Long Island college student Kerry Fitzsimons, 21, among three killed in fire near Marist College


| jlane@queenscourier.com |

Graphic by Jay Lane
Graphic by Jay Lane

Long Island college student Kerry Fitzsimons, 21, among three killed in fire near Marist College

A Long Island college student was one of three people killed in a fire that ripped through an off-campus home near Marist College in upstate Poughkeepsie. The family of Kerry Fitzsimons, 21, of Commack, L.I., is struggling to comprehend the tragedy that took her life. Fitzsimons died early Saturday, trapped in an off-campus house she shared with other Marist students. “It’s unimaginable, the devastation,” a grieving aunt, who declined to give her name, said on Sunday. “She was an awesome, gorgeous , beautiful person.” Also killed were honor-roll fashion student Eva Block, 21, of Woodbridge, Conn., and aspiring blogger Kevin Johnson, 21, of New Canaan, Conn., a communications major at Dutchess Community College. Read More:  Daily News

 

Men killed in Manhattan subway tunnel and at station staircase in Queens

Four people were killed — two on the L train in Manhattan — in four separate accidents in the city transit system on Saturday. At about 10 p.m., straphangers were greeted by the gruesome scene of a man’s head wedged between the train car and the platform when they stepped off the L train at the Sixth Ave. subway station. Cops could not say how the man became pinned by the train. Read More: Daily News

Man admits killing Brooklyn dancer after meeting her at Manhattan club

A convicted sex offender who picked up an aspiring dancer from Texas at a Manhattan nightclub three years ago admitted Monday that he killed her in his upstate apartment because she became upset that he had a girlfriend. Michael Mele, wearing a dark suit, unexpectedly pleaded guilty to charges of manslaughter and evidence tampering in the killing of 25-year-old Laura Garza. The plea came just before the start of his murder trial in Orange County court. Read More: New York Post

 

 

Firecracker blast kills Queens man

A firecracker blast killed a Queens man inside his home this morning, cops said. The 50-year-old man was holding a firecracker in his hand when it went off at 9:28 a.m. inside his hallway in Ozone Park, police said. Other relatives were home at the time of the explosion, but no major damage was caused to the single family house on 111th Avenue. Read More: New York Post

 

Man convicted of $100M mortgage scam pleads guilty to plotting hit on ‘rat’

The convicted mastermind of a $100 million mortgage scam pleaded guilty today to plotting to take out a contract on the life of the “rat” who helped put him behind bars. Aaron Hand, who is already serving 8 1/3 to 25 years in prison for mortgage fraud, will have an 8- to 16-year sentence slapped on top of his existing prison term when he is sentenced Feb. 6 before Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Laura Ward. He could have faced up to 25 years in prison if he’d gone to trial and been convicted of attempted murder and conspiracy to commit murder. Read More: New York Post

 

Godmother bilked daughter of 9/11 victim out of $1M: judge

Shanhellen Jimenez was in seventh grade when her mother was killed in the World Trade Center attacks. That year, the 12-year-old was awarded nearly $1 million by the federal September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. The money — the lion’s share to become available to her when she turned 18 — was more than the middle-schooler could comprehend. Her divorced mom, Elena Ledesma, had worked as a maintenance supervisor for Marsh & McLennan on the 93rd floor of the north tower, taking home $400 a week. On that paltry paycheck, she supported Shanhellen and Angelina, her 17-year-old daughter, as well as her ailing mother, Candida Hernandez. Read More: New York Post