Tag Archives: rosedale

Family mourns devoted father killed in his own cab


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy Chinedum Agwu

He came to the U.S. in search of the American Dream, but his brutal murder has left his family living a nightmare.

Nigerian cab driver Uro Orji Ama died after being stabbed in the eye with an umbrella shortly before Father’s Day weekend.

Cops found Ama in his 2000 Mercury Grand Marquis after responding to a traffic accident in Brooklyn on Thursday, June 13, police said.

Now his five children, ranging in age from 13 to 24, are in the midst of moving from Brooklyn to Rosedale to live with close relatives. Their mother is still in Nigeria.

“There are moments where [one of the children] will shout, ‘Daddy! Why did this happen?’” said Chinedum Agwu, Ama’s sister-in-law.

A few months ago, Ama, who was 54, brought the last of his children to the U.S. in the hope of providing for a better life.

Ama was known to work odd jobs even when he was in Nigeria in order to give his children a standard of living he had never known.

“Everything he did was [for] his kids,” Agwu, 30, said. “He wanted to lay the foundation for them to grow on. Each time you called him, he was at work or going to work.”

Ama was dropping off a man and a woman when the man stabbed him through the right eye with an umbrella, piercing Ama’s brain. The cab driver lost control of his car and crashed into parked vehicles. The motive for the stabbing is unknown at this time.

Cops arrived at the scene and rushed Ama to Brookdale University Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead, authorities said.

The NYPD is offering a $12,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspects, while the

New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers is offering an additional $5,000 reward.

Ama’s body will be sent back to Nigeria to be buried. His family is still working to schedule a wake in New York.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Parents, officials demand DOT action following accident near little league field


| mhayes@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Maggie Hayes

Alec MacFarlen, a seven-year-old from Rosedale, was crossing the street near his little league field when he was hit by a speeding car on Monday, April 22.

Although McFarlen survived, locals have had enough.

The community has requested a traffic advisory on 147th Avenue between Brookville Boulevard and 232nd Street for years. But community members claim the Department of Transportation (DOT) never followed up.

Rosedale Little League President Bernie Brown said she and other parents have petitioned DOT since 2006 to put “any sort of traffic advisory” on the stretch of road that she calls dangerous.

“These cars will not let people cross the street,” Brown said. “There are parks on both sides of the street. This is an area filled with children.”

Brown said that when she got the call that McFarlen had been hit, she ran to the spot of the accident. She said the little leaguer had blood coming from his forehead and dripping down his face. Brown added that the youngster had to get four stitches on his head and still has scrapes on his face as well as a bruised ribcage.

“Even as an adult, you can’t cross the street,” said Councilmember Donovan Richards. “It’s nearly impossible.”

Still, there were no fatalities in the area or any surrounding intersection from 2007 to 2011, the most recent years for which data are available. One pedestrian injury was reported at Brookville Boulevard and 147th Avenue in 2010.

Richards and Brown said DOT representatives have been to the area to survey the traffic, but that they come during off-hours. According to Brown, during baseball season the intersection is at its busiest Monday through Friday from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m.

A DOT spokesperson said representatives have been in touch with Richards and the little league about their concerns. The agency plans to re-examine the area to see if there are additional ways to enhance safety for everyone using the street.

The DOT studied the location for a traffic-control device and speed bump in 2009 and 2012, respectively, but the location did not meet the guidelines for installation, according to the spokesperson.

While DOT abides by federal rules, Richards suggested the city “reign in control” of the transportation organization as a possible solution.

“They’re going by federal regulations and we don’t have the pull we need to have them do better,” Richards said. “It’s really disturbing.”

Along with writing letters to DOT, Brown and parents have recently started to file complaints with 3-1-1 about the dearth of traffic devices.

“Set up a blinking yellow light, set up a ‘Children At Play’ sign,” she said. “We’re trying to do a sports program that will keep children off the streets and help mentor them. These kids need an outlet to get rid of some of their stress.”

“Thank god that this little boy—seven years old—has a strong body,” she continued. “He probably will heal, but this will be something he’ll remember for the rest of his life.”

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

 

Body found floating near Idlewild Park Preserve


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Screenshot via Google Maps

Police are investigating a dead woman’s body that was discovered near the Idlewild Park Preserve this morning.

Officers found the unidentified person, who authorities describe as a black female in her 20s, around 1o:30 a.m. floating in the water off of Craft Avenue and Huxley Street in Rosedale. EMS arrived and pronounced her dead.

The medical examiner will determine the cause of death.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Suspect sought in Rosedale attempted bank robbery


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NYPD

Authorities are looking for a man who tried to rob a Bank of American in Rosedale last month.

According to police, on Wednesday, February 27, at approximately 2 p.m., the suspect entered the bank located at 241-42 South Conduit Avenue, approached the teller window and passed a demand note. He then took the demand note back and fled.

The suspect is described as a black man in his 20s, approximately 6 feet tall, 160 to 180 pounds and was wearing a light gray hooded sweatshirt with a black scarf tucked inside around the neck.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

NYPD looking for suspect who shot man in behind, then fled


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy of NYPD

Police are looking for a suspect after he walked up to a man in Rosedale and shot him, said the NYPD

On Saturday, March 2, around 3:50 a.m., the suspect approached the victim in front of 234-36 Merrick Boulevard, displayed a firearm, shot him in the buttocks, then fled on foot.

The victim was transported to Mercy Hospital and is listed in stable condition.

Authorities describe the suspect as a Hispanic male, 20 to 30 years old, 5’11″ tall and 200 pounds. He was last seen wearing a beige jacket and brown pants.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Teen found dead outside Queens home


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

VIA FACEBOOK

A fifteen-year-old girl was found dead outside a home in Rosedale, according to the NYPD.

The body of Aeisha Sarooqui was discovered outside 245-07 135th Avenue around 7:40 a.m. on Sunday morning. Sarooqui lived on Parsons Boulevard, several miles from where she was found.

It is suspected that the cause of death was a drug overdose, according to the New York Post.

Bank robbers wanted in Flushing, Rosedale


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Flushing bank robbery

The NYPD is asking for the public’s assistance in identifying suspects wanted in two separate January bank robberies in Queens.

On Wednesday, January 9, at 9:15 a.m. the first suspect entered a Capital One Bank, located at 145-15 243rd Street in Rosedale, approached the teller and demanded money. The teller complied and the suspect fled with an undetermined amount of money.

The suspect is described as a black male and 5’6″ to 5’9″ tall.

Police are also looking for another man who robbed a Sovereign Bank, located at 150-28 Union Turnpike in Flushing on Friday, January 11, at approximately 3 p.m. During this incident, the suspect approached a bank teller and passed a note demanding money. After receiving the cash, the suspect fled the location.

The suspect is described as a black male, 40 years old, 200 pounds and 5’7 ” tall with brown eyes. He was last seen wearing a black cap and brown waist length jacket.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto Crime Stoppers’ website or by texting their tips to CRIMES (274637), then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

This suspect is wanted for robbing a Capital One Bank in Rosedale on January, 9.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Howard Beach, Lindenwood, Rosedale added to FEMA flood map


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

fema MAP

Howard Beach, Lindenwood and Rosedale were added to FEMA’s latest advisory map on flood zone elevation in an attempt to avoid the same volume of flooding and damage experienced during Sandy.

“This is the first in a series of steps on what will become the regulatory guidance,” FEMA coordinating officer Mike Byrne told NY1. “We want to give them the most current data we can.”

This is the first map FEMA has made for the New York City area in 30 years, he said.

Byrne said these maps will prompt home and business owners to rebuild higher than before, and it was FEMA’s goal to get some information out as soon as possible as people want to rebuild now.

The finalized map might not come out for another two years, he said, but the advisory map could be used now on rebuilding homes. A future map would be based on the current advisories and not the older maps, he said.

“At the end of the day this is to sort of eliminate some of the suffering we’ve seen as a result of storms like Sandy,” he said.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Candidates vie for Sanders’ City Council seat in special election


| mhayes@queenscourier.com

Candidates 15th district

A vacant seat has been left in the 31st Council District by James Sanders’ ascent to the State Senate, and more than one candidate hopes to slide into the spot.

A special election is set to be held on February 19 for the coveted Council seat, covering parts of Springfield Gardens, Laurelton and Rosedale. The race has attracted several different candidates thus far, many of whom have hit the campaign trail running.

Sanders’ former chief-of-staff, Donovan Richards, is considered the front runner, according to multiple media reports. Richards has received endorsements from not only his former boss, but also from the City Council’s Progressive Caucus and the Working Families Party. He worked in the City Council for ten years under Sanders (pictured right), and is now looking to acquire his own seat.

In order to be eligible to run, all candidates must file with the Board of Elections (BOE) by January 15.

Valerie Vazquez, a BOE spokesperson, said that as of press time, Allan Jennings, a former City Councilmember, and Selvena Brooks, who has worked in the State Senate, have filed to run.

Brooks filed her candidacy under the party name “Rebuild Now,” referencing not only rebuilding post-Sandy, but also rebuilding the education system, local economy and neighborhoods.

Marie Adam-Ovide, the district manager of Community Board 8, has been expected to announce her candidacy, as is Earnest Flowers, former chief-of-staff of Assemblymember William Scarborough. Flowers boasts a reputation of making his promises a reality, and having “quantifiable work.”

“The reason why we don’t get a lot of things done is because no one puts anything down on paper, so no one can be held accountable,” said Flowers. “Everything I do is transparent.”

Flowers recently held a fundraising event for his campaign in his home, where he spoke to a crowd of roughly 60 about his passion for the community.

Many others are rumored to join the race, and will face each other on Thursday, February 7 at the 31st District Candidates’ Night. Members of the community will join the candidates in Laurelton at St. Luke’s

Cathedral where they will be given the opportunity to ask the Council hopefuls questions regarding their positions.

RECOMMENDED STORIES 

 

 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Friday: Clear in the morning, then partly cloudy. High of 37 with a windchill as low as 19F. Breezy. Winds from the West at 15 to 20 mph with gusts to 30 mph. Friday night: Clear in the evening, then partly cloudy. Low of 28F with a windchill as low as 19. Breezy. Winds from the WNW at 15 to 20 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: First Look Film Series

This annual showcase at the Museum of the Moving Image presents groundbreaking international cinema. Many of this year’s films take the form of journeys—geographical, emotional and artistic—with 26 works from a dozen countries. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Sandy-battered Rockaway businesses struggle to pay rent to absentee landlord

A pair of Rockaway stores that survived floods, tens of thousand dollars in losses and the exodus of customers due to Sandy now face a new challenge — battling an absentee landlord who wants them to pay up or move out. Read more: New York Daily News

House sets Friday vote for Sandy aid after criticism

The House is headed for a vote on aid for Superstorm Sandy victims after House Speaker John Boehner mollified Republicans from New York and New Jersey upset with his decision to cancel action on the bill. Read more: ABC New York

Meng, Jeffries among 84 new Congress members sworn in

New York City has two new members of Congress. Hakeem Jeffries, representing the Eighth District in Brooklyn and Queens, which includes Bedford-Stuyvesant, Coney Island and Howard Beach, and Grace Meng, of the Sixth District in Queens, which stretches from Ridgewood to Bayside, were among the 84 new members of Congress sworn in Thursday. Read more: NY1

Special election to determine replacement for Sanders’ Council Seat

Voters will be asked to head to the polls and choose a candidate in a special election to replace outgoing City Councilman James Sanders Jr. Read more: NY1

Attempted murder at Long Island mall

Police on Long Island say a man tried to kill another man in a mall parking lot. Read more: Fox New York

House chooses Boehner as speaker again despite dissent

Despite a rocky few weeks during the “fiscal cliff” fight, John Boehner won re-election as speaker of the House of Representatives on Thursday and will again lead Republicans as they take on the White House over federal spending. Read more: Reuters 

 

 

Woman charged with DWI in death of pregnant passenger


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

The woman behind the wheel of a car that flipped into a shallow marsh off of Jamaica Bay leaving a pregnant Queens woman dead has been charged with driving under the influence and without a license, according to the NYPD and media reports.

Denise Finley 32, of Arverne, was heading southbound on Brookville Boulevard in the Rosedale section of Queens around 4:30 a.m. on Sunday when she lost control of the 2000 Ford she was driving, overturning the vehicle into the water off of the roadway, said police.

Her passenger, Dominique Jamison, 25, of Far Rockaway, was removed from the car and taken to Jamaica Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

There were reportedly four other individuals in the vehicle at the time of the accident, three of which were injured.

Finley was taken into custody at the scene and later charged that day.

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Monday: Overcast. High of 37 with a windchill as low as 19F. Winds from the West at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 20%. Monday night: Overcast with a chance of snow and a chance of rain, then a chance of snow after midnight. Low of 32F with a windchill as low as 25. Winds from the West at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 20%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Resorts World New Year’s Eve Bash

Ring in 2013 at Resorts World Casino’s New Year’s Eve Bash from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., where there will be live music, champagne and giveaways. Click here for more info or check out more New Year’s Eve events in Queens

Driver charged with DWI in fatal Queens crash

The driver of a car that overturned into the marshy waters near John F. Kennedy International Airport early Sunday morning, killing a 25-year-old woman, has been arrested. Read more: NBC New York

2 charged with teen’s murder in Far Rockaway

Two suspects were charged Sunday in connection with a shooting this weekend that left a 17-year-old boy dead outside a low-income housing development in Far Rockaway. Read more: CBS New York

Psychiatric test ordered for subway shove suspect

A woman accused of pushing a man to his death in front of a subway train told police she did so because she blamed Muslims for the Sept. 11 attacks, and because “I thought it would be cool,” prosecutors said at a court hearing. Read more: ABC New York/AP

President Obama’s determined to get a gun-control law in place early in his second term

President Obama called the Newtown school massacre “the worst day” of his presidency as he reiterated Sunday his determination to sign a gun-control bill into law early in his second term. Read more: New York Daily News

Hillary Clinton hospitalized after doctors discover blood clot

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton was admitted to a New York hospital Sunday after the discovery of a blood clot stemming from the concussion she sustained earlier this month. Read more: AP

Fiscal cliff: Biden, McConnell make major progress

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Vice President Joe Biden made major progress toward a year-end tax bill overnight. Read more: Politico

Suspect wanted for 11 armed robberies in Queens


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

11 robberies

The NYPD is asking for the public’s assistance in locating a man wanted for committing 11 gunpoint robberies in various areas of Queens.

Darren Hicks, 28, first robbed a Pepsi delivery truck driver in front of the J&C Grocery store at 110-02 Guy R. Brewer Boulevard in Jamaica around 2:50 p.m. on July 3. He committed 10 more robberies throughout July and early August, holding up other delivery truck drivers and several businesses.

The last two robberies occurred on August 2 within about a 30 minute period. Around 11:30 a.m. the suspect robbed a driver unloading his truck outside the Key Food Supermarket at 213-22 Jamaica Avenue in Queens Village, then held up another delivery man while he was in his truck in front of the Rite Aid drugstore at 222-14 Linden Boulevard in Cambria Heights.

Robberies also occurred in the Rosedale, Hollis and Saint Albans areas of Queens.

The suspect is described as approximately 5 feet 1o inches tall and 150 to 180 pounds. In several of the incidents, including the last one on Linden Boulevard, he fled in a white sedan, possibly a Honda Accord or Ford Focus.

Anyone with information in regard to this suspect or any of the listed incidents is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).  The public can also submit tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.  All calls are strictly confidential.

West Nile spraying in Queens today


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

Days after the first human case of West Nile virus was identified, the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene announced they will spray larvicide in three Queens neighborhoods.

A Staten Island man was the first confirmed human case of the West Nile virus this year, after 11 were diagnosed with the virus a year ago.

“This first human case of West Nile virus this season provides a vital reminder to protect ourselves against mosquito bites,” said Dr. Thomas Farley, the city’s health commissioner. “Eliminating standing water from your property will help prevent mosquitoes from multiplying. Wearing mosquito repellent when you are outdoors, and long sleeves and pants in the morning and evening will reduce your risk of infection. New Yorkers age 50 and older should be especially careful as they are more likely to become seriously ill, and in rare instances die, if infected.”

Twenty pools of standing water have tested positive for the virus in Queens.

The Health Department will spray parts of Rosedale, Brookville, Laurelton, Springfield Park and Brookville Park beginning on July 31 at 8:15 a.m. The application of the larvicide will last until 6 a.m. the next day.

The area being sprayed is bordered by Francis Lewis Boulevard and 130th Avenue to the north; the Belt Parkway, Farmers Boulevard and Guy R Brewer Boulevard to the west; Rockaway Boulevard to the south and Hook Creek Boulevard, Hook Creek and the Nassau County border to the east.

The pesticide being used, Anvil 10 + 10, poses no health risks when used properly, but the Health Department recommends that people take the following precautions to minimize direct exposure:

• Whenever possible, stay indoors during spraying. People with asthma or other respiratory conditions are encouraged to stay inside during spraying since direct exposure could worsen these conditions.

• Air conditioners may remain on, however, if you wish to reduce the possibility of indoor exposure to pesticides, set the air conditioner vent to the closed position, or choose the re-circulate function.

• Remove children’s toys, outdoor equipment and clothes from outdoor areas during spraying. If outdoor equipment and toys are exposed to pesticides, wash them with soap and water before using again.

• Wash skin and clothing exposed to pesticides with soap and water. Always wash your produce thoroughly with water before cooking or eating.

 

Help for Home Owners


| mpantelidis@queenscourier.com

The city is aiming to restore the homeownership hopes of Queens residents hit hard by the foreclosure crisis.

Deputy Mayor Robert Steel and New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Commissioner Mathew Wambua joined Queens elected officials, as well as representatives from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the New York Mortgage Coalition on November 15 to announce the commencement of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program 2 (NSP2) Buyer Assistance Program.

The program, which targets areas in Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island, grants qualified homebuyers with as much as $80,000 in forgivable loans towards the purchase of foreclosed or vacant homes in eligible neighborhoods. Housing counseling and homeowner training will also be provided for participants as part of the program.

“HUD’s investment in New York City via the NSP2 program is a key component in Mayor Bloomberg’s efforts to help reverse the deleterious effects of foreclosure on our neighborhoods,” said Steel. “The single-family foreclosure crisis has significantly impacted neighborhoods across Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island, and stabilizing these communities is critical to New York City’s economic recovery. HPD’s efforts in securing this funding and working with the NY Mortgage Coalition in creating this initiative will help make homes affordable for qualified buyers looking to put down roots in these neighborhoods.”

After the creation of NSP2, HPD assessed the level of foreclosure activity in each eligible census area between 2007 and 2009. During their study, the department determined that roughly 8,133 total mortgages were in danger of foreclosure, 5,780 of which were in Queens.

Eligible neighborhoods were selected by HUD based on the severity to which they were adversely impacted by the foreclosure crisis. Jackson Heights, Corona, the Rockways, Bellerose, Rosedale, Howard Beach, Jamaica and South Ozone Park are the Queens communities eligible for the program.

“The NSP has been able to help stabilize housing prices and neighborhoods in Queens,” said Councilmember Leroy Comrie, who represents Jamaica and Rosedale. “Having worked with constituents and with non-profits in the borough, I have seen firsthand how this program helped counsel new homeowners, preserve the quality of life within the community, and give us a fighting chance against the foreclosure crisis, which makes me glad to see it will continue.”

Prospective homebuyers who hope to participate in the Buyer Assistance Program cannot have an income in excess of 120 percent of the Area Median Income. They are also required to receive a minimum of eight hours of homeownership counseling and the foreclosed or vacant home must become the participant’s primary residence.

“Investing in our neighborhoods is essential if we are to preserve them,” said Wambua. “NSP helps us to educate and empower families, allowing those who qualify to make affordable investments in areas of Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island that have borne the brunt of small home foreclosures.”