Police Watch: Transgender woman killed, Man busted for bank robbery

TRANSGENDER WOMAN KILLED ON SEVENTH AVENUE
Police said that 59-year-old transgender woman Brenda Bostick was found unconscious in front of 343 Seventh Avenue on April 25 at 10:30 p.m. Police reported that Bostick was transported to Bellevue Hospital and died from her injuries last Thursday. Bostick was a resident of the BRC Shelter on West 25th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues and had suffered head trauma.
Her death has been ruled a homicide and the investigation is ongoing.

MAN ARRESTED FOR CHASE BANK ROBBERY
Police arrested 52-year-old Charles Queen for robbery last Friday at 10:19 a.m. inside the Chase Bank at 501 Second Avenue at East 28th Street. According to the district attorney’s office, Queen passed a teller in the bank that read, “Don’t make a sound at all. This is a bank robbery. Need money now!!! Nobody will get hurt. Don’t make a sound.” The teller secretly alerted police and Queen was arrested.

WOMAN ARRESTED AFTER CAR FLIPPED ONTO SIDE
Police arrested 24-year-old Corey Kaminski for allegedly drunk driving after her car flipped on its side at the corner of East 24th Street and Lexington Avenue last Saturday at 4:32 a.m. Police said they were responding to a call about an accident when they found a car on its side with the driver still in the vehicle. Police said that Kaminski, who had been driving the car, had watery eyes, a flushed face and an odor of alcohol on her breath, but she told police that she only had a beer. Kaminski was taken to Bellevue Hospital to be treated for her injuries.

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In new book, Bellevue doctor says physicians need to listen to patients

Feb23 Danielle Ofri

Bellevue Doctor Danielle Ofri (photo courtesy of author)

 

By Sabina Mollot

Dr. Danielle Ofri, PhD, MD, a Kips Bay resident and Bellevue Hospital doctor who’s authored four nonfiction books, has just released her fifth, on the need for better communication between patient and doctor.

The book was inspired by a number of her own patients’ inability to tell someone else what their concerns are coupled with doctors’ habits of not listening as carefully as they should.

She gave one example of how after a while she began tuning out a patient “who was very demanding of my time,” Ofri said. He’d annoy her by leaving multiple, angry messages on her answering machine demanding to see her right away. His habit of panicking and the constant messages wore on Ofri, and while she knew he had a bad heart, she was surprised when one day he actually collapsed in her office.

“He was nervous about his heart and the terror of dying animated him,” she said. “I’m hearing obnoxious and angry demands and was not recognizing his fear of death,” Ofri admitted.

This example is mentioned in the book, What Patients Say; What Doctors Hear ($25, $24 as an e-book).

Ofri, who’s worked at Bellevue for 20 years, said often patients are too embarrassed to discuss their deeper concerns with their doctor like the real reasons they’re not taking their prescribed medication. Affordability is often, though not always a factor.

“Patients are very shy about saying it costs too much or they’re splitting it in half or there’s an eating disorder or domestic violence.”

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Teen arrested in connection with attempted sexual assault of woman in Stuy Town

June23 sign

Stuyvesant Town (photo by Sabina Mollot)

UPDATE: Police have filed charges of attempted rape, assault, strangulation, sex abuse, burglary against the suspect, identified as Aaron Kish of Piscataway, New Jersey. Police didn’t have information on if the victim was injured, although she had been taken to the hospital for treatment and observation and police said there was a “physical confrontation.” Police also said Kish has been arrested before though it wasn’t clear how many times or what the charges were. In the alleged assault, he suffered some facial injuries when the victim fought back.

By Sabina Mollot

Police have arrested a 17-year-old who’s suspected of trying to sexually assault a woman inside the vestibule of her building in Stuyvesant Town.

Police said that at around 4:45 a.m. the victim, a 22-year-old woman, was walking into her building when the suspect entered the vestibule behind her. He then started talking to her before pulling off her clothes and trying to sexually assault her. At that point, a resident of the building came into the vestibule, and the attacker fled.

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Homeless man arrested for attempted rape in Union Square

Union Square Park (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Union Square Park (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

A homeless man was arrested for the attempted rape of a 23-year-old woman on a sidewalk just north of Union Square Park early Sunday morning.

The victim, who told police that she had been drinking earlier in the evening with a friend, said that she sat down at the northwest corner of Park Avenue South and East 17th Street and fell asleep on the sidewalk. When she woke up around 1:30 a.m., 39-year-old Nelis Calix was allegedly standing over her with his pants down.

There was a blanket covering her and she didn’t know where it came from, but her pants were also partially pulled down, she reported to police. A witness said that he heard her yelling, “no” and “help” multiple times while Calix reportedly lifted the blanket that was covering her. According to the District Attorney’s office, Calix went between the victim’s legs and attempted to rape her before bystanders intervened.

Other nearby witnesses called 911 to report the crime and Calix attempted to flee but he was arrested shortly after 1:45 a.m.

The victim was transported to Bellevue Hospital, where she was treated and released.

Police sources said that Calix has 18 prior arrests, including public lewdness, and he was arrested for sexual abuse in 2002 in the Bronx. Police said that Calix also frequently goes by different names. He is being held on Rikers Island for $50,000 bail and has a court appearance this Friday.

Calix’s lawyer did not respond to a request for comment.

Police Watch: Men survive being pushed into subway tracks, College dorms vandalized with swastikas

TWO MEN PUSHED ONTO SUBWAY TRACKS IN SEPARATE INCIDENTS
Two men have survived being shoved onto subway tracks in separate incidents, within one week of each other. In both cases, the victims suffered only minor injuries.
In regards to one incident, police have arrested 25-year-old New Jersey resident Aaron Clary for allegedly pushing a 54-year-old man into the tracks at the West 18th Street/Seventh Avenue subway station. Police said on Sunday around 7:30 a.m., Clary pushed the man off the uptown platform while a 2 train was pulling into the station. Miraculously, when cops arrived, they found the victim underneath the subway car with a cut to his foot and a bruise on his head. The victim was taken to Bellevue Hospital and police said that he was conscious and alert. Clary was arrested when he turned himself in and was charged with assault and attempted manslaughter
A 41-year-old man also suffered minor injuries after his girlfriend allegedly pushed him onto the tracks of the L train at the Union Square station after an argument last Monday at 6 a.m. The New York Daily News reported that the man initially told police that he’d fallen onto the tracks when the train pulled in the station. The train rolled directly over him, trapping him underneath it, but he only got a cut on his toe and a minor head injury. He was treated for his injuries at Bellevue Hospital and was released. No arrests have been made.

NEW SCHOOL DORMS VANDALIZED WITH SWASTIKAS AFTER ELECTION
A group of Jewish students at the New School found swastikas drawn on their dorm doors last Saturday, the Daily News reported. New School President David Van Zandt confirmed in an official statement that four dormitory doors were defaced and the administration was taking action to ensure students’ safety. The students affected said they were shocked that the anti-Semitic symbol showed up in such a “progressive city.”

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Elderly man fatally struck by ambulance at 14th St. and Second Ave.

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A man was hit by this ambulance as it turned left onto East 14th Street. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

An 81-year-old man died after being hit by an ambulance on Monday afternoon as he crossed the street at the 14th Street and Second Avenue intersection.

According to police, the man, who was later identified as Gen Zhan, a resident of East 29th Street, was crossing as the ambulance was on Second Avenue, making a left turn onto 14th.

Zhan suffered severe body trauma after being hit and was taken to Bellevue, but doctors were unable to save him.

Later at the scene the ambulance’s emergency lights were still flashing although police didn’t have information on whether there had been a patient inside at the time of the accident.

One emergency responder said Zhan had actually gone against the light and hit the side of the ambulance, a blind spot, after it turned. He then fell back and hit his head. A police spokesperson said she didn’t have any information on whether he was going against the light. However, she said he had tried to run across the street, but didn’t make it and was hit while on the crosswalk.

Around two dozen cops and FDNY emergency officials responded to the scene and part of the intersection was closed to traffic for the remainder of the afternoon.

A rep for police said the matter was still under investigation, but no criminality was suspected. The ambulance driver, 22, remained at the scene. The case is being handled by the NYPD’s Collision Investigation Squad.

Zhan was a resident of Renwick Gardens, an apartment complex for seniors in Kips Bay.

Medicaid office at Bellevue closed

By Sabina Mollot

A Town & Village reader alerted us last week to some outdated information online with regards to Medicaid services that ended up causing her to go to the wrong address for help on one of the summer’s hottest days.

The reader, a Stuy Town resident, said she’d read online that the most nearby Medicaid office was at 462 First Avenue inside Bellevue Hospital. But when she got there, she was informed that the location had been closed for two years.

“Not two days, not two weeks, two years,” she said. She was then redirected to the Medicaid office at 115 Chrystie Street on the border of Chinatown and the Lower East Side.

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Two drivers arrested for accidents outside Stuy Town

Feb25 Car accident

The incidents, one in which a car was flipped over, follow another recent arrest for an accident outside of Stuyvesant Town (pictured). (Photo by Steve Kaufman)

 

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police arrested two people this week outside Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village for car crashes caused by alleged drunk drivers, one of which resulted in a car getting flipped over.

Police were responding to the corner of First Avenue and East 20th Street because of a vehicle collision on Friday, February 26 at 4:14 a.m. and Linda Roth, 32, was allegedly behind the wheel of a car with the engine running. She allegedly had bloodshot, watery eyes and a strong odor of alcohol on her breath. Police said that she was unsteady on her feet and had slurred speech.

Upon further investigation, police found that Roth was driving on the First Avenue service road and allegedly jumped the sidewalk, driving into a traffic sign pole and crashing into a concrete flower box. Police said that she submitted to a Breathalyzer at the scene and blew .158. The legal limit for blood alcohol content is .08. Roth was removed to Bellevue Hospital for treatment and for a blood test to determine her blood alcohol level.

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Man arrested after crashing taxi, injuring other driver on 1st Ave.

Ilir Kuka was arrested after allegedly driving off in the cab he’d been riding in, going the wrong direction and hitting a minivan. (Pictured) Emergency responders at the scene (Photo by Steve Kaufman)

Ilir Kuka was arrested after allegedly driving off in the cab he’d been riding in, going the wrong direction and hitting a minivan. (Pictured) Emergency responders at the scene (Photo by Steve Kaufman)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police arrested 25-year-old Ilir Kuka for crashing a taxi into a minivan in front of Stuyvesant Town, injuring the mini-van’s driver. Kuka was not a cabbie, but allegedly drove off in the cab he’d been riding in after getting into an argument with the driver, only to go in the wrong direction, causing the accident.

The driver said he’d picked Kuka up in his taxi last Tuesday on Third Avenue between East 10th and 11th Streets around 10:30 p.m. Not long after the driver picked him up, they began to argue, and both men got out of the car. When the driver got out, he left the keys in the ignition and Kuka then allegedly got into the cab and drove away.

The driver said that Kuka drove north on Third Avenue towards East 14th Street, allegedly hitting a woman’s car on the passenger’s side just south of East 14th, causing a large dent. The woman said that he continued driving and she saw him turn right from Third Avenue onto East 15th Street, traveling in the wrong direction on the road.

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Police Watch: Bike ‘thieves’ busted, Assault after car accident

BIKE ‘THIEVES’ BUSTED ON THIRD AVENUE
Police arrested 35-year-old Manuel Cruz and 39-year-old Carlos Rosario for petit larceny and possession of stolen property at the corner of Union Square East and East 15th Street last Friday at 6:16 p.m. Police said that Cruz and Rosario were seen attempting to sell a bicycle to a worker while in front of 206 Third Avenue. When they were unsuccessful, they allegedly started to case bicycles nearby. Police said that Cruz was then seen removing a bicycle from a scaffolding while Rosario acted as a lookout. Police said that they fled on stolen bikes and were ultimately stopped at East 15th Street and Union Square East. Cruz was also charged with possession of burglar’s tools.

MAN ARRESTED FOR ASSAULT AFTER CAR ACCIDENT
Police arrested 32-year-old Leyland Papa for assault and possession of marijuana at the corner of West 28th Street and Broadway last Monday at 2:21 a.m. Police said that Papa hit another car while driving at the intersection and when the other driver got out of his car to confront Papa about it, he allegedly punched the driver in the face multiple times. Police said that the victim suffered multiple physical injuries, including a cut under his right eye, a contusion on his forehead, bleeding from his mouth and cuts on his hand. Papa was also in possession of a plastic bag with alleged marijuana that was in his front left pocket.

MAN BUSTED FOR THEFT OF SOCIAL WORKER’S WALLET
Police arrested 22-year-old Charlie Emener for grand larceny inside 109 East 16th Street last Monday at 5:49 p.m. The victim said that she is a social worker who was working with Emener and they were together in her office when she stepped out to speak with her supervisor. When she returned, she said that she saw Emener go into her purse and take her wallet, which contained her ID and debit card.

MAN ARRESTED FOR ‘K2’ IN UNION SQUARE PARK
Police arrested 23-year-old Keith Owens for an unclassified violation of New York State laws at the corner of Union Square East and East 14th Street last Tuesday at 2:15 p.m. Police said that Owens was smoking a lit K2 cigarette in public view while inside Union Square Park, and was allegedly in possession of additional synthetic marijuana.

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Man arrested for fatal hit-and-run on FDR Drive

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police have arrested a man for allegedly leaving the scene after a hit-and-run on the FDR Drive that killed Anthony Pham, a 29-year-old San Francisco resident.

Mirsad Dzaferovic, 34, was collared on Saturday morning for the accident that occurred a day earlier, in the early morning, on the northbound side of the FDR near East 28th Street. The FDNY received a call around 12:35 a.m. and police responded to the scene at about 1:05 a.m.

When they got there, officers discovered Pham lying in the roadway with head trauma. Dzaferovic had allegedly left the scene without waiting for police and allegedly continued to drive north on the FDR. Pham was taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police tracked down Dzaferovic through vehicle parts, including a mirror and door handle with grey paint, that were scattered in the street close to the victim. A check on the serial number of the parts showed that they were from a Toyota Camry and police recovered a car matching that description that was also missing a side mirror and door handle that was registered to Dzaferovic.

The suspect allegedly told police that he was driving that car at the date, time and location of the crash.

A preliminary investigation found that the victim was either standing on the FDR or attempting to cross the highway when he was hit by the car, but no further information about how he got into the roadway was available.

CB6 gets new chair

New Community Board 6 Chair Rick Eggers (Photo courtesy of CB6)

New Community Board 6 Chair Rick Eggers (Photo courtesy of CB6)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Community Board 6 has a new chair in Murray Hill resident Rick Eggers, who was elected this past October. Eggers’s election brings an end to Stuyvesant Town’s reign over the board, as community residents Mark Thompson and Sandro Sherrod, respectively, have headed the body for the previous two three-year terms.

Eggers, who has lived in the district for 33 years and formally started as the board’s chair in November, was appointed to the board in 2008. He was a member of the Budget and Governmental Affairs Committee for eight years and served as chair on that committee for five years. He was also Vice Chair of the Board for the last three years before being elected Board Chair.

When the bylaws were revised in 2014, Eggers was chair of the Special Committee on Bylaws and was also a member of the Health and Education Committee for almost eight years. He represented the community board on the Bellevue Community Advisory Board and the Mount Sinai Beth Israel Community Advisory Council for about five years.

Eggers is currently retired but was previously a tax law specialist with the IRS and also previously did product research and product management for TIAA-CREF. He is currently a member of the New York County Democratic Committee and a member and officer of the Eleanor Roosevelt Democratic Club.

Eggers’s predecessor received a proclamation from Borough President Gale Brewer for his service that declared November 18, 2015 “Sandro Sherrod Appreciation Day” in Manhattan. State Senator Brad Hoylman also honored Sherrod with a proclamation, declaring December 16, 2015 as “Sandro Sherrod Appreciation Day” in the 27th Senate District.

In other CB6 news, District Manager Dan Miner parted ways with the board. Eggers said in a notice to board members in December that Miner was resigning to take a job involving community education on resilience, sustainability and energy efficiency. The position has yet to be filled.

Man killed in hit-and-run on the FDR

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

A 29-year-old man was hit by a car and killed in a hit-and-run on the FDR Drive near East 28th Street early on Friday. FDNY received a call around 12:35 a.m. and police responded to the scene, the northbound side, at about 1:05 a.m. The victim was taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

A preliminary investigation found that the victim was either standing on the FDR or was attempting to cross the highway when he was hit by the car, but no further information about how he got into the roadway was available. Police said that he was struck by a dark grey vehicle that did not remain on the scene and continued north. The NYPD said that the investigation is ongoing by the department’s Collision Investigation Squad.

Identification of the victim is pending family notification.

City insists no sex offenders live at shelter

Community residents expressed concern about sex offenders and violent felons. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Community residents expressed concern about sex offenders and violent felons. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

The status of the 30th Street Men’s Shelter, and whether sex offenders are still staying there was one of the main topics discussed at a forum on homelessness, which was attended by over 100 people.

The forum, held at the Epiphany Parish Hall on Tuesday evening, was hosted by City Councilmembers Dan Garodnick and Rosie Mendez. Representatives from the NYPD, the Department of Homeless Services and various non-profit agencies dedicated to assisting the homeless also showed up to discuss street outreach programs and employment resources made available to help homeless people get back on their feet.

Mayor Bill de Blasio recently appointed Human Resources Administration Commissioner Steven Banks to do a 90-day review of homeless services throughout the city and Banks was at the forum to focus on specific issues that affect the neighborhood, primarily the 30th Street Men’s Shelter.

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Police Watch: Officer assaulted at Bellevue, L train ‘Perv’ arrested

MAN ARRESTED FOR ‘ASSAULTING’ FEMALE OFFICER AT BELLEVUE
Police arrested 46-year-old Brian Smith for assault inside the Bellevue Hospital at 462 First Avenue last Tuesday at 11 a.m. While Smith was waiting for an evaluation from the Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program (CPEP), he allegedly spit on and kicked an officer in the groin, knocking him to the ground. Police said that after he kicked the first officer and another was restraining him, he grabbed the second officer’s hands, twisted her fingers and refused to let go. He allegedly kicked her in the chest, knocking her to the ground as well. Another officer restrained Smith until he could be sedated. The officer who was kicked in the groin was treated at the emergency room for an injury and the other officer received a sprained left wrist as a result of Smith allegedly grabbing her.

‘PERV’ ARRESTED AT FIRST AVENUE L STATION
Police arrested 27-year-old David Oakley for sexual abuse at the First Avenue L station last Saturday at 8:30 p.m. Police said that Oakley rubbed his groin area on the victim’s buttocks while on a Brooklyn-bound L train. The victim told police that she and Oakley didn’t know each other. Oakley allegedly attempted to flee and ran outside the station but he was apprehended at the main booth. He was also charged with resisting arrest.

WOMAN ARRESTED FOR ‘CHILD ABUSE’
Police arrested 35-year-old Ileasia Barrpaul for endangering the welfare of a child inside 344 East 28th Street last Wednesday at 4:37 a.m. Barrpaul, who police said was intoxicated and off her medication, allegedly locked her 10-year-old child outside the apartment and would not allow him back inside. Police said that the child was seen in the hallway missing socks and was unable to care for himself.

TWO ARRESTED FOR CAR ‘THEFT’
Police arrested 26-year-old Percius McKnight and 35-year-old Janaqual Ashaqua for grand larceny auto in front of 15 West 28th Street last Monday at 2:14 a.m. The victim and a witness called police and reported that McKnight and Ashaqua allegedly attempted to remove a 1998 Volvo from in front of the location. When police arrived, McKnight and Ashaqua were still on the scene and were taken into custody.

DEBIT CARD ‘THIEF’ BUSTED AT PHONE BOOTH WITH ‘K2’
Police arrested 21-year-old Divene Sanabria for possession of stolen property and an unclassified public health law misdemeanor at the corner of Sixth Avenue and West 15th Street last Monday at 3:05 p.m. Police said that Sanabria was at a phone booth in possession of a debit card that didn’t belong to him and after he was searched, he was allegedly found to be in possession of synthetic marijuana. Police said that he also had a bag of K2 in his jacket pocket and a pipe with K2 residue in his duffel bag.

TEEN ARRESTED FOR PHONE SNATCHING
Police arrested a teenager for grand larceny and possession of stolen property in front of 1165 Broadway on Sunday at 11:05 p.m. The victim told police that the teen snatched the cell phone out of her hands while she was walking on the sidewalk. Police searched the area at 10:45 p.m. around West 28th and Broadway and the teen was positively identified by the victim.

MAN NABBED FOR NOT PAYING BILL AT NIGHTCLUB
Police arrested 39-year-old Kenji Tokunaga for theft of services inside Studio Twenty One at 59 West 21st Street last Wednesday at 12:47 a.m. Police said that Tokunaga refused to pay a bill totaling $316.80 for services rendered.

CAB DRIVER ASSAULTED ON NEW YEAR’S EVE
Police arrested 23-year-old Moises Haiat for assault at the corner of East 17th Street and Park Avenue South on New Year’s Eve at 8:47 a.m. Haiat was a passenger in a cab and got into an argument with the driver after he was driven to the location he requested. Police said that Haiat punched the driver in the face, causing injury to his left eye. The driver refused medical attention at the scene but there was swelling around his eye.

MAN ARRESTED FOR CAB DRIVER ‘ASSAULT’
Thirty-year-old Michael Davis was arrested for criminal mischief at the corner of Sixth Avenue and West 21st Street last Wednesday at 2:50 a.m. Police said that Davis was in a cab and got into an argument with the driver about the destination. Davis allegedly began to grab at the driver through the open partition, then kicked out the rear passenger window. The driver told police that the window cost more than $250 to fix.

FIGHT AT 40/40 CLUB ON NEW YEAR’S
Police arrested 25-year-old Katherine Ramirez for assault inside the 40/40 Club at 6 West 25th Street on New Year’s Day at 3:54 a.m. Police said that Ramirez got into an argument with someone else inside the club and allegedly threw a glass at a witness. Police said that the glass missed the witness but struck someone else in the face, causing an injury.

‘AGGRESSIVE’ MAN ARRESTED AT TAJ LOUNGE
Police arrested 34-year-old Daunte Berry for disorderly conduct in front of Taj Lounge at 48 West 21st Street on New Year’s Day at 7 a.m. Police said that Berry was acting disorderly by screaming and yelling, and acting in an aggressive manner. When police attempted to put him in custody, he allegedly refused to comply and flailed his arms, refusing to place them behind his back. Berry was also charged with resisting arrest.

ASSAULT ON WEST 26TH
Police arrested 36-year-old Claude Harris for assault in front of 135 West 26th Street last Wednesday at 2:06 p.m. Police said that Harris punched the victim in the face, causing a lump on his forehead.

MAN BUSTED FOR ‘COKE’ ON WEST 26TH
Police arrested 23-year-old Michael Laford for possession of a controlled substance in front of 130 West 26th Street at 12:48 a.m. on New Year’s Day. Laford was snorting alleged cocaine from a key on a public sidewalk.

MAN BUSTED FOR ‘POT’ ON EAST 30TH
Police arrested 29-year-old Jamel Johnson for possession of marijuana in front of 230 East 30th Street last Saturday at 11:31 p.m. Police said that Johnson was in possession of a lit marijuana cigar on a public sidewalk.