 2nd Community Board 1 meeting a BPCA representaive put the deal with  AlliedBarton at  $1.8 million.

After the meeting a BPCA spokesperson said the board approved a contract not to exceed $ 2.1 million to the private security firm.  The deal would replace the current $ 2.5 million dollar PEP contract. 

A flyer circulated after the news broke slamming the plan.

"Shame on the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) for ONCE AGAIN making a behind Close Door Deal without asking the residents and the community,"  the flyer read in part.  

"Taxation Without Representation

We do not need '"Customer Service Agents"' who are unable to enforce the law and will be unable to protect not only the residents of Battery Park City but the millions of people who visit our parks annually," the flyer said. 

Teen Stabbed In Bronx Park In Critical Condition


By Geoffrey Croft

A 17-year-old was stabbed in the neck in Williamsbridge Oval Park NYC Park Advocates has learned.

The victim is in critical but stable condition according to police.

Witnesses told authorities that a group of between 6 - 8 people were talking when an argument broke out. They heard yelling and screaming and saw the victim lying on the ground his holding the right side of his neck.  

The group ran east out of the park.

The incident occurred yesterday at 2:35 pm. near the Recreation Center within the confines of the 52nd Pct.    

Two young kids came into the Recreation Center and alertered a Park Enforcement Patrol Officer.

Park patrons and even a motorist came to the aid of the victim.

"People were trying to help stop the bleeding," said a law enforcement source at the scene.

"One woman jumped out of her car and brought paper towels.   People from the basketball court came over to help."  

Police recovered a small folding knife with blood on it. They also found a large kitchen knife in a nearby sewer drain.

No arrests have been made.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Design Flaw Eyed In Juniper Valley Park Bocce Court Flooding

“The shade structures that were installed are meant to offer protection from the sun,  not the rain. In fact,  it was designed to let the rain flow through it.” - Parks Department

Bocce Player Anthony Sozio standing in the puddles of the newly renovated courts.  "When it rains all the water comes in and makes holes all over the place," Sozio said. "After the rain we come over here and work, we do all the maintenance. The Parks Department doesn’t do anything for us — we do everything ourselves.”  Prior to the redesign, they were able to sweep water of the courts through drains, Sozio said. 


Add shoddy bocce court work to the growing list of botched Parks Department capital projects in Juniper Valley Park irate critics say. 

Barely a year old after undergoing an $850, 000 renovation to repair the deteriorating courts Bocce players are furious at city over the conditions caused by the design flaw.  They say the design of the canopy-like structure over the courts, which includes slanted glass panels, allows for rain to fall unevenly on the dirt courts, creating an uneven playing surface.  Players say the courts are in worse shape now than before the renovation. 

The Parks Department's Capital Division installed plexiglas shade structures made from recycled materials they say to let the rain flow through it, which players say has caused the problems.   

In March the contractor blamed the problem on the Parks Department Capitol Division, “the designer didn’t design it properly. We picked up the drawings from the Parks Department.”

A Parks' spokesperson tried to blame the players and the Community Board for the poor design. 

“The new bocce courts were designed in collaboration with local bocce players and the final plans were approved by both these players and Queens Community Board 5.”

 The Parks Department said it will now install covers.

- Geoffrey Croft

Rendering courtesy of the Parks Department/Photos Courtesy of Dominick Totino Photography
A rendering of the bocce courts project at Juniper Valley Park.

Bocce ball players in Queens say a city redesign ruined their courts at a park in Middle Village, according to WCBS news in a segment called, Whose Bright Idea Was This. 

The Parks Department spent $850,000 to renovate Juniper Valley Park — but the canopies above the courts, which were designed to block out the sun, funnel rainwater onto the courts, creating holes in the playing field and flooding which takes days to dry out. 

Paul Maucelli and Anthony Sozio, both retired, play bocce almost every day at the location off 79th Street and Juniper Boulevard.  “We don’t need this, the way they did it,” Maucelli told CBS2’s Meg Baker. “We can’t use it, waste of money. They gotta do something.”  Bocce, an Italian ball sport, is typically played on a flat court. Players take turns rolling colored bocce balls towards a small, white ball on the other side of the playing field. Players receive points based on whoever can get their set of balls closer to the target.

Prior to the redesign, they were able to sweep water of the courts through drains, Sozio said.  

“After the rain we come over here and work,” Sozio said. 

“All this maintenance, Parks Dept. doesn’t do anything for us — we do everything ourselves.”  

Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley is pushing the city to fix the situation. 

“We want to make sure that we continue to keep courts in high quality standards and that has to do with maintenance,” Crowley said. 

 The NYC Parks Department said it will install covers.  “An initial attempt to install Plexiglass did not yield results that fit our standards,” the Parks Dept. said in a statement.

 “We are exploring alternative materials and we how to have the project complete by early next year.”  

A tournament this summer brought more than 500 players to the Middle Village courts.

Read/View More:

CBS - November 9, 2015 - By Meg Baker 

Queens Chronicle -  March 26,  2015 - By Mark Lord   

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Four Slashed In Queens Park Mugging - Two Arrested


By Geoffrey Croft

Four males were slashed with razors inside Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, NYC Park Advocates has learned.  

Four men were sitting on a bench inside the park at 11 p.m. on November 4th, when a group of male Hispanics on bikes approached and began cursing. 

Two assailants got off the bikes and pulled razors.  One slashed a 41-year-old victim in his hand who was on a cell phone causing him to drop the phone.

The attackers picked it up and when the victim's friends protested, the two attackers slashed his three friends as well.

The victims were all male 41 (phone stolen)  28, 28, and 26.

The incident ocured in the park near northeast corner of 49th Avenue and 111th Street  within the convines of the 110 Pct.

Police apprehended the suspects on bikes nearby a few hours later at 2:30 a.m. on November 5th.

A passerby who witnessed the crime ID'd the attackers.

Police charged Dario Rodriguez, 27,  with robbery, assault and marijuana possession.       
He was arraigned on November 5th and is being held on $ 30,000 bail. An order of protection was issued. He did not make bail.  He is due back in court November 10th.

Jonathan Pena,  23,  was charged with robbery and assault.   He was arraigned on November 5th and ordered held on 15,000 bail. An order of protection was also issued. He did not make bail. He is due back in court on November 10th.

Thieves Wearing Masks Rob Couple In Queens Park


A walk in the park turned into a nightmare for an Asian husband and wife this week when they were mugged in Kissena Park. 

The couple, male, 34, and female, 31 were in the park near 45 Avenue & Colden St. at 8:50pm when they were approached from behind by two assailants black wearing masks. 

One punched the female in the back of the head causing her to fall on the ground.  While she was on the floor one held the husband and twisted his arm behind his back and removed 
$ 50 from the victom's pants pockets.

The perps fled southbound on Colden St. according to police. 

The incident occurred on Tuesday night, November 3rd within the confines of the 109th Pct.   

Both suspects were described as 6'0 tall, 180 pounds wearing black. 

Sgt. Brendan Ryan from DCPI said the investigation is on going and encouraged the public to call the NYPD Tip Hotline (800) 577 - TIPS  if they had any information involving the case.

- Geoffrey Croft

Monday, November 2, 2015

Second Major Outdoor Music Festival Vying For Flushing Meadows Corona Park This Summer


By Geoffrey Croft

News of a second promoter negotiating with the city  to stage a large music festival in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park this summer have emerged. 

Madison Square Garden is seeking permission from the city to put on a major outdoor music festival in Queens on Friday, June 24, through Sunday, June 26, 2016 according to the NY Post.

AEG, the organizers of  the massive Coachella music fesival on the west coast is also petitioning the city to stage a large-scale music event in the park around the same time.

The festival — tentatively called Panorama — is being eyed to be put on two weeks after Governors Ball in June. 

New York Post - November 1, 2015 -  By Claire Atkinson

New York Daily News - September 30, 2015 -BY Lisa L. Colangelo, Denis Slattery