Man busted for Gramercy package thefts

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police arrested a teen last week for multiple package thefts that took place earlier this summer in various buildings throughout Gramercy.

A Stuyvesant Town Public Safety Officer told police that he saw 19-year-old Luis Navarro Murillo via video surveillance entering 390 First Avenue in Peter Cooper Village around 4:30 a.m. on Tuesday, July 24, when he allegedly stole two packages from the building’s lobby.

After leaving that building, police said that about five minutes later, Navarro Murillo entered 350 First Avenue, also in Peter Cooper Village, and allegedly took one package from that lobby, then left the building.

Police later confirmed that Navarro Murillo also allegedly stole a package from the lobby of 39 Gramercy Park North on Tuesday, June 4 around 6:30 p.m.

Continue reading

Doorman arrested for masturbating in resident’s apartment

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police arrested a doorman last month who allegedly broke into a resident’s apartment and masturbated while inside earlier this year.

Police said that 21-year-old Ronald Yagual, a doorman at a building on West 23rd Street in the Flatiron District, went inside the victim’s apartment without permission on Thursday, May 23 around 3 a.m.

According to the District Attorney’s office, Yagual masturbated and then removed water from the victim’s refrigerator without permission to do so. Yagual was arrested inside the 13th precinct on Wednesday, July 17 at 9:30 a.m.

Yagual was charged with burglary as a sexually-motivated felony, petit larceny and criminal trespass. The court issued a temporary order of protection for the victim against Yagual but he was released on his own recognizance during a court appearance on Wednesday, July 17. The exact location of the building is being withheld to protect the victim.

An attorney for Yagual could not be reached for comment on the case by T&V’s press time.

Questions answered at housing forum

Assemblymember Deborah Glick, Councilmember Keith Powers, Assemblymember Harvey Epstein, Cooper Square Committee director of organizing and policy Brandon Kielbasa, State Senator Liz Krueger and Legal Aid housing attorney Ellen Davidson at the forum last week. (Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Assemblymember Harvey Epstein’s office sponsored a forum on Thursday at the NYU Dental School on East 24th Street regarding the rent laws that passed in June to answer questions that tenants have about rent regulation and affordable housing protections.

State Senators Brad Hoylman and Liz Krueger, as well as Assemblymember Deborah Glick, Councilmembers Keith Powers, Carlina Rivera and Ben Kallos, were also in attendance, and Legal Aid housing attorney Ellen Davidson was available to answer questions about the complex aspects of the new laws.

“The MCI section [of the rent laws] is just like MCIs: very complicated,” Davidson said of one of the parts of the law most difficult to understand. “[The Division of Housing and Community Renewal] will have to set a schedule of reasonable costs of what can be recovered but they have to do it quickly because they can’t do any work until it’s approved.”

One of the victories that state legislators claimed in the passage of the rent laws was an annual cap on MCIs, or major capital improvements, at 2%. The previous cap was 6%. The new law also caps the amount that a landlord can pass on to tenants after a vacant apartment is renovated at $89, while also eliminating the previous 20% vacancy bonus that landlords could add after tenants moved out.

Continue reading