Tag Archives: 106th Precinct

UPDATE: Missing 13-year-old Howard Beach boy found at train station


| mhayes@queenscourier.com

PHOTO COURTESY OF DREGER FAMILY

A 13-year-old initially thought to have possibly been kidnapped was found just trying to go to the beach.

Griffin Dreger, who was thought to be missing Friday morning, was found at the at the Jamaica LIRR station the same day around 3 p.m., unharmed. Police said he was trying to buy a train ticket to Montauk Point.

This morning at about 6:40 a.m., Dreger went to take out the trash, just as he does every morning outside his Howard Beach co-op. After a few minutes, Dreger’s stepfather, Juan Palacios, went outside to find him, only to realize he wasn’t there.

“I just started screaming his name,” Palacios said. “I thought he got kidnapped.”

Palacios and his wife called police, and a search ensued. His wife spent a portion of the day with detectives while family and friends placed “missing” flyers around their Lindenwood neighborhood.

After the initial missing report, over a dozen cops, at least a dozen detectives, three police dogs and helicopters were sent out to find the missing boy, according to a police source.

As the facts came in, police started to look at the case “more as a runaway” and not as an “abduction,” the source said.

“Initially . . . we started thinking maybe there is a chance [of kidnapping], but now most of the facts are pointing to a runaway,” said the law enforcement source.

Palacios’ mother said “he’s a good kid, he wouldn’t run away.”

“He’s a good kid,” echoed neighbor Annmarie Hegarty. “He doesn’t roam the boulevard. I always ask, ‘Where’s Griffin?’ They say he’s upstairs studying.”

Palacios said last night Dreger wanted him, his stepfather and mother to all “play hooky” and spend the day together.

A video camera near the dumpster caught Dreger this morning “jogging” to the trashcan, throwing in the bag and then “jogging” away. Police said there was no urgency in how he was moving, Palacios said.

“We’re hoping he’s playing hooky,” he said. “I hope he comes back. I hope he’s alright.”

 

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Man fatally stabbed in South Ozone Park


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

A 19-year-old was stabbed to death on Linden Boulevard Friday night.

Police responded to a 9-1-1 call around 9 p.m. on Linden Boulevard, where they found Danthony McDonald with a stab wound to the chest.

EMS transported McDonald, who lived nearby, to Jamaica Hospital where he was pronounced dead upon arrival.

No arrests have been made at this time, and the investigation is ongoing.

Queens officers win Cop of the Month awards


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Terence M. Cullen

The Jamaica Rotary Club honored police officers of Patrol Borough Queens South on Wednesday, May 30 with Cop of the Month Awards.

Officers Jose Vasquezmiranda and Matthew Lewis of the 113th Precinct were recognized for a May 14 arrest that led to the recovery of a loaded .25-caliber handgun.

Officer Jennifer Martinez of the 106th Precinct was cited for arresting a 17-year-old suspect wanted in connection with the sexual assault of a 15-yearold girl. The suspect was later charged with firstdegree rape.

Officers Corey Harris and Eugene Hunter of the 102nd Precinct won awards for helping track down a stolen iPhone. Pursuit of the suspect eventually ran into East New York, Brooklyn.

Sergeant Mary Humburg and police officer Charles Lovett of the 103rd Precinct were recognized for the April 10 arrest of four men trying to break into a house. The suspects had a total of 40 previous arrests between them.

 

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Officer honored for drug, gun bust


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Terence M. Cullen

Police Officer Frank Calafiore was honored as the 106th Precinct Community Council’s May Cop of the Month.

Calafiore, part of the anti-crime unit, was cited for the April 11 arrest of a suspect and for recovering narcotics and a loaded firearm.

The suspect, 18, followed a woman to her South Ozone Park home and pointed a gun at her, according to Deputy Inspector Thomas Pascale.

Calafiore and other officers from the unit then followed the suspect into a nearby home. Inside, police found five people, Pascale said, and detained them while cops searched the house. A loaded 9-mm. gun and marijuana were recovered. Calafiore then obtained a search warrant and recovered 200 Xanax pills.

 

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Rape suspect caught after jumping subway turnstile


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

File photo

A Queens man wanted for an August rape was apprehended after he was arrested for subway fare evasion, said police.

Tuesday afternoon an officer observed Kenny Campbell, a 30-year-old  Jamaica resident, jumping the turnstile at the Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer subway station, and immediately placed him under arrest.

Afterwards, authorities discovered that he was suspected in a rape that took place in south central Queens.

During the crime Campbell allegedly broke into the victim’s home, strangled her with an electrical cord and raped her.

Campbell has been charged for both the rape and theft of service for jumping the turnstile.

 

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Racino robber faces 25 years


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

Resorts World

Prosecutors did their own snatch and grab.

The suspect nabbed for robbing Resorts World Casino New York City in late June waived his extradition rights on Wednesday, August 1, and will be moved to Queens from Monroe County, Pennsylvania, officials said.

Kevin Lides, 23, of Briarwood, had been named as the culprit by the district attorney’s office after the note he passed to a teller — demanding cash and threatening the teller’s life — was found to have his fingerprints. There was also surveillance video placing the suspect in the casino at the time of the robbery.

For security reasons, it has not been announced when Lides will be moved back to Queens, officials said.

Should Lides be convicted for taking around $63,000 in cash from the casino, he could face up to 25 years in prison, according to the DA’s office.

The arrest was applauded by local politicians and Resorts World officials, highlighting the Racino’s surveillance system and its cooperation with the 106th Precinct as pivotal to Lides’ capture.

“This arrest proves that our surveillance system is working,” said Resorts World spokesperson Stefan Friedman. “Through close collaboration with the NYPD and the information revealed on our state-of-the-art on-site surveillance technology, we were able to assist the police in apprehending the suspect.”

“I believe that the safety and security of the visitors to Resorts World should always be a high priority,” said State Senator Joseph Addabbo, who pushed for better security in the wake of the robbery. “I appreciate all the efforts of law enforcement involved in this arrest; I am most grateful and proud of the work done by our 106th Precinct and its detectives.”

Cars, TVs being stolen in south Queens


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

Police from the 106th Precinct are warning residents of Ozone Park, South Ozone Park and Wakefield to be on the look for robbers who have been entering through windows of the first floor of homes.

When the robbers enter, usually through open windows, police said, they will take car keys and then steal the resident’s car. In other instances, the thieves have taken TVs from homes, police said.

The robberies began on Monday, August 6. Police encourage residents to lock the windows of their home’s first floor, and safely store car keys.

Anyone who has been a victim of these robberies, or has information on the thieves, are encouraged to call the precinct’s detective squad at 718-845-2260 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

 

New cops join 106th


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

The Courier/Photo by Alexa Altman

Following numerous requests from residents and officials for more police officers, the 106th Precinct has added 15 members to its expanded force.

The additional officers were introduced to the public at the precinct’s monthly meeting on Wednesday, May 9 by Captain Thomas Pascale.

Senator Joseph Addabbo welcomed the cops during the meeting, congratulating Pascale on the new additions and thanking him for keeping the neighborhood safe.

Regardless of the inclusion, Addabbo surmises the area continuously requires extra police.

“While I’ll always be grateful for [additional] cops, I’ll always advocate for more,” said Addabbo.

According to Addabbo, the 106th Precinct loses officers every summer, between Memorial Day and Labor Day, to reassignments in the Rockaways.
Anticipating the area’s first summer following the opening of Resorts World Casino New York, four additional officers will be designated to the entertainment facility during the weekends.

Addabbo feels there has not necessarily been a recent spike in crime, contrary to recent published reports. He added that area police deal mainly with grand larcenies and burglaries, rather than major, violent crimes.

“We should never just react to spikes in crime. We should prevent them,” said Addabbo. “Local residents want to see a patrol car come down their block. They want to see a presence.”

According to CompStat, the number of grand larcenies in the 106th Precinct over the past year has increased by 35.2 percent.
Community Council president Frank Dardani, who advocated for more officers on behalf of local residents, claims the request for additional police is an ongoing occurrence in the 106th Precinct.

According to Dardani, the extra cops come from impact precincts – ones with high numbers of gun-related and violent crimes – and have been on the job for several years. Dardani said that rookie officers are often sent to work these neighborhoods to dissipate crime by flooding them with an obvious police presence. In Queens, the 101st, 103rd and 113th Precincts are impacts, Dardani said.

He feels the opening of Resorts World should have earned the area between 45 and 50 additional officers.

Dardani believes the entire city is in need of an expanded police presence, claiming that New York has been down roughly 8,000 officers since Rudy Giuliani was mayor. He also alleged that more officers are retiring than are joining the force.

According to 106th Precinct Community Affairs Officer Kenny Zorn, the new officers began patrolling the area last week.

“It’s just good to have more people,” said Zorn. “They made it better than it was.”

New cops join 106th precinct


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

DSC_0321

Fresh out of the academy, 15 newly minted police officers joined the 106th Precinct. The rookie rangers were introduced to the public at the precinct’s monthly meeting on Wednesday, May 9 by Captain Thomas Pascale. On hand to welcome the recruits was Senator Joseph Addabbo who congratulated Pascale for obtaining extra law enforcement officials. According to Addabbo, the tourist traffic at Resorts World Casino and the relocation of cops to the Rockaways during the summer caused the precinct to garner more assistance.

Lindenwood Alliance tackles DOT, DOE issues


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

The March meeting of the Lindenwood Alliance featured a special dedication to Thomas Pascale, captain of the 106th Precinct.

“From the beginning, he has been supportive of our civic community,” said Lindenwood Alliance co-founder and president, Christina Gold. “He’s someone in a position of leadership who has been in support of this group. He has come to the majority of our meetings, which usually the captains do not. We wanted to show our appreciation for him.”

Gold said one of the group’s main purposes is to connect residents with their local officials and police departments.

Several traffic issues, including a particularly unsafe intersection located at the corner of 88th Street and 153rd Avenue, were addressed during the meeting on Monday, March 12 at the Rockwood Park Jewish Center.

According to Gold, the Department of Transportation (DOT) is revisiting the situation and plans to address the area she says is “dangerous for pedestrians.”

Parents of students who attend P.S. 232 in Lindenwood were present at the meeting as well to express their ill feelings towards an alleged decision to remove the special education program from the school. According to Gold, the parents were informed by faculty and staff that P.S. 232’s classes for learning disabled children would be phased out. Gold said she plans to meet with the school’s principal to discuss the situation further and hopes to bring staff from District 27 to a future meeting.

 

Officials dispel rumors of crime spikes near Racino


| mchan@queenscourier.com

While reported rumors surface about crime spikes near the Racino, officials hope to dispel the so-called fallacies.

A recent New York Post article alleged petit larcenies and misdemeanor assaults have increased within the 106th Precinct — which covers the new Resorts World Casino — though they say it’s unclear whether the offenses can be tied to the South Ozone Park gambling operation.

The published story started a flurry of worry, according to Captain Thomas Pascale, the 106th Precinct’s commanding officer.

However, local officials said so far there’s no cause for concern.

“There’s no indication that any increase in crime is related to activities at the casino,” said Betty Braton, chair of Community Board 10. “We work closely with the police department and casino security to monitor what is actually going on. So far, there’s nothing out of the ordinary.”

According to the Post, “at least three” separate crimes have occurred on casino property, including “a car stolen from a parking lot, a dropped wallet snatched in the Racino by a patron, and one gambler who tried to use a counterfeit bill in a slot machine.”

Though Stefan Friedman, spokesperson for Resorts World, declined to comment on these specific allegations, he said the facility has been “incredibly safe.”

“The safety of our patrons is priority number one,” Friedman said. “Our commitment to keeping criminal activity out of our project has resulted in extremely few incidents on and around the casino property since our opening.”

Pascale of the 106th Precinct directed comment — in regards to statistics and allegations — to NYPD officials, who did not respond as of press time.

Explosion kills man in his home


| mchan@queenscourier.com

bomb3 011W

A man described as emotionally disturbed was killed in an at-home explosion in South Ozone Park.

Police found 50-year-old Theodore Ellinghaus unconscious in his 111th Avenue home on Monday, January 23 at around 9:30 a.m.

According to Kenneth Zorn, Community Affairs officer for the 106th Precinct, police found no other explosives and could not identify the exact type of explosive detonated. However, several published reports say the blast came from fireworks, which reportedly tore through the victim’s fingers and ripped through his stomach.

Zorn said officers then evacuated the immediate area — including Ellinghaus’ home and the entire block in each direction — until the NYPD’s Bomb Squad and Arson & Explosion Squad arrived.

Though bomb squad officials determined that Ellinghaus had no terrorist ties, it is still not clear whether or not he was trying to commit suicide or harm others.

There were no other reported injuries.

Jamaica Rotary has respect for officers’ hard work


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Five officers from Patrol Borough Queens South were honored recently by the Jamaica Rotary for their work above and beyond the call of duty and for keeping Queens’ streets safe.

“I really want to thank you guys that work together and make the neighborhood much better and much safer,” said Joe Iaboni, president of the Jamaica Rotary, which honors deserving officers each month. “For the number of police officers you guys have, you’re doing a great, great job. I don’t know how you do it. It is really amazing to see the sweat you put into it.”

Deputy Inspector Charles McEvoy of the 103rd Precinct honored two officers, Rey Alvarez and Craig Michels, whose apprehension of a thief was due to the dedication and work put in prior to the robberies.

Alvarez would regularly go to McEvoy’s office asking for pictures of problematic individuals and make contact with them, the Deputy Inspector said. One of these individuals committed a forced robbery of a cell phone on Thursday, October 20. About four blocks away the suspect committed another robbery. Alvarez recognized the individual, which led to an all-out pursuit by Michels and Alvarez. The officers apprehended both suspects responsible for the robberies and they are still incarcerated and awaiting trial.

From the 102nd Precinct, Deputy Inspector Armando DeLeon commended Officer Lee Petrovits for his apprehension of a sexual assault suspect that fled the scene of the crime. The victim was attacked from behind as she walked home and had rings and her pocketbook stolen. The suspect said he would give them back if she had sex with him. Her screaming alerted neighbors, causing the suspect to flee. Petrovits canvassed the area and proceeded to locate the individual in a backyard. After leaping over a few fences in pursuit of the individual, the suspect was apprehended.

Officer Mike Cozier of the 106th Precinct was feted by Captain Thomas Pascale for taking into custody an armed robbery suspect.
On October 15 at 4:30 a.m. on Liberty Avenue, two individuals, one armed with a gun, entered a restaurant and demanded the property of those inside.

Cozier was flagged down by one of the complainants who pointed out the perp, allowing Cozier to take him into custody.

“It sounds pretty routine, but Mike did a lot of extra work. Normally this is saved for investigative units,” said Pascale. “That area was loaded with ARGUS cameras. This robbery took place right in between two ARGUS cameras.”

Executive Officer Craig Adelman of the 113th Precinct lauded Officer Ryan Schmidt for apprehending a sexual assault suspect with seven prior arrests.

“With the dedicated work of members of the New York City Police Department and the relationship we have with the communities we serve, we were able to apprehend a sexual predator,” said Adelman.

On October 17, a female victim was dragged down from behind by the suspect, who tried to touch her inappropriately. The victim was able to fight him off and he fled the location. Schmidt was alerted by witnesses to the possible location of the suspect. He canvassed the area and gained entrance into the house where the suspect was apprehended and positively identified. He was charged with sexual abuse and forcible touching and is currently being held without bail and awaiting trial.

Assistant Chief of Queens South James Secreto spoke and commended the officers for the terrific job they do.
“You guys are out there where the rubber meets the road, and I have nothing but the most admiration and respect for what you do every day,” he said. “There’s no telling what the city would be like without you guys.”

Auxiliary Lieutenant John Jefferson mourned


| brennison@queenscourier.com

106th Precinct

Ozone Park, South Ozone Park, Richmond Hill and Howard Beach

The 106th Precinct Auxiliary Unit is deeply saddened by the passing of one of its own Lieutenant John Jefferson.

Jefferson was born Christmas Day 1943 and died on Halloween. He joined the 106th Precinct Auxiliary Unit in 1981, after serving 30 years — over 7,100 hours — as a volunteer with the NYPD, and serving and helping the community he loved.

“This Thanksgiving, we, the 106th Precinct Auxiliary Unit, give thanks for having the opportunity to have known such a wonderful and gentle man, who served with pride,” said officials. “Lieutenant John Jefferson, you are so missed, and will continue to be missed, forever in our hearts and memories, lovingly, your brothers and sisters in blue at the 106.”

Joining forces to prevent crime


| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Melissa Chan

The 106th Precinct — and youngsters from the Precinct’s Law Enforcement Explorers program — joined forces with the Lindenwood Alliance to spread awareness about personal safety.

At the “Crime Prevention Fair” on Friday, November 11, organization members were on hand at the Walter Ward Playground in Howard Beach to pass out an assortment of fliers with tips on how to increase safety while walking on the street, driving, parking, using an ATM or elevators, taking the subway or bus and even while at home.

In all cases, the fliers advise residents to eliminate opportunities that may make them targets, increase awareness in places they feel most comfortable, trust instincts regardless of feeling embarrassed and prepare daily schedules with safety in mind.

To draw in parents and to make it fun for kids, the Lindenwood Alliance provided cotton candy, juice, snacks and even face painting.

“I want to help the community to be a little more aware,” said Christina Gold, president of the Lindenwood Alliance, who added that the Alliance was also celebrating its one-year anniversary. “We’re very excited. We’ve come a long way, and we’re looking forward to the future.”