Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership Business Improvement District planning to expand north, west

The Flatiron BID is responsible for the public plazas adjacent to the Flatiron building. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership will be hosting the first of multiple meetings next Thursday to get public input on a proposed expansion for the business improvement district (BID).

Executive Director James Mettham said that one of the goals of the proposed expansion is to fill in the gaps since the BID was first established in 2006 and create a more cohesive district that reflects the neighborhood.

“Part of the effort about expanding is to say look, Flatiron is growing, but the NoMad and Sixth Avenue corridors have changed pretty drastically as well,” he said. “We feel that there’s a symbiotic relationship between the neighborhoods and what’s good for one is good for the other.”

The BID’s current boundaries are generally 21st Street to the south, Sixth Avenue to the west, 28th Street to the north and Park Avenue South to the east, although there are some blocks that extend the district to Third Avenue near Baruch, and other parts of the district on the western side are cut off mid-block before Sixth Avenue.

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Cyclist killed by truck driver on Sixth Avenue

Cyclists paid their respect to the rider who was killed on Sixth Avenue. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel 

A truck driver killed a 20-year-old bicyclist on Monday morning at 9:25 a.m. on Sixth Avenue at West 23rd Street. When police responded to a 911 call about the collision, officers found the woman unconscious and unresponsive, lying on the street with trauma to her head. EMS responded to the scene and transported her to Bellevue Hospital, where she was pronounced deceased. 

A white Freightliner delivery truck and the cyclist were both traveling north on Sixth Avenue and a preliminary investigation found that the truck driver collided with the cyclist near the intersection of Sixth Avenue and West 23rd Street. Police said that the 54-year-old truck driver initially left the scene but returned shortly after, so he was not charged with leaving the scene of an accident. 

The driver was issued five summonses but police said that the summonses were all related to truck inspections and not the collision. The NYPD Collision Investigation Squad is investigating but the driver has not been arrested. 

Cyclists held a vigil and memorial on Monday evening at the spot where the woman was killed, leaving flowers and candles on the east side of Sixth Avenue between West 23rd and 24th Street where the collision occurred.

Mugger punches woman at L train station

Oct25 L train mugger1

Robbery suspect

Police are looking for a man who grabbed a woman’s purse and attacked her when she tried to get it back.

On Monday, October 8 about 12:30 p.m., the mugger approached the 23-year-old victim as she sat, riding the L train at Sixth Avenue on Monday, October 8. He then forcefully took her purse as the train entered the station. The woman got up and chased the mugger who darted out of the train. When the victim came close to getting bag her bag, the man punched her in the face and she let the purse go.

The man then fled in an unknown direction and the victim, police said, was uninjured and refused medical attention at the scene. The purse contained roughly $60.

Oct25 L train mugger2

Robbery suspect

The suspect is described as black, in his 20s or 30s; 6’0″ tall and 180 lbs., and was last seen wearing all dark clothing.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the CrimeStoppers website at nypdcrimestoppers.com, on Twitter @NYPDTips or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.


Subway ‘groper’ nabbed in Union Sq.

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police arrested a 24-year-old man for groping a woman inside the 14th Street/Sixth Avenue subway station after he was spotted in Union Square almost a week later.

Police said that on May 27, Valence Simpson slapped and grabbed the woman’s buttocks while inside the station at 1:36 p.m. When she turned around and said, “How dare you?” Simpson allegedly responded, “I just did.”

The victim told police that while Simpson was walking away from her, he allegedly turned around to face her, walking backwards while making faces at her, at which point she reportedly used her cell phone to take photos of him.

Police created a wanted poster from the photo and an officer spotted Simpson inside Union Square Park around 6:20 p.m. last Thursday. When police showed Simpson the poster, he allegedly identified himself as the person in the photograph.

He was charged with sexual abuse. His lawyer did not want to comment on the case.

Creep masturbates in front of teen on L train

Alleged masturbator

Alleged masturbator

Police are hunting a man who masturbated in front of a 14-year-old girl on the L train going from Union Square to Sixth Avenue.

The victim told police it happened last Monday shortly after she boarded the train at Union Square at 1 p.m. But when she got to the next stop, the man followed her as she left the train and went into the mezzanine area of the station. At that point, the victim left the station while the man got onto another train.

The suspect is described as black, about 35 years old, 5’5″-5’6″ tall, 140-150 lbs., and has a medium build. He was last seen with a goatee, wearing a black coat with fur on the collar.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS or for Spanish 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers Website at www.nypdcrimestoppers.com or texting their tips to 274637(CRIMES) then enter TIP577.


Police Watch: Vendors arrested for ‘forgery,’ three arrested in robbery at Broadway deli

Lee Weston, 38, was arrested inside the Beth Israel Medical Center at 281 First Avenue for petit larceny and possession of stolen property last Saturday at 11:55 p.m. Police said that Weston, an employee at the hospital, took property from the lost and found without permission.

Police arrested five people for forgery in separate incidents last week.
Christina Cho, 54, was allegedly offering fake Cartier costume jewelry in front of 832 Sixth Avenue last Thursday at 1:10 p.m. Police said that she was displaying 33 rings, 60 earrings, 23 necklaces and 13 bracelets.
Un Shin, 57, was also arrested last Thursday at 12:08 p.m. in front of 830 Sixth Avenue. Shin was allegedly selling 85 hairclips with a counterfeit trademark logo for Burberry.
Police said that 45-year-old Md Alam was selling four bottles of counterfeit Lady Gaga perfume in front of 1175 Broadway last Thursday at 3:05 p.m.
Xuan Chen, 46, was allegedly offering two cufflinks for sale that had a trademark counterfeit for Cartier in front of 127 West 27th Street last Friday at 12:45 p.m. Police said that a representative from Global Security and Investigative Services confirmed that the items were counterfeit.
Police arrested 54-year-old Jung Kim in front of 50 West 29th Street last Friday at 3:45 p.m. for allegedly offering more than a hundred hairclips with a counterfeit Chanel logo.

Police arrested three men who allegedly robbed New Andy’s Deli at 873 Broadway close to midnight last Friday. Pablo Ruiz-Mendoza, 25, allegedly pulled a knife while demanding money from the victim to buy him beer. Though no knife was found at the scene, police believe Ruiz-Mendoza was working with 22-year-olds Jorge Otlica and Fernando Martinez, who police said were in possession of dollar bills with a white residue. All three were charged with robbery and Otlica and Martinez were charged with possession of a controlled substance.

Police arrested 25-year-old Zachary Spain for intoxicated driving last Sunday at 12:40 a.m. at the corner of Park Avenue South and East 20th Street. Spain was involved in an accident at the intersection and was allegedly behind the wheel with the engine running while there was a strong odor of alcohol on his breath. A Breathalyzer test was conducted at the scene with a BAC reading of .211, police said.

Police arrested two people in the last week for driving with a suspended license and were charged with an unclassified traffic misdemeanor.
Fifty-eight-year-old Mamy Toure was arrested in front of 133 East 14th Street last Wednesday at 12:17 p.m. Toure was driving east on 14th Street and allegedly had his cell phone in his hand while he was driving. Police said that his license also came back suspended for “operating a vehicle while using a portable electronic device.”
Ross Ramsay, 49, was arrested last Wednesday at 10:58 a.m. on the FDR at East 23rd Street. Ramsay was allegedly driving a Hummer while holding a cell phone in his right hand at chest level while his vehicle was in motion. Police said that his license came back as suspended on January 27 for failure to pay New York State taxes.

Police arrested 21-year-old Jaimon Lewis for criminal trespassing inside 240 First Avenue last Monday at 9:26 p.m. Police said that Lewis had previously been kicked out of Stuyvesant Town and warned not to return. Lewis is not a resident in the building but he was allegedly inside the building and was found sitting in the hallway.

Police arrested 41-year-old Devon Moye for violating an order of protection inside the Union Square subway station last Monday at 12:25 a.m. Police were responding to complaints of a man, Moye, and a woman fighting in the station.
Police said that the victim told them she had an order of protection against Moye and he was arrested, but he allegedly flailed his arms to prevent being handcuffed. Police said that there was a struggle and he also allegedly grabbed a handrail and refused to let go. He was charged with an unclassified public administration misdemeanor and felony, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.

Police arrested 32-year-old Abdias Vendrell for impersonation of a public servant last Wednesday at 11:37 a.m. at Union Square East and East 14th Street. Vendrell was allegedly inside a truck parked in a “police only” spot and had an NYPD logo on the dashboard. Police said that he identified himself as an NYPD traffic agent. After he was read his rights, police said that he told them he displayed an NYPD handbook in his vehicle to avoid a summons.

Police arrested 22-year-old Rolando McClymont-Brown for reckless endangerment at the corner of Park Avenue South and East 18th Street last Friday at 4:49 a.m. Police said that McClymont-Brown was driving west on East 11th Street and didn’t signal to turn left onto Fourth Avenue. When an officer tried to pull him over using lights and sirens, he allegedly didn’t pull over and was speeding, weaving in and out of traffic to Park Avenue South and East 18th Street, where officers were finally able to get him to stop. Police also said that he gave officers a fake name.
McClymont-Brown was also charged with reckless driving, marijuana possession, disorderly conduct, driving as an unlicensed operator and speeding.

Ivelisse Pena, 24, was arrested inside the 13th Precinct at 230 East 21st Street for grand larceny and forgery last Friday at 2:20 p.m. Pena entered the People’s United Bank at 127 Seventh Avenue and allegedly posed as another person to remove money from a checking account. Police said that she presented a Washington State ID card with her picture but someone else’s personal information. She allegedly withdrew $4,578.78 from the account.

Valerio Ek, 41, was arrested for grand larceny last Wednesday at 5 p.m. inside the 13th Precinct. Police said that Ek had entered 115 East 21st Street and took a sanding machine that didn’t belong to him.

Police arrested 48-year-old Henry O’Sullivan for intoxicated driving last Thursday at 8:20 p.m. at the corner of Sixth Avenue and West 14th Street. Police were responding to the scene of an accident where O’Sullivan allegedly collided with another vehicle. O’Sullivan was operating the vehicle and had the key in the ignition with the engine running, and police said that he had a strong odor of alcohol on his breath and had slurred speech. Police administered a Breathalyzer test at the Seventh Precinct at 9:35 p.m. and the reading was .19.

Thirty-year-old Jose Hernandez was arrested inside the Union Square subway station for impersonation and an unclassified violation of New York State laws last Friday at 2:13 a.m. Police said that Hernandez was riding a bicycle inside the station, creating hazardous conditions for others in the area. Police also told Hernandez that he would be subject to arrest if he provided a fake name. He allegedly told police a fake name and birthday but police said that he eventually admitted his real name and birthday.

Police arrested 24-year-old Mark Shifrin and 25-year-old Alex Bronshteyn for possession of a controlled substance and criminal trespassing inside 224 East 28th Street last Friday at 10:54 p.m. Police said that two men and a third (charge since withdrawn) were trespassing on the ninth floor B stairwell and were in possession of narcotics. Narcotics were allegedly found in the third man’s mouth. Police said that Bronshteyn and Shifrin had narcotics in their jacket pockets.