Tag Archives: iphone

109th Precinct Warns About Public Cell Phone Thefts


| mpantelidis@queenscourier.com

Officers of the 109th Precinct have warned residents to be wary with their cell phones – even when walking.

According to Precinct Executive Officer Captain Christopher Manson, cell phone snatchings are currently among the most common forms of theft.

“These iPhones are the biggest thing electronically citywide,” he said. “Cell phones as a whole, but the iPhone in particular. Guys on the subway sometimes wait for the doors to start closing, and then they grab phones and run.”

On January 19, Tevin Simmons, 19, from Jamaica, was arrested at the intersection of Main Street and the Horace Harding Expressway after stealing the iPhone of a male passenger on the Q44 bus. Simmons was charged with grand larceny.

Sixteen-year-old Justin Martinez was arrested on Main Street and 39th Avenue on the morning of January 26 for knocking a 19-year-old Asian female to the ground and grabbing her iPhone. The victim suffered scrapes to her knees, and Martinez was charged with robbery.

Officers also detailed several other recent robberies in the confines of the precinct.

Hector Parada was taken into custody on January 3 for breaking into a closed restaurant and taking money from the cash register. The 23-year-old from Flushing was charged with burglary.

On January 11 at 1:43 p.m., Armon Days, 31, was arrested by police for attempting to break into a house on 157th Street.

John Grisales, 21, from Flushing, was arrested with 28-year-old Christian Bermego in connection with a robbery on Maple Avenue at 3 a.m. on January 17. Grisales and Bermego allegedly knocked a 36-year-old Asian male and 38-year-old Asian female to the ground and stole her purse. Both suspects were charged with robbery.

Despite the recent rash of robberies, the precinct reported mostly improved numbers regarding traffic accidents in 2011.

Car collisions were down three percent in 2011, from 6,740 to 6,547.

There were two pedestrian fatalities – cut in half from four in 2010. Both victims were elderly and were struck by cars when crossing the street. In total, 354 pedestrians were injured in traffic accidents in 2011.

Detective Kevin O’Donnell stressed the importance of remaining at the scene of an accident, regardless of the situation.

“If you have an accident, stay there. Then it is an accident,” he said. “If you leave, it is a crime.”

Apple store coming to Queens?


| brennison@queenscourier.com

A local developer has planted the seeds to land a store that is the “apple” of shoppers’ eyes.

The Heskel Group, located in Forest Hills, has been trying for many years to lure an Apple store into the Queens area.

“I’ve been working on it for a long time,” said Heskel Elias, founder of the Heskel Group. “Nothing is written in stone; nothing concrete.”

Though an Apple spokesperson said the company has not made any announcements regarding any new stores, politicians and residents alike are excited for the possibility.

“I think it would have a great effect on the borough and Forest Hills,” said Councilmember Karen Koslowitz.  “It would have a great economic impact.”

The councilmember said she is an Apple store shopper and is tired of having to travel to Long Island or Manhattan to shop.

“We need an Apple store in Queens,” said Rob Howard, a student at Queens College.  “Whenever you want to get your phone, computer or iPod serviced, you have to travel all the way into the city.”

The Big Apple already has six of the technology giant’s stores, but only one — in Staten Island — outside Manhattan.

Austin Street provides a perfect location, the councilmember said, thanks to its easy accessibility.

“It’s wonderful that stores, like Apple, recognize there is great need for them to come into our neighborhoods,” she said.  “Queens is a great place. I’m very excited about it.”

End of an era in North Korea: Kim Jong Il dies after nearly two decades in power


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

End of an era in North Korea: Kim Jong Il dies after nearly two decades in power

North Korea’s Communist leader Kim Jong Il, whose nearly two-decade reign of power was marked by nuclear threats against his neighbors and a stifling of freedoms for his own people, has died. North Korean television announced Sunday night that the country’s “Supreme Commander” had died in Pyongyang at the age of 69. A weeping North Korean state television announcer said Kim died on a train at 8:30 a.m. Saturday of a heart attack brought on by “physical fatigue” while touring the country’s provinces. Read More: Daily News

 

Thousands Expected At NYPD Officer Peter Figoski’s Funeral Today

Much of Babylon will come to a halt this morning as family, friends and thousands of fellow officers gather for the funeral of NYPD Officer Peter Figoski, a decorated 22-year veteran who was shot and killed Dec. 12 while responding to a robbery in Brooklyn. Suffolk police issued a traffic advisory Sunday, warning motorists that Montauk Highway in Babylon will be closed Monday in both directions. Read More: Newsday

 

Police identify man who fired at pair of officers

Police have identified the man that allegedly fired at two officers earlier this month in Jackson Heights while disguised in a fake beard, trench coat, hat and dark glasses. Officers were alerted of a suspicious male on the corner of 76th Street and Roosevelt Avenue on Friday, December 2.  When the officers approached the suspect – who police say is Antonio Olmeda, 53 – and asked for identification, he pulled a gun and fired two shots, police said. The officers, who were unharmed, pursued the suspect but failed to apprehend him. The fake beard, hat and glasses were recovered during the pursuit. Read More: Queens Courier

 

Long blue line to honor ‘quiet hero’ NYPD Officer Peter Figoski 

A brotherhood of cops 10,000 strong is expected to salute the casket of Officer Peter Figoski Monday morning as it arrives at the Long Island church where the hero cop prayed for a better world. The Rev. Christopher Heller, pastor of St. Joseph’s Church in Babylon, is expected to lead the funeral Mass, offering Figoski’s four bereaved daughters a source of strength in a time of turmoil. “I feel for his poor daughters,” said Charles Spencer, director of Boyd-Spencer Funeral Home in Babylon and a retired NYPD cop. “They’re going to need a lot of help in the future, not just through this funeral. Read More: Daily News

21 arrested in Queens during stolen iPhone/iPad undercover sting

Police arrested 141 individuals – 21 in Queens – purchasing what they believed was stolen electronics during an undercover operation throughout the city. Undercover officers targeted locations that were suspected of receiving stolen merchandise in the past and offered Apple iPhone 4s and iPad 2s that the merchants believed to be stolen for vast discounts, according to police. Read More: Queens Courier

Fundraising Controversy Cuts Liu’s Approval Rating, But Campaign Continues

City Comptroller John Liu was talking about the economy when he said “this has been quite a challenging year,” but he could have been discussing his political future. Liu’s potential campaign for mayor is under investigation by the United States Attorney’s Office, an inquiry that has already resulted in the arrest of one of his fundraisers. The U.S. attorney is reportedly questioning other Liu donors and those who collect donations for him. When asked whether the inquiry was expanding at a holiday party in Flushing on Friday, Liu said, “You’re asking me if it’s true. How am I supposed to know if it’s true? It’s a Times story. Let’s be fair.” Read More: NY1

Delta Airlines To Add Flights Out Of LaGuardia

Delta Airlines is boosting its flights out of LaGuardia. The airline is adding routes that target business travelers as well as Delta’s competitors, American Airlines and United. “For the first time really in the history of aviation at LaGuardia Airport, we’re going to build a hub. That means we’re going to be connecting passengers and growing the number of seats and destinations in a very significant way,” said Richard Anderson, CEO of Delta Airlines. In the largest expansion at LaGuardia in 40 years, the airline is adding flights to Miami, Dallas, Houston, Denver and Charlotte. Read More: NY1

Take lid off land deal: judge

A Manhattan judge has backed state investigators who are trying to get to the bottom of a controversial deal to sell state land to an Indian community group in Queens. The organization that got the sweetheart deal, the Indian Cultural and Community Center, has stopped cooperating with detectives dispatched by state Inspector General Ellen Biben, court records show. But Supreme Court Justice Manuel Mendez said in a ruling last week that there is “a legitimate and reasonable basis for [the IG’s] inquiry,” and he ordered the Indian Cultural and Community Center to turn over the records requested. Read More: New York Post

City could close two Rockaway elementary schools for poor performance

The city is moving to close a struggling Far Rockaway elementary school, despite strong opposition from parents, after it received an “F” on its report card. The Department of Education recommended earlier this month that Public School 215 be phased out starting in the fall of 2012 and replaced with another school in the same building. The influential Panel for Educational Policy is to vote on the proposal on Feb. 9 Read More: Daily News

 

Fired Queens prosecutor beats her old boss with acquittal for her client on trial for murder

An ex-Queens prosecutor sacked after she blew the whistle on a TB scare scored an acquittal in a murder case against her old bosses late Tuesday. Michael McLennon was found not guilty in the fatal 2007 shooting of a former tenant after lawyer Tamara Harris claimed her client was fending off a machete attack when he clicked off three rounds from a .9-mm pistol. McLennon, 41, was convicted of possessing a weapon and tampering with evidence. He faces a minimum sentence of three and a half years in prison. Read More: Daily News

Long Island City to receive more residential housing and businesses development

Long Island City is on the rise — one tower at a time — thanks to a host of new developments, defying the bleak real estate market. About 1,250 condos and rental apartments are slated to hit the market in the western Queens community next year, said Eric Benaim, owner of the local real estate firm Modern Spaces. And that’s just the beginning of what’s planned over the next few years for the once predominantly industrial area. Read More: Daily News

 

21 arrested in Queens during stolen iPhone/iPad undercover sting


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Police arrested 141 individuals – 21 in Queens – purchasing what they believed was stolen electronics during an undercover operation throughout the city.

Undercover officers targeted locations that were suspected of receiving stolen merchandise in the past and offered Apple iPhone 4s and iPad 2s that the merchants believed to be stolen for vast discounts, according to police.

“This was a two-prong approach to apprehend both thieves and receivers of stolen property,” Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said. “Suspects at both ends of the equation are learning the hard way that ‘victims’ and ‘sellers’ may in fact be undercover police officers.”

Convenience stores, newsstands, delis, barber shops and other commercial establishments were targeted in the sting.

In Queens arrests were made at the following locations: 

101ST PRECINCT (2 arrests)

  •  A Line Deli Inc (21-15 Mott Avenue) – 1 arrest
  •  Genesis Deli (25-11 Far Rockaway Blvd) – 1 arrest

106TH PRECINCT (2 arrests)

  •  TMJ Grocery (104-05 Liberty Avenue) – 1 arrest
  •  Liberty Avenue Deli (105-31 Liberty Avenue) – 1 arrest

108TH PRECINCT (3 arrests)

  •  Juan Grocery (64-21 Broadway) – 1 arrest
  •  El Rey Del Taco (49-06 43 Avenue) – 1 arrest
  •  Scorpion Bar (69-08 Roosevelt Avenue) – 1 arrest

109TH PRECINCT (2 arrests)

  •  Kingnet Technology Inc. (37-02 Main Street) – 1 arrest
  •  Main Street Computer Shop (41-46 Main Street) – 1 arrest

110TH PRECINCT (7 arrests)

  •  40-36 75 Street – 1 arrest
  •  81-14 Roosevelt Avenue – 3 arrests
  •  97-09 Roosevelt Avenue – 1 arrest
  •  84-26 Roosevelt Avenue – 1 arrest
  •  80-06 Roosevelt Avenue – 1 arrest

114TH PRECINCT (1 arrest, 0 prior incidents)

  •  Beauty & Nail Salon (29-25 23 Avenue) – 1 arrest

115TH PRECINCT (4 arrests

  •  Dancar (93-04B 37 Avenue) – 1 arrest
  •  ABC Wireless NY Inc (37-65A 74 Street) – 1 arrest
  •  Envios a Equador (102-05 Roosevelt Avenue) – 1 arrest
  •  Livery Cab (f/o 103-17 Roosevelt Avenue) – 1 arrest

Courier Police Blotter


| tcimino@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Nargas Karimi

111th Precinct

Bayside, Douglaston, Little Neck, Auburndale, Hollis Hills and Fresh Meadows

Last Precinct Council meeting of 2011

 The 111th Precinct held its last Council Meeting of the year, updating residents on crime stats and honoring December’s “Cop of the Month.”

“This year we’re down nine percent in crime. We’re down in every category, except for murder. We had two murders for the year,” said Commanding Officer Ronald D. Leyson.

Grand larceny was up 2.3 percent for a total of eight crimes for the year, noted Leyson.

“Thirty-two percent, not a small number, during the 28-day period for grand larcenies is due to property left in people’s vehicles and their property getting stolen. It’s frustrating because it’s a preventable crime,” said Leyson.

The 111th Precinct is also down in robberies. There were three robberies in the course of the 28-day period, as opposed to 10 last year, noted the Captain.

“We were struggling throughout most of the year with robberies and a lot had to with non-traditional robberies, where they came from other areas off the highway and did commercial robberies,” said Leyson.

Also during the meeting, Leyson and Precinct Council President Jack Fried honored Officer Jimmy Tropiano as “Cop of the Month” for completing numerous reports and analyzing complaints in the Crime Analysis Unit.

“He’s our computer guy. He has created databases that have helped with the day-to-day analysis of crimes,” said Leyson.

District Attorney Richard A. Brown also made an appearance and wished everyone a very happy holiday season.

                                                                                                        - BY NARGAS KARIMI

 

108th Precinct

Long Island City, Sunnyside and Woodside

See shooter

Police are on the lookout for a suspect involved in a Woodside shooting over the weekend.

Eladio Espejo, 26, became involved in an argument with the victim inside 47-16 Greenpoint Avenue at approximately 5:40 a.m. on Saturday, December 10, according to police. After the dispute, the suspect left. When the victim, a 32-year-old Hispanic man, left the establishment, Espejo shot him in the thigh and arm, police said. The victim was taken to Elmhurst Hospital where he was treated and released.

The suspect is described as 5’ 9″ tall and weighs between 160 and 200 pounds.

Anyone with information in regards to this shooting is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers hotline at 800-577-TIPS.

 

Police are on the lookout for Eladio Espejo, 26, in connection with a shooting.

 

Attempted robber sought

The NYPD is asking for the public’s assistance in locating and identifying the suspect wanted in connection with an attempted robbery.

On Monday, November 21, the victim, a 37-year-old woman, was approached from behind as she entered her apartment building in the vicinity of 65th Place and Woodside Avenue. She was thrown to the floor by the suspect, who then unsuccessfully tried to pull the victim’s purse off her shoulder before fleeing.

The suspect is described as a male, black or Hispanic, light complexion, 5’2″ to 5’3″, in his late teens to early 20’s, with black, shoulder-length hair.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS.

 

A skecth of the man police say tried to rob a woman of her purse.

 

Man snatched iPhone

Police are looking for a man who allegedly stole a woman’s iPhone as she rode the “E” train.

Cops say the incident happened on Tuesday, November 22 as the Queens-bound train was approaching the Queens Plaza subway station. There were no injuries sustained to the victim as a result of this incident.

The suspect is described as male, black, 17 to 20 years old.

If you have information in regards to this incident, call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS.

 

This man stole a woman’s iPhone as she rode the subway.

 

 

109th Precinct

Downtown Flushing, East Flushing, Queensboro Hill, College Point, Malba, Whitestone, Beechhurst and Bay Terrace

Help find missing woman

Police are looking for a woman who went missing on Wednesday, December 7.

Judy Nam, 28, of Roosevelt Avenue in Flushing, was last seen leaving her residence wearing blue jeans, a T-shirt and sneakers. She is 5’8″ tall and weighs 135 pounds.

Anyone with information as to her whereabouts is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS.

 

Judy Nam, 28, of Roosevelt Avenue in Flushing is missing.

 

 

114th Precinct

Astoria, Long Island City, Woodside, and Jackson Heights

Cops seek robbers

The NYPD is asking for the public’s help in locating and identifying the three suspects wanted in connection with two robberies.

On Thursday, December 1, the suspects approached the victim, a 33-year-old woman, at 27th Street and Ditmars Boulevard, displayed a black semi-automatic handgun and demanded cash and her cell phone. There were no injuries and the suspects fled southbound on 27th Street.

That same day, the suspects approached a second victim, a 25-year-old man, at 24th Street and Ditmars Boulevard, again displayed a handgun and demanded his cash and cell phone. There were no injuries and the suspects fled southbound on 24th Street.

If you have any information in regards to these incidents, call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS.

 

115th Precinct

East Elmhurst, North Corona and Jackson Heights

Man shot at cops, fled

A man who was acting suspiciously and shot at cops is being sought.

It was on Friday, December 2 when two uniformed officers were patrolling on foot in the vicinity of 76th Street and Roosevelt Avenue. They were alerted by a passerby of a male acting suspiciously at the corner of 37th Road and 76th Street. The officers walked to the location and observed the male wearing a black trench coat with a fake beard, a hat and dark glasses. When the officers approached the individual, they asked him for identification, at which time the man removed his hands from his pockets, pulled out a black revolver and fired twice at the officers before fleeing southbound on 77th Street.

The officers pursued the male but were unable to apprehend him. The fake beard, hat and glasses were recovered during the foot pursuit. No injuries were sustained by either of the officers.

The suspect is described as a man in his 30s, approximately 5’9″ tall with a thin build.

If you recognize him, police say to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS.

 

This photo, from video surveillance, shows the man police say shot at two cops.

Queens’ Morning Roundup – 10/31/2011: Home sweet home for Ilan Grapel


| jlane@queenscourier.com

The Round Up

Home sweet home for Ilan Grael

Ilan Grapel, the Queens law student freed after five months in an Egyptian prison, made an emotional return to US soil Saturday. Grapel , a law student at Emory University, was in Egypt to volunteer with a legal- aid group. In June, he arrested and accused of spying for Israel after posting photos of himself in Israeli military garb on his Facebook page. Read More: New York Post

 

Ticket-Fix Cases May Spread

The Queens District Attorney on Sunday said he expected to hear this week from his Bronx counterpart if there are any ticket-fixing cases in his borough to prosecute. Richard A. Brown said his office has been in contact with Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson and the NYPD’s Internal Affairs Bureau for “months,” regarding an investigation that resulted in the arrests of 16 officers on Friday, 11 on charges related to the common practice of making traffic tickets and other summonses disappear for family, friends and others. Read More: Wall Street Journal

Cleanup Continues In Wake Of Pre-Halloween Snowstorm

Record-breaking snowfall left 15,000 New Yorkers without power and downed trees strewn across the five boroughs Sunday, prompting major cleanup efforts from city workers and residents alike. City parks reopened Sunday afternoon after closing during the storm, but New Yorkers are urged to use caution because branches may still fall due to the extra weight from snow. Read More:  NY1

 

iPhone Slaying

A Queens teen was stabbed to death Saturday by a gang of thugs who wanted to steal his iPhone, police said. A group of four to six teens approached Patrick Dixon, 17, and demanded that he hand over his iPhone at around 11 a.m. on 142nd Street near Foch Boulevard in Jamaica, cops said. Dixon refused and fought back, and one of the teens slashed him in the neck. Read More: New York Post

 

Two off-duty NYPD officers in separate  DWI arrests 

Officer Ariel Rosa, 26, was busted on a DWI after he crashed into a parked car about 4:30 a.m. on Moffat St. between Knickerbocker and Wilson Aves. in Bushwick. He was treated for minor injuries at a local hospital determined to be drunk after a blood test at a local hospital where he was treated for a minor injury, police said. Another cop, Michael Botros, 29, was found asleep at 7:40 a.m. Friday inside his white Nissan with the keys still in the ignition in South Ozone Park, Queens. Police said he refused to take a Breathalyzer test and was arrested. Read More: Daily News

 

Ex-Councilman Allan Jennings sues Queens Chronicle, saying alleged ‘Asian-women’ mistruth cost him votes

Former city Councilman Allan Jennings is suing a weekly newspaper in Queens for defamation, saying it helped turn voters against him during last year’s Council race. Jennings said the Queens Chronicle erred in stating he had once put an advertisement in a Chinese-language newspaper “declaring his love for all Asian women.” He said the statement was made in an Oct. 28, 2010, article about his bid for his former 28th District seat. Ruben Wills won that special election. Read More: Daily News

 

Councilman lashes out with curse-filled rant at Queens auto business

A hot-headed City Councilman let loose a curse-filled tirade at a local car dealer last week that left stunned employees demanding an apology. Rothman received the brunt of two recent rants from Councilman Daniel Halloran, who says he’s fed up with noise from the repair shop that disturbs nearby residents. A video of Halloran’s visit to the shop last week shows the Queens Republican angrily threatening the shop with recriminations if it doesn’t keep its doors closed to control the noise. Read More: Daily News

 

Resorts World Opens

South Ozone Park’s Aqueduct Racino, reborn as Resorts World Casino New York City, officially opened its doors to an eager throng of thousands of gamers on Friday, October 28. Casino representatives and elected officials were on hand at the former Aqueduct Racino for the ribbon cutting, and to welcome those who came to play on opening day – a line which wrapped around the building, leaving visitors with at least a two hour wait. Read More: Queens Courier

Queens’ Morning Roundup – 10/10/2011 – Queens teachers disciplined


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Untitled-1

Queens’ Morning Roundup – 10/10/2011

 

What did you learn in school today?

Over 20 Department of Education employees have been disciplined over the course of the past 2 years due to inappropriate conduct. Angel Vazquez, a teacher at P.S. 117 in Queens was fired after complaints that he waved a box cutter at students, and berated them. Richard Van Grover, a teacher at Junior High School 157 in Queens also acted indecent with students. Van Grover sexually harassed 10 students by giving them intimate details of his life as a “Casanova”. Van Grover was fined and relocated to another school. No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty talk. Read more: Daily News

 

More details emerge on Queens’ identity theft ring

More light has been shed on the Queens based identity theft ring that was busted last week. Details of how the ring was operated were released by the prosecutors over the weekend. An estimated 13 million dollars’ worth of losses comes as a result of the crooks misdeeds. Read more about the entire operation at: Daily News

 

YaGotTheWrongGuy

Police apprehended a suspect in the iPhone theft that was perpetrated last week. The highly publicized theft revolved around the iPhone app iGotYa which took a picture of the thief and emailed it to the victim. Brian Chattoo, 23, from Ozone Park was arrested Saturday when he ran from police. Chattoo has a rap sheet with 14 prior offenses ranging from grand larceny to auto theft, but claims he is not the man in the photo. Read more at: Daily News

 

Court date approaches for Queens drunk driver

On July 24th after a night of boozing Tanisha Gomez, 26, of Queens drove the wrong way on I-95 and crashed into an oncoming car. This crash resulted in the death of 29 year old Reginald Lee. Ms. Gomez’s court date is set for October 18th, where she is charged with aggravated vehicular homicide, manslaughter, drunken driving, and vehicular assault. Read more at: Wall Street Journal

 

Apple co-founder Steve Jobs dead at 56


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Steve Jobs, the co-founder of Apple who helped revolutionize the digital age, died Wednesday. He was 56.

“Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being,” the company said in a brief statement. “Those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and an inspiring mentor. Steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.”

Diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2004, Jobs battled the disease as Apple’s chief executive before stepping down this past August.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg remembered the innovator saying, “America lost a genius who will be remembered with Edison and Einstein, and whose ideas will shape the world for generations to come.”

Bloomberg added that the city’s government and everyone from street construction inspectors to NYPD detectives “harnessed Apple’s products to do their jobs more efficiently and intuitively.”

Jobs co-founded Apple with Steve Wozniak in 1976 before being ousted by the company nine years later. Following his firing, Jobs pursued other avenues, which included purchasing Pixar, before returning to Apple in 1997 and ushering in a 15-year run where the company revolutionized personal computers, music and cell phones.

In September, Forbes Magazine estimated Jobs’ wealth at $7 billion.

Jobs is survived by his wife and four children.