Tag Archives: joseph azzurro

Poor box pilferer pinched


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Alexa Altman

Thou shalt not steal.

One man’s sinful behavior landed him in some hot water when a parish priest caught him trying to pilfer the poor box.

On Christmas Eve, 2011, Reverend Father Francis Colamaria, overseer of Holy Child Jesus Roman Catholic Church in Richmond Hill, heard loud scraping noises coming from inside the house of worship. Upon investigation, Colamaria discovered Joseph Azzurro standing adjacent to a collection box. When the intruder saw Colamaria, he fell to his knees, saying “Bless me Father for I have sinned.”

Colamaria observed Azzurro carrying a backpack, inside of which he saw a bent wire hanger. Prior to the incident, several bent wire hangers had been retrieved throughout the church.

According to the district attorney, Colamaria recognized the individual and had frequently seen him in close proximity to the poor boxes, often during weekends and religious holidays, when donation amounts generally spike.

Azzurro was arrested on February 23. He has since been released without bail.

The charges against Azzurro include possession of burglar’s tools, criminal mischief in the fourth degree and attempted petit larceny.

According to the DA, Colamaria said that he noticed weekly shortages among the church’s eight donation boxes averaging $100 between the months of May and December, 2011. Colamaria also claimed that several of the boxes appeared to have been tampered with, including one with a broken lock.

In 2000, Azzurro violated three times an order of protection that had been set against him by Nativity Roman Catholic Church after he attempted to steal money from a collection box there. These actions earned Azzurro a prison sentence of one-and-a-half to three years. Azzurro was pinched yet again in 2002 for burglary at St. Thomas the Apostle Roman Catholic Church and served more prison time.

Flushing Teacher Removed From Classroom Following Alleged Assault On Student


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Flushing Teacher Removed From Classroom Following Alleged Assault On Student

A Queens teacher is under arrest and accused of abusing a six-year-old girl. Grace Peterson-Hagendorf, 59, is charged with assault following an incident at P.S. 22 in Flushing. According to sources, she is accused of twisting the student’s neck causing pain and swelling. The Department of Education says Hagendorf is a retired teacher who works as a substitute. She has been removed from the classroom pending the outcome of the case. Read More: NY1

 

Simmons’ $5M salary, ‘antics’ led to WNBC ditching her: sources

There were 5 million reasons to oust Sue Simmons — and they were all in her paycheck. WNBC/Channel 4 refused to renew the nightly news anchor’s contract because she makes a whopping $5 million annual salary — which her bosses feel is absurdly overinflated — and she’s lost interest in her job, top network sources told The Post. “It is a lot of money, and many people have been under the impression that Sue had been phoning it in for a while,” a station source revealed. Read More: New York Post

 

‘Church creeper’ Joseph Azzurro has 40 busts to name

Queens’ Holy Child Jesus Church is open to everyone — except Joseph Azzurro, who seems to think 10 Commandments is one too many. The 56-year-old Bronx ex-con is what cops call a “church creeper” — he’s been arrested 40 times and done three prison stretches in his unholy career for swiping cash from the poor box in Catholic churches. Read More: Daily News

 

Cashman ‘blackmailer’ not a ‘Fatal Attraction’-like stalker: lawyer

The busty Brit who dragged Yankee general manager Brian Cashman into a sex-and-shakedown scandal isn’t the “Fatal Attraction”-like stalker Manhattan prosecutors have made her out to be, her new lawyer said yesterday. “Go back to Glenn Close in that movie where she’s boiling the kid’s pet, the rabbit, and she goes off the deep end,” defense lawyer Rory Bellantoni said. “There are no allegations of that here.” Read More: New York Post

 

Ex-Port Authority union chief throws a fit when sentenced to 21 months in prison

The 400-pound ex-Port Authority union boss convicted of ripping off his members to feed a hooker craving threw a big, fat tantrum after a judge sentenced him to 21 months in prison. “You suck!” Daniel Hughes bellowed Wednesday at prosecutors and PA investigators in Brooklyn Federal Court. “You piece of s—!” The disgraced labor boss blubbered about his family when U.S. marshals approached to take him into custody. Read More: Daily News