Author Archives | jc3959

City Comptroller Reexamines Construction of Trump’s Golf Course

City Comptroller John Liu is trying to determine why the golf course project is behind schedule and has ballooned in costs from $22 million to $97 million, the New York Daily News reports.

Last Thursday, Liu informed the parks commissioner that he will reexamine the agency’s handling of the construction.


Posted in Newswire0 Comments

Prosecutors claim Ophadell Williams was severely sleep-deprived

During the third day of the trial, witnesses told the jury that Williams was swerving, straddling lines and speeding up and slowing down before crashing, The New York Times reports.

Williams’s lawyers insisted that the bus was nicked, or cut off, by a tractor trailer.

The crash, that took place on March 21, 2011, on I-95 in the Bronx, killed 15 passengers. Williams is being tried on charges of manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide.

Posted in Newswire0 Comments

Gun is Returned to Officer Involved in Amadou Diallo Shooting

Diallo’s mother, Kadiatou Diallo, said the NYPD decision to restore Officer Kenneth Boss’s service weapon was a betrayal, reports the New York Times.

Amadou Diallo, an unarmed immigrant, was gunned down by police officers who mistook his wallet for a gun. The notorious incident took place in the vestibule of his apartment building in the Bronx on Feb. 4, 1999.

According to the New York Post, Boss had battled three consecutive police commissioners for the right to carry a gun again.

The NYPD did not offer any explanation about the gun restoration.




Posted in Newswire0 Comments

Teenage Navy Enlistee Shot Dead in the Bronx

Victor Maldonado, 19, was trying to break up a fight between two girls when he was gunned down by one of the girls’ relatives, reports New York Daily News.

The event unfolded about 10:20 p.m. Monday on the corner of Kingsbridge Road and Heath Avenue. The gunman, an ex-convict in his 20s, was arrested shortly after the shooting, police said.

Maldonado, who was heading home from a basketball court, had just enlisted in the Navy.


Posted in Newswire0 Comments

Police Question Suspect in Hypodermic Needle Robberies

The suspect, identified as Angel Anthony Cintron, was apprehended Monday in Yonkers, reports NBC 4 New York.

Cintron allegedly threatened victims with a hypodermic needle before demanding property from them. Cell phones, iPads and iPods were among the items stolen, police said.

He was taken into custody by NYPD officers earlier Monday and will be put through lineups in connection with the robberies


Posted in Newswire0 Comments

Latino Voters Say No Way to Romney

In the final stretch of the presidential campaign, both candidates are finally scrambling to capture the attention of the nation’s 25 million Hispanic voters. If Bronx Latinos are any indication, Republican challenger Mitt Romney may have lost that contest by a landslide.

An informal BronxInk survey of 42 Latinos did not find one potential voter who planned to support the GOP candidate. Ninety percent of respondents said they would vote for President Barack Obama, while 10 percent were undecided.

A Sept. 22 survey of 42 Hispanic voters in the Bronx

Some surveyed said Romney had gone out of his way to insult them. “Take my word, 90 percent of the Bronx is going for Obama,” predicted Alberto Colón, a 58-year-old Puerto Rican and retired warehouse worker, interviewed in East Tremont. “Romney offended the people of the Bronx. I don’t believe anything he says.”

Others were skeptical that the GOP contender had any real understanding of their lives. “If you were born in a golden cradle, it’s really likely that you won’t understand what it feels like to be poor,” said Angel Bruno, 67, Puerto Rican-born, who compared Obama to John F. Kennedy. “Obama had a humble childhood and therefore he isn’t indifferent to Latino suffering.”

Sidewalk interviews with residents were conducted on September 22 from the Pelham Parkway neighborhood to the Highbridge section of the Bronx. The 42 respondents ranged in age from 20 to 80. Eight were women and 34 were male. Those surveyed said they emigrated originally from Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Puerto Rico, El Salvador, Ecuador and México. Hispanics represent 54 percent of the population in the Bronx.

Results echoed a national USA TODAY/Gallup Poll released on June 24, that found Obama leads among 66 percent of Hispanics, compared to Romney’s 25 percent. In 2008, Obama won 67 percent of Latinos, while Republican challenger John McCain brought in 31 percent.

On Monday, Sept. 17, Mitt Romney addressed business leaders at the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, saying he is “convinced that the Republican Party is the rightful home for Hispanic Americans.”

However, the Republican Party’s hard line immigration policies and Romney’s support for Arizona’s immigration law, might explain why those surveyed in the Bronx view him cautiously. Eight-two percent said Barack Obama better understands the needs and problems of immigrants.

For Francisco Almaguer Cruz, a 54-year-old Cuban,  Mitt Romney is not an option for immigrants. “You have to be crazy to vote for Romney. He doesn’t care about the poor.”

Hispanics strongly favor Obama in general. Eighty-eight percent of those surveyed said they have a favorable image of Obama, while 51 percent expressed an unfavorable view of Romney.

A Sept. 22 survey of 42 Hispanic voters in the Bronx

Although President Obama in his first term in office did not introduce the immigration reform he promised, over 71 percent of the survey participants approve of the way he has handled immigration.

Raúl Lopez, a 44-year-old Mexican immigrant who has been struggling during the last three years to find a job, believes Obama inherited a tattered economy that has kept him from paying attention to immigration reform. “We have to give him more time,” said Lopez. “Four years are not enough to fix the immigration system.”

Most said they were impressed by Obama’s recent policy decision to defer deportation of undocumented immigrants who were brought to the  United States as children. Over half of the surveyed said they believe Obama when he says if elected again, he will continue to reform immigration policies.

A Sept. 22 survey of 42 Hispanic voters in the Bronx

Still, health care remains the top concern of Latino voters in the Bronx, more than immigration policies. Thirty-three percent selected health care as their top concern, followed by employment, and then immigration.  According to a Gallup Poll, Hispanics put healthcare and all economic issues before immigration.

Many surveyed accused both candidates of pandering to Hispanics. Bronx Hispanics like Reina Ramirez, 54, cast doubt on the candidates’ real commitment to the community. “Behind their promises is a strategy to win votes,” said Ramirez. “They just want to pretend that we’re important because they need our vote.”

Posted in Bronx Neighborhoods, East Bronx, Featured, North Central Bronx, Politics, Southern Bronx0 Comments

Skepticism over East Tremont Initiative to Fight Crime with Whistles

East Tremont residents have been worrying about the rising crime rates in their neighborhood, but they’re not too thrilled about a new plan for fighting the bad guys: whistles.

On July 27 on the steps of Borough Hall, community board leaders and elected officials — surrounded by cameras and expectant seniors — proudly launched their latest proposal: “Senior Citizens Whistle Blowers Public Safety Initiative.” The program aims to distribute whistles that elderly citizens will blow if they are in danger.

The first set of emerald-colored safety whistles were paid for by the medical group Healthfirst. (JUANITA CEBALLOS/The Bronx Ink)

The medical group Healthfirst paid for the first set of emerald-colored safety whistles that showcase their logo on the strap and the whistle. According to Laura Vialva, Healthfirst public relations manager, “roughly 11,000 whistles have been distributed.” Each whistle cost the company 95 cents.

But residents like Rebecca Alexander, 67, a long-term East Tremont resident, are skeptical. “Are they planning to solve the issues we have with a bunch of whistles?” said Alexander.  “It´s just a waste of time and money. Senior citizens will probably leave the whistles at home when they go out.”

That attitude isn’t the only problem. Yolanda Negron, director of social services at Casella Plaza, a housing facility that is home to over 1,000 seniors, is still waiting for the whistles that Healthfirst promised would give to the senior facility. “We gave them advertisement in exchange for 20 whistles,” said Negron. “It’s not my job to chase them and beg for the whistles they promised. If you start something, you have to finish it.”

When asked about Negrons’ complain, Laura Vialva said that there “has been a delay in the delivery of the whistles.” She said that instead of sending the whistles to directly the senior centers, Healthfirst sends them to the Community Boards. “If they don’t receive the whistles they can contact us or Ivine Galarza, Community Board 6 District Manager,” said Vialva.

Residents like Grayling McGinner, 56, say there wasn’t much publicity for the initiative. “I have not heard anything about it,” she said. “And now that I know, I can say that it has no sense. How are senior citizens supposed to blow a whistle if many of them have asthma and other respiratory diseases?”

Larcenia Walton, Bronx Borough senior services director, said community awareness is critical. “Kids play with whistles all the time,” she said. “If residents don’t associate the sound of a whistle with a senior in danger, this program is simply not going to work.

East Tremont retirees like Grover Fuller, 64, a member of Tremont Community Garden, is suspicious of the Community Board’s motives. “Initiatives of this kind are merely distractions from what is really going on,” he said. “It is just politics, nobody really wants to tackle the problems.”

Hellen Leda, director of Mt. Carmel Senior Citizens Center, agrees with Fuller. “It can be a good initiative as long as it is not a political strategy,” said Leda. “At this stage of the year,  you have to be really skeptical about politicians.”

Ivine Galarza, said that the raising crime rates numbers led her to launch the initiative. “I came up with this program because of all the crime that has been taking place in our community, particularly in the areas surrounding senior citizen buildings,” said Galarza.

Neither Galarza nor officers in the 48th Precinct have heard of a case where a whistle was used by a senior citizen to prevent a crime.

Posted in Bronx Beats, Bronx Neighborhoods, Crime, East Bronx0 Comments

Page 2 of 212