Tag Archives: Fresh Meadows

Fresh Meadows two-story mall to open soon


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

Work on a two-story mall in Fresh Meadows on 164th Street is weeks away from completion, according to the owner J&H Management Corp.

About four years ago, former Councilman James Gennaro assisted in changing the zoning of the lot to commercial to clear the way for the shopping center. 

J&H, which filed to demolish the auto repair shop on the lot in 2012, started construction last year and was expecting the shopping center to be completed in the spring. The more than 13,000 square-foot retail mall will have 13 tenants and 38 parking spots. 

“It’s about bringing retail in to an area which it really needs it, and bringing parking to Queens,” said Joel Fischer, president of J&H Management Corp.  

The new mall will share the block with a pizzeria near the 69th Avenue, and is close to a Key Food supermarket on the next block.

Some shops are already confirmed as tenants, but the owner wants to hold off on announcing them at this time.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES 

Funds being raised for burial services for 8-year-old boy killed in Fresh Meadows


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Jerry Kenmoe’s family


The community is coming together to collect donations to help pay for burial services for an 8-year-old boy who was killed in Fresh Meadows last month.

Jerry Kenmoe was found dead in his home on June 29 after his father, who has been charged with his murder, strangled him, according to officials.

Funds are being raised to help his mother pay for funeral services and to have her son’s remains brought back to Douala, Cameroon, her native country, for burial, according to Kathryn Como, whose son went to school with Jerry at P.S. 107, where he was a fourth-grader.

Donations will be collected on Saturday in front of the school, located at 167-02 45 Ave. in Flushing between, 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Funds are also being accepted through the site crowdrise.com, and can be made here.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES 

 

 

Fresh Meadows tennis pro competing for US Open spot


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy USTA Middle States


A Fresh Meadows tennis player is closing in on a spot in the US Open later this year, but she’ll have to fight her way in.

Jennifer Elie, 27, won the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Middle States sectional national playoffs tournament on June 24, which slots her in as a wild card in the US Open qualifying tournament held a week prior to the national Grand Slam in August. Should Elie win that draw, she’ll advance to the US Open.

Elie, who played for Francis Lewis High School, has been a consistent player on the USTA Pro Circuit and in International Tennis Federation (ITF) events. She won two ITF singles titles in 2012 in Caracas, Venezuela, and has also won four USTA Pro Circuit and ITF-level doubles events.

Elie, who peaked at No. 286 in the world in April 2013, has a win over current world No. 18 Sloane Stephens at a $50,000 USTA Pro Circuit event in Kentucky in 2011.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

 

 

Fresh Meadows father charged with murder after 8-year-old son found dead in home


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Graphic Image


Updated 2:25 p.m.

A Fresh Meadows 8-year-old was found dead in his home Sunday night after his father apparently strangled the boy then attempted suicide, according to officials.

Officers arrived at the Underhill Avenue apartment around 10:10 p.m. after receiving a 9-1-1 call from the father, 41-year Boujeke Kenmoe, requesting an ambulance for himself and his son, Jerry Kenmoe, prosecutors said.

Inside, they discovered the father on the floor with self-inflicted cuts to his wrist and his son unconscious in a bed with marks on his neck, officials said.

The child was pronounced dead at the scene and Kenmoe was taken to Queens Hospital Center in stable condition, police said.

Kenmoe, who is still in the hospital, is currently awaiting arraignment in Queens Criminal Court on a second-degree murder charge, according to the district attorney’s office. If convicted, he faces up to 25 years to life in prison.

The medical examiner will determine the cause of death, but a preliminary report found that the boy had petechial hemorrhaging in his eyes, which is consistent with being strangled, officials said.

Kenmoe also allegedly confessed to authorities that he had choked his son before trying to kill himself.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

John Messer stops bid for state Senate


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy John Messer


Oakland Gardens lawyer John Messer is dropping his third bid to unseat 14-year veteran state Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky in District 16, which includes Flushing, Bayside, Forest Hills and Fresh Meadows, among other areas.

“I look forward to continuing to work together to make our community a better place to work and live. However, for personal and business reasons, I will not be a candidate in this election season,” said Messer, who announced his decision through a press release on June 9.

Messer, who holds a master’s degree in government and politics from St. John’s University, ran an unsuccessful race against Stavisky in the 2012 Democratic Primary, losing the race to the incumbent after receiving 41.9 percent of the vote. The Queens Courier reported in 2012 that Messer spent $351,000 of his own money in the campaign.

Messer hoped two years ago that the redrawn District 16, which included a 53 percent Asian population, would give him an advantage, since his wife is Chinese-American, and because the primary was just a head-to-head battle between the candidates.

Messer’s first attempt in 2010 was a three-way primary election with Isaac Sasson, a retired professor and cancer researcher.

“We’re not ruling out a run in the future,” Messer said. “We have so much support in the community now, everyone knows we are here to stay.”

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

State Sen. Avella allocates $200K to renovate Fresh Meadows school auditorium


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre


State Sen. Tony Avella will allocate $200,000 for repairs and electrical upgrades to the auditorium of P.S. 26 in Fresh Meadows. 

P.S. 26 submitted a request for the money to Avella’s office earlier this year for the necessary upgrades since the school stays open year-round and shares the space with P.S. 224 during the summer months.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES 

Seven indicted in Bayside, Flushing fraud ring operations


| editorial@queenscourier.com


Seven members of two organized fraud rings based in Flushing and Bayside were indicted by a grand jury Thursday following a two-year investigation leading to the dismantlement of the operations, officials said.

In one scheme, personal information, including social security cards, passports and drivers licenses, were stolen from legitimate car buyers and used to purchase seven luxury automobiles, according to District Attorney Richard Brown. The information was taken from customers, while one of the alleged ring members, Joung Duck Woo, worked as an automobile broker. Woo, who knew four of the victims through his church, is accused of using the information to also open credit cards and other accounts.

The indicted members in the second ring are accused of participating in a credit card “bust out” scam, Brown said. They allegedly used social security numbers  beginning with the prefix “586” issued by the government in U.S. territories, such as America Samoa and Guam, to set up fake credit card accounts. False identities were used to open bank and department store credit accounts online and in person to make purchases and cash withdrawals. They are also accused of busting out, or draining the available line of credit on each card.

Joung Duck Woo, 45, of Fresh Meadows, Ki Hun Kim, 45, of Flushing, Sang Hun Moon 59, of Flushing, and Ki Bin Lim, 52, of Fresh Meadows, are variously charged with grand larceny, falsifying business records, identity theft, criminal possession of stolen property, forgery and scheme to defraud in connection to the first scheme, according to one indictment.  If convicted, each face up to 15 years in prison.

Of those indicted, Ki Bin Lim is still being sought, while the other three are in custody, officials said.

In a second indictment, Jinuk Chong, 24, of Fresh Meadows, Kyeong Joon Kim, 53, of Flushing, and Dong Soo Kim, 60, of Flushing, are variously charged with grand larceny, falsifying business records, forgery and scheme to defraud in connection to the “bust out.” If convicted, they each face up to seven years in prison.

Anyone who may have been a victim of these schemes should contact the district attorney’s Economics Crimes Bureau at 718-286-6673.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Monday: Sunny to partly cloudy. High 72. Winds NW at 10 to 20 mph. Monday night: Partly cloudy skies. Low 53. Winds NW at 10 to 15 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Let’s “CUT” Cancer Out

Style Glam Salon in Fresh Meadows is hosting its first annual Benefit, Let’s “CUT” Cancer Out! We are raising money for St. Jude’s Cancer Research Hospital for Children and donating hair to “Locks of Love”, and organization that provides hair for disadvantaged children. There will be a special appearance by Tracy DiMarco Epstein from “Jerseylicious.” Face painting will be available, raffles, complimentary champagne, refreshments will be served. Proceeds will go to St, Jude’s Hospital. All are welcomed. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Police ask for help in finding diabetic teen

The NYPD is asking for the public’s help in finding a Queens teenager with Type 1 diabetes who has been missing since Thursday. Read more: CBS New York

De Blasio touts housing initiative for NYC residents with HIV, AIDS

The fight against AIDS and HIV is now in its fourth decade, but many continue to work to ensure the cause doesn’t lose its urgency “because we know so many people still need our help,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said Sunday, speaking to about 300 people gathered in Central Park for the GHMC AIDS Walk. Read more: am New York

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand urges Congress to create insurance for paid maternity leave

Congress should pass legislation to create a paid maternity leave insurance program for new parents, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand said Sunday. Read more: New York Daily News

De Blasio expected to speak about improving web access

Mayor Bill de Blasio will have a tough act to follow when he talks tech on Monday. Read more: New York Post

“Selfie” among 149 words, phrases added to Merriam-Webster dictionary as food, digital life reign supreme

Prosecutor Steve Parks of Delta County, Michigan, says he’s pushed for more than a decade to have Merriam-Webster recognize the word Yooper, a longtime resident of the Lake Superior region. Read more: CBS News

 

 

 

Fresh Meadows residents, pols worry about sinking street


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre


Residents and politicians are complaining about a cracked and sinking street in Fresh Meadows and are calling for the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to repair it.

The middle of 179th Street between Union Turnpike and 75th Avenue has sunk a few inches after underground support for the roadway collapsed, which residents have been complaining about since last May.

Local politicians and civic leaders said the issue is getting worse and it creates a problem for pedestrians and drivers. Councilman Rory Lancman and Assemblywoman Nily Rozic will hold a press conference Monday to rally the DEP to fix it.

“DEP needs to figure out what’s going on in a timely matter, and homeowners shouldn’t be penalized,” Rozic said. “The DEP needs to take responsibility.”

Cars driving on the street avoid the noticeable dip in the road and vehicles are parked at a slanted angle, the Courier observed during a recent trip to the site.

The city agency has examined the collapse and found that its sewer line underneath the road is not the problem, but it may be a leak from a resident’s private sewer line that caused the issue, Community Board 8 District Manager Marie Adam-Ovide said at a recent meeting. The DEP is currently trying to find the source of the problem.

“DEP has not identified any issues with the city’s water or sewer infrastructure and we have also investigated a number of private water and sewer service lines,” a spokesperson for the agency said. “There are also a number of private lines we have not been able to gain access to. Once we identify the source of the cave-in we will ensure repairs are made and the street is repaired.”

The DEP has made quick fixes to the sinking street in the past, but residents are upset that they have had to deal with the problem for so long. During the press conference elected officials are expected to urge the DEP to find a long-term solution.

“We want things to happen sooner [rather] than later, and it took a long time for it to [get] to this point,” Adam-Ovide said.

 

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES 

 

Fresh Meadows middle school will walk to stop bullying


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

Follow me @liamlaguerre

 
One Queens middle school is taking a stand against bullying with a walk-a-thon.

J.H.S. 216 George J. Ryan in Fresh Meadows is hosting its “Respect For All” walk-a-thon on Tuesday, May 13, on the school’s track, to celebrate diversity and discourage bullying.

“We are trying to get kids to stop name-calling, and do whatever we can to get this building the way it should be,” said Hal Fuchs, an academic coordinator in the school. “And something like this we feel could do that. It’s about respect. We want kids to have respect for each other.”

Three students from each homeroom, approximately 150 kids, will represent the school’s 1,400 students in the event. From 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. the participating students will lap the track four times, which is the equivalent of one mile, Fuchs said.

The New York Mets have donated tickets to the upcoming game against the Los Angeles Dodgers on May 21 for kids who take part in the walk-a-thon.

The school is also selling 800 “Respect For All” bracelets for $1 each. The proceeds from the event will be donated to an anti-bullying charity to be named.

Photo courtesy J.H.S. 216 

 

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Crash victim’s parents take safety oath with hundreds of students


| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Melissa Chan

Studying for the year’s biggest standardized tests can wait, District 26 Superintendent Anita Saunders said.

Scholars at P.S. 173 have a more important task at hand — memorizing the 120-word oath they took Friday to put safety first as passengers and pedestrians.

“This pledge you’re taking is very, very important,” Saunders said to a packed auditorium of wide-eyed youths. “It’s even more important than your ELA and math test.”

Almost all 940 students at the Fresh Meadows school raised their right hand and promised, in unison, to buckle up, be alert and “value the preservation of life above all else” when riding in cars or crossing the street.

The pledge was taken in honor of 3-year-old Allison Liao, who was tragically killed by an SUV in Flushing last October, while crossing Main Street at Cherry Avenue.

“We’re here today because something bad happened to our family,” Allison’s father, Hsi-Pei, said to the students. “She did nothing wrong, and she was holding an adult’s hand.”

The Liaos’ tragedy has aided a local push to stop short-tempered parents from double parking, blocking the school bus stop and letting students run across the street outside of P.S. 173, where Allison’s 5-year-old brother Preston attends.

Nearly 700 parents have signed a driver’s version of the pledge so far, PTA President Italia Augienello said.

Educators hope to hold each to their word.

“Just signing [the pledge] once is not enough,” Saunders said. “We don’t want to have another terrible tragedy.”

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES 

 

Hundreds to sign safety pledge in honor of Flushing 3-year-old killed by SUV


| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Melissa Chan

The family of the 3-year-old girl tragically killed by an SUV in Flushing will watch hundreds stand to take a pledge against reckless driving Friday to honor the toddler.

“This is actually pretty amazing,” said Hsi-Pei Liao, whose daughter, Allison, was fatally struck while crossing Main St. at Cherry Ave. last October. “It’s very personal.”

Nearly 2,000 people are expected to take a safety oath at P.S. 173, promising to “value the preservation of life above all else” while behind the wheel.

It couldn’t come at a better time.

The Fresh Meadows elementary school, which Allison’s 5-year-old brother Preston attends, has been the site of daily, dangerous drop-offs during the morning rush, civic leaders said.

Police even stepped in last month to stop short-tempered drivers from double parking, blocking the school bus stop and letting students run across the street, The Queens Courier reported.

“Our traffic conditions outside of our school are so severe,” said PTA President Italia Augienello. “We don’t need another tragedy. I’m afraid because, next time, it could be my kid.”

The driver who hit Allison remained at the scene and was not charged with a crime, police said. He was issued two summonses for failing to exercise due care and failing to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk.

The irreversible tragedy has led Hsi-Pei and his wife, Amy, who works as a social worker, to turn their pain into progress.

“We can’t save her,” said Hsi-Pei, a 36-year-old software technician. “There’s a feeling of helplessness and we can’t do that anymore. We can’t do that to ourselves anymore.”

The couple, in February, helped create Families for Safe Streets, a New York City-based group fighting for an end to traffic deaths.

They also meet monthly with local precincts and the PTA, drive to Albany to plead with elected officials and rally with a local advocacy group, Make Queens Safer.

“Something needs to be changed,” Hsi-Pei said. “Even if it constantly brings up the topic of why I lost my daughter, I feel like we’re proactively doing something.”

The family’s resilience has inspired hundreds on a local and citywide level. All 940 students in the school are expected to take the pledge to be careful on the streets and at least 1,000 parents, staff and residents plan to do the same.

“It’s amazing — the strength they have after what they’ve been through,” Augienello said. “They’re humble and quiet, yet they’re strong and their voices are heard.”

All are welcome to join the assembly March 21 at 1:10 p.m., inside the school’s auditorium at 174-10 67th Ave.

“They’re healing by helping other people understand what their actions can cause,” said Parent Coordinator Jean Mendler, “and that’s wonderful.”

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Fresh Meadows noise complaint leads to heroin bust


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photos Courtesy of NYPD

A noise complaint at a Fresh Meadows home led police officers to make a major heroin bust Friday night.

Uniformed officers of the 107th Precinct responded to a 3-1-1 noise complaint at 11:05 p.m. on the third floor at 67-11 161st St., according to the NYPD. Upon arriving, the officer heard a loud radio from one apartment and after they knocked the suspect, Frank Giardina, answered the door holding a marijuana pipe.

In order to write Giardina a summons, the officers asked him for his identification after which Giardina invited the police inside his apartment in order to get his ID, according to police. Once inside the apartment the officers saw about five pounds of alleged heroin on the kitchen table. Giardina was then placed under arrest.

A search warrant was granted and after further search, 1,948 glassines of heroin were found together with packing materials and equipment.

Giardina faces charges including criminal possession of a controlled substance of an amount greater than eight ounces, criminal possession of a controlled substance of methamphetamine, intent to sell a criminal possession of a controlled substance and criminal possession of marijuana.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Queens precinct ramps up speeding enforcement to meet ‘Vision Zero’


| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

Lead-footed drivers in the 111th Precinct will have to ease up on the gas soon or get a ticket.

The precinct plans to ramp up speeding enforcement and make sure motorists yield to pedestrians, Deputy Inspector Jason Huerta said.

The push is part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s “Vision Zero” initiative, which aims to reduce traffic fatalities to zero within the next 10 years. De Blasio’s plan also calls for a reduction in the citywide speed limit from 30 to 25 mph and stiffer penalties on reckless taxi and livery drivers.

Speeding and failing to yield make up 70 percent of pedestrian fatalities in the city, NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton said.

Officers will be closely eyeing major area intersections like Northern and Bell Blvds. and Springfield Blvd. and Horace Harding Expwy., Huerta said.

The 111th Precinct  covers Bayside, Douglaston, Little Neck, Auburndale, Hollis Hills and Fresh Meadows. It is one of many citywide precincts to beef up traffic enforcement in order to reach the mayor’s goals.

There have been no pedestrian deaths within the precinct this year, Huerta said.

However, a 2-year-old boy was hit by a car Monday afternoon in Auburndale after he darted onto 196th St. near Northern Blvd., police said, though he is expected to recover.

“They think the child is going to pull through,” Huerta said. “Obviously, it’s a tragedy.”

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES