Tag Archives: NYC

NYC’s murder rate rises due to gang violence

de blasio

Maybe the good mayor should focus on his city’s crime instead of illegal aliens at the border and the SCOTUS nomination.

From NY Post: Warring gangs have driven New York’s murder rate to an 8 percent spike through the first half of the year, authorities said Tuesday.

The city saw 147 murders through the end of June, an increase of 11 from the 136 notched to the same point in 2017.

“We were all quite sober about the fact that trying to repeat what happened in 2017 was going to be very, very difficult,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio at the briefing, invoking last year’s record-low crime numbers. “There’s also real work we have to do and some real specific things we have to address.”

Among those issues is gang violence that has accounted for roughly one-third of this year’s slayings — and spilled over to the mainstream last month with the mistaken-identity slaying of innocent Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz by a band of blade-wielding Trinitarios.

“When it comes to the homicides, it’s around 30 percent [gang-related],” said NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan. “When we come to non-fatal shootings, it’s around 40 percent where there’s some sort of gang nexus. And those are the ones we know about.”

Much of that bloodshed has come in the Bronx, which has seen 51 homicides so far this year, up 64.5 percent from last year’s 31 to the same date, department stats show. “The Bronx is driving the murder year-to-date,” Monahan noted.

To combat those trends, the NYPD is deploying additional officers to two of the borough’s most crime-ridden precincts: the 40th, which hosted Tuesday’s meeting, and the 48th, where gangs and homicide intersected in horrifying fashion last month with the slaying of Guzman-Feliz, a 15-year-old aspiring cop.

Guzman-Feliz was yanked out of a bodega and hacked to death with machetes and knives by a mob of Trinitarios gangbangers who confused him with a rival. Twelve suspects have been arrested so far in the gruesome murder.

Despite the troubling homicide spike, overall crime reports are down 1.8 percent on the year, including drops in robberies, felony assaults, and shootings, officials said.

Rape reports have spiked by 33.2 percent in 2018 — from 678 last year to 903 this year — but Monahan attributed much of the hike to sexual assault in the news, as well as increased reporting of domestic attacks and previously unreported incidents from years past.

DCG

Mom permanently separated from her son when he was brutally executed says she hasn’t heard a peep from de Blasio

guzman feliz

Guzman-Feliz aspired to be a cop.

Her son was brutally killed by gang members with machetes. This story went viral on Twitter and has caused much outrage on social media.

Yet de Blasio has plenty of time to head down south to try and visit illegal alien children.

From NY Post: An innocent city kid who dreamed of becoming a cop was executed on a city street last week, yet Mayor de Blasio and Police Commissioner James O’Neill had yet to reach out to his family with even a phone call days later.

“I have not heard from them. No, no one in their offices contact me,” Lesandro Guzman-Feliz’s tearful mom, Leandra Feliz, told The Post on Sunday, stopping at one point to kiss a framed photo of her dead son that she clutched during the interview.

“This is him,” she said motioning to the photo. “He was a very good kid. He dreamed about being police.

Guzman-Feliz, 15, was stabbed to death Wednesday outside a Bronx deli by a pack of gangbangers in a suspected case of mistaken identity.

Instead of paying his condolences to Lesandro’s family Sunday, de Blasio instead spent the day holding press conferences on speed cameras and attending the Gay Pride Parade.

A de Blasio spokeswoman said Hizzoner would call the mom “soon” but could not say specifically when pressed by The Post.

NYPD officials said O’Neill would attend a wake for Guzman-Feliz on Monday to pay his respects.

Leandra Feliz spent Sunday making funeral arrangements for her son. He will be buried Wednesday.

Council Speaker Corey Johnson called the killing “a horrible crime against one of our young people. We need people like Lesandro in this city, and it’s just such a tragedy to lose him in this brutal, brutal manner. His is such a loss for all New York. I’m sure he would’ve have grown up to be a police officer and make this city a better place,” Johnson told The Post in a statement.

At least five men have been arrested in the slaying, according to police sources.

The goons — believed to be part of the ruthless Dominican gang Trinitarios — mistook Guzman-Feliz for another youth who allegedly taped a gang member’s female family member having sex, according to police sources.

DCG

De Blasio aides pressures council members to withdrawal objections to city budget

bunny popcorn

From NY Post: Mayor Bill de Blasio likes outspoken Democrats — until they criticize him.

Top mayoral aides pressured nearly a dozen City Council members who signed a letter critical of de Blasio’s fiscal 2019 executive budget this week, in an attempt to get them to withdraw their opposition, sources said.

The mayor’s chief of staff, Emma Wolfe, and legislative affairs director, Jeff Lynch, put the squeeze on legislators both by phone and in person — even threatening to pull the mayor’s political support down the road if they persisted, council sources said.

“When you’re forced to start using pressure tactics to protect your $89 billion boondoggle, you’ve clearly abandoned the high road,” said Reginald Johnson, a spokesman for Bronx Councilman Mark Gjonaj, who crafted the anti-budget letter signed by 27 members.

It’s a budget built on the backs of struggling homeowners, renters and business owners by raising property taxes by $1.6 billion, neglecting the city’s reserves, doing little to help the neediest with access to affordable mass transit — and it comes complete with [drug] injection sites and neighborhood prisons,” he added.

“Good luck selling that to New Yorkers.”

Ironically, it was only last month that the mayor criticized Gov. Andrew Cuomo for engaging in a similar pressure tactic, when he allegedly twisted the arms of elected officials in a bid to have them skip an anti-Cuomo rally.

“You shouldn’t threaten organizations that are doing good work at the community level because they have different political views,” the mayor said in mid-April. “That’s the kind of things that happened in dictatorships, not in democracies.”

Council members, who have been on an independent streak since electing Corey Johnson as their speaker in January, said that same logic should apply to the mayor’s strong-arm tactics against them.

“An administration that professes to be progressive should have greater respect for the free conscience of council members,” said Bronx Councilman Ritchie Torres, chair of the new Oversight and Investigation Committee.

“The role of council members is to advocate for what’s best for the public, not to do the bidding of our mayor,” added Torres. “Bill de Blasio is the mayor, not the messiah. We are independent council members, not his disciples.”

With a majority of members having signed the letter, this year’s budget battle is shaping up to be more acrimonious than usual.

City Hall officials said any phone calls made to council members are part of normal budget talks. “It’s our job to lobby other elected officials for the benefit of New Yorkers,” City Hall spokeswoman Freddi Goldstein said.

DCG

Cheapskate: Tax returns show de Blasio paid more for tax preparation than he gave to charities in 2017

bill de blasio

Shocker, not.

The mayor has a net worth of $1.5 million.

From NY Post: Charity starts at home, but not if that home is Gracie Mansion.

Mayor Bill de Blasio and his wife gave a grand total of $350 to charity in 2017 on an adjusted gross income of $223,449, according to tax returns they released Tuesday.

It marked a significant drop from the first couple’s charitable giving in 2016 — when de Blasio was up for re-election — of $2,088 to charity.

Asked about the donation gap, mayoral spokesman Austin Finan responded that “the mayor is not a rich man.”

“He and the first lady help their son pay tuition to one of the most expensive schools in the country,” Finan added. The couple listed the tuition payments at Yale University for their son, Dante, as $51,400 in 2017.

They also listed their two Park Slope rental properties as generating tax losses of more than $12,000, despite collecting a combined $104,000 in rent last year.

The fee for their tax preparer was $500.

DCG

Gonna be tough on crime? De Blasio aide arrested with gun was riding in SUV that reeked of marijuana

De Blasio aide busted with gun in car

Suspended de Blasio aide, Reagan Stevens

I’m sure anti-gun advocate de Blasio will not let his aide plea bargain her way out of this gun crime, right?

From NY Post: The Mayor de Blasio aide charged with riding around with a loaded gun was nabbed in an SUV that reeked of marijuana, according to a criminal complaint.

Reagan Stevens, 42, was in the back seat of the 2002 Infiniti when she and two others were allegedly caught with the loaded 9mm Hi-Point semiautomatic pistol tucked in a green velvet bag in the glove compartment, court papers said.

Cops noticed there was a “strong odor of marijuana” wafting from the SUV, which was double parked in Jamaica, Queens, near the scene of a shooting Saturday night.

Stevens — whose mother, Deborah Stevens, is a Queens Criminal Court judge and whose stepfather is an acting Queens Supreme Court justice — works as a deputy director in the mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice.

The Bay Ridge resident manages youth and strategic initiatives, including implementing a state law that will raise the age at which kids can be prosecuted as adults for nonviolent crimes from 16 to 18.

The gun, which had its serial number scratched off, was loaded with two rounds of ammunition, and a spent round was found on the driver’s side floor.

Cops also found a paintball gun and carbon dioxide cartridges from the rear cargo area of the vehicle and a gravity knife in 25-year-old driver Caesar Forbes’ waistband.

Another man, Montel Hughes, 24, who was sitting in the passenger seat, was charged with marijuana possession after cops allegedly found five Ziploc bags of pot in his coat pocket, the complaint said. A gravity knife was also recovered from the pocket of his pants.

Stevens, Hughes and Forbes were each charged with two counts of criminal possession of a weapon. Forbes and Hughes were charged with criminal possession of a weapon related to the gravity knives and Forbes was ticketed for double parking.

Stevens was suspended without pay.

Their arrests followed a burst of five gunshots that activated an NYPD ShotSpotter gunfire-detection device at 9:42 p.m. Saturday at 174th Street and 109th Avenue, sources said.

The trio was parked near the corner of 177th Street and 106th Avenue and arrested around 10:25 p.m.

DCG

College dropout refuses to leave her NYC dorm room

lisa s palmer

Future demorat politician in the making.

From NY Post: She loves the college life — just not the classes. Hunter College is waging a court battle to evict a stubborn student who refuses to leave her dorm room some two years after dropping out.

Delaware native Lisa S. Palmer — who has not paid rent since 2016 — refuses to leave Room E579 at the school’s 425 E. 25th St. co-ed dormitory, according to an eviction lawsuit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court.

The 32-year-old “racked up a staggering $94,000 in unpaid residence hall charges on account of her continued occupancy, all the while ignoring Hunter College’s service of additional vacate notices,” said the suit.

“As of today, June 7, 2016 you are still in occupancy of the aforementioned room,” Michell Quock, assistant director of residence life, wrote to Palmer two summers ago.

Last fall a Hunter attorney continued the battle to get rid of Palmer, sending her an eviction notice that said in bold-faced type: “THIRTY DAY NOTICE OF TERMINATION.”

“You are required to vacate and surrender the premises on or before Oct. 31, 2017 at 12:00 p.m.,” the attorney wrote.

But the former geography major, who now works for an architecture firm, refused to budge. “I plan on fighting the lawsuit and while I fight it, I’m going to stay,” Palmer told The Post from outside her messy, 100-square-foot single, which is adorned with a lava lamp, a dream catcher and piles of dirty dishes.

Though school officials say Palmer dropped out, she insists Hunter refused to let her register for fall 2016 classes after she disputed her housing and tuition bill.

“I felt that it was a miscommunication initially, but after I met with the dean I felt that they were starting to treat me unfairly. It was like, ‘Get out,’” she said.

Only full-time students who maintain a minimum grade point average and keep current on their room and board fees can stay in the dorms, the suit says.

Palmer, who first enrolled in Hunter in 2010 after a stint at St. John’s University in Queens, said dorm life is “really lonely” for someone in her 30s. “I feel very isolated,” she said, noting that Hunter moved her to a wing that’s only occupied by a middle-aged nurse, whom the college is also trying to evict.

The college wants to boot a total of nine nurses who were given rooms in various wings of the E. 25th Street building when it was owned by Bellevue Hospital. The resident nurses include 67-year-old Derek DeFreitas who kept a dormitory room “crash pad” at the address for decades.

DCG

NYC tax dollars at work: School bus driver fired after racking up 37 complaints

sumatie kalladeen bus driver facebook

Former bus driver Sumatie Kalladeen/Facebook photo

Via NY Post: City school-bus driver Sumatie Kalladeen’s scoldings terrified a little girl to the point where she was too afraid to ride the bus. The city Department of Education fired Kalladeen — but not before she racked up 37 complaints since 2001, seven of which were “substantiated,” records show.

She was suspended at least twice before, once after leaving 24 kids and teachers behind on a field trip, and once after she was arrested for assaulting her husband.

That a driver with so many offenses could remain behind the wheel for so long illustrates the city’s lax and ineffective disciplinary system for school-bus personnel, insiders charge.

The DOE’s Office of Pupil Transportation (OPT) has gone too easy on some bad bus drivers and attendants because it caters to the school-bus companies it contracts with to hire the workers, one OPT investigator alleged.

“They make sure the bus companies don’t lose too many drivers due to disciplinary decisions,” the investigator said.

The OPT worker said a seasoned supervisor who tried to get rid of lenient investigators was stopped by his boss. DOE contract officials even pressure investigators on behalf of the bus companies, he charged.

Making it worse, the number of bus investigators has dwindled from 12 to five since last summer, and each one struggles with more than 200 open cases at a time.

Kalladeen denied wrongdoing. “To my knowledge, no one was crying,” she said of the little girl.

In another disturbing case, attendant Patricia DiBenedetto was accused of throwing a boy off the bus before his regular stop — and later using a racial slur. “He’s a “troublemaking n—-r,” DiBenedetto told the kid’s mother when asked why her son was abandoned, records state.

The city Department of Education suspended DiBenedetto, but she kept her job.

DiBenedetto generated a dozen complaints for “obscene language.” Last May, she rang a school’s exit bell for 30 to 40 seconds — so long that administrators thought it was an emergency. The principal described DiBenedetto as “very aggressive and angry with the children.”

The Department of Education insisted all was done by the book. “All bus drivers involved in misconduct were appropriately disciplined,” a DOE rep said.

DCG