Thursday, April 22, 2010

Jamaica father killed by drunk driver on Whitestone Expressway: Police

The owner of a Manhattan furniture company has been arrested after he allegedly drove drunk Wednesday, striking and killing a Bangladeshi security guard from Jamaica as he crossed the Whitestone Expressway. Comment

Brits marooned at JFK as Iceland volcano causes airport closures

Hundreds of travelers were stranded at John F. Kennedy International Airport this week after a massive plume of ash and smoke discharged by a volcanic eruption Wednesday in Iceland caused the closure of major European airports in the United Kingdom and Northern Europe. Comment

Service workers protest labor conditions in Flushing

An alliance of workers banded together Wednesday afternoon in Flushing to protest unfair and illegal working practices at some city employers. Comment

Ridgewood transgender murder suspect arrested in Las Vegas

A Manhattan man has been charged with murdering a transgender woman in her Ridgewood apartment last month and then pouring bleach all over her body, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Flushing imam sentenced to exile outside United States

Flushing imam Ahmad Wais Afzali was sentenced to time served Thursday in federal court in Brooklyn for lying to federal authorities who were investigating a terror plot involving a member of his mosque. Comment

Beach Channel falls to Tots in title rematch

Sam Innes struggled to find the words to describe his Beach Channel team’s loss to rival Tottenville. The Dolphins were outplayed for the majority of the game, saw the ball constantly in their end and watched the Pirates pass their way to some easy goals. Comment

Tucker finds a home in net for St. Francis

Lauren Tucker was the talk of Tottenville. Comment

Jamaica squatter house prompts DOB action

For at least a year, a foreclosed house in Jamaica has been attracting homeless squatters and has ruined a small block with litter and odor, according to community leaders and residents. Comment
Whitestone Times

College Point woman tied up by burglars

Police were still searching Tuesday afternoon for two men who dressed as construction workers in an attempt to burglarize a College Point woman’s home. Comment

Man stopped at JFK for drug smuggling: Brown

JFK AIRPORT — An upstate man was arraigned two weeks ago for allegedly trying to bring drugs into the country, the Queens district attorney’s office said. Comment

Ex-cop sends authorities on chase in boro: Brown

LAURELTON — A former police officer sent other agents on a wild chase on the street of southeast Queens two weeks ago, the Queens district attorney said. Comment

Stink Grows Stronger in SE Queens

The stench grows worse with each passing day in southeast Queens. Serious questions have been raised about the New Direction Development Corp., a nonprofit created by state Sen. Malcolm Smith and U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks. Comment

Corona spa operator botched procedure: DA

A 23-year-old woman thought she was going to lose some extra pounds when she went in for a liposuction procedure at a Corona clinic last month, but because the operation was performed by an unlicensed specialist, the woman almost lost her life, the Queens district attorney said. Comment

Queens veterans decry status of VA hospital

Queens veterans said they were sick and tired of waiting in limbo on the future of the St. Albans VA Hospital while the state and federal governments fail move forward with upgrading the center. Comment

Rockaway residents slam meeting

The first meeting of Operation Safe Peninsula, an initiative to combat crime in Rockaway created by state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-St. Albans), was a huge failure in the eyes of a dozen or so attendees because Smith failed to show up and the information presented was no different than what can be found at precinct community council meetings or on the Internet. Comment

Klein defends DOE’s plans

City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein said his sentiment that the status quo in public education must be challenged in order to create a more equitable playing field for minority students draws strong support throughout the city, but the specific plans to achieve this have drawn fierce criticism — including from those listening to his speech at York College last week. Comment

Arverne dad charged with shaking baby excessively

A 24-year-old Arverne man was charged with assault last week after his 8-month-old son suffered life-threatening injuries, including bleeding in the brain, Queens DA Richard Brown said. Comment
Fresh Meadows

Jamaica Hill worried about tower removal

Residents aired concerns at a public hearing last week that the upcoming demolition of a water tower in Jamaica Hill would be too noisy in the early morning hours and the remaining space would not be used to benefit the community. Comment

Forest Hills Y to hold inaugural green fair

The Central Queens Y in Forest Hills will host its first interfaith Earth Day fair April 25, which will showcase a multitude of local environmental groups involved in everything from organic food coops to neighborhood community gardens. Comment

Bringing the moves to Queens

Coming off his close win against New Jersey rival “Loose Lee,” Fresh Meadows break dancer Tiangi Fan said his winning moves were not as complex as they may seem to the naked eye. Comment

Civic organizes cleanup of Station Road greenery

Behind a group of well-kept brick homes in Auburndale lies a small green space on Station Road. Comment

Health care law creates uncertainty for NYHQ

New York Hospital Queens made progress in providing patients with new health care options in 2009 and will continue to do so with a series of major developments in 2010, but the outlook for the facility’s long-term future is less bullish, its president and CEO said Monday. Comment
Flushing Times

Slashing suspect’s sanity disputed

The man accused of brutally murdering and eviscerating Qian Wu in the hallway of her Flushing apartment building in January has been declared unfit to stand trial by two psychiatrists, according to his attorney, Michael Schwed. Comment

Census translated inaccurately: Meng

As the U.S. Census Bureau continues to heavily market the critical decennial survey, Assemblywoman Grace Meng (D-Flushing) has found problems with the census’s ability to properly accommodate residents who only speak Korean and Chinese. Comment

Thieves steal parts off of BMW in Bayside: Cops

BAYSIDE — Police were looking for the people involved in the theft of car parts Sunday morning. Comment

Female Cardozo student, 16, missing: Police

BAYSIDE — Police were asking the public’s help to find a missing teen who was last spotted at Benjamin Cardozo High School last month. Comment

Cop hit in left eye while making arrest

BAYSIDE — A man was arrested on charges of assaulting a police officer early Saturday morning, police said. Comment

Coming to Your Census

Federal officials said recently thatless than half of Queens residents have returned their census forms. That makes Queens, with only 47 percent, the second worst in the city. Only Brooklyn is worse with 42 percent. Comment

Feds arrest new suspect in subway plot: Report

New details have come to light about a September plot to bomb the New York City subway system that was spearheaded by a former Flushing High School student and foiled by law enforcement officials, who arrested two of his classmates. Comment

9/11 hero widow sues FDNY

The widow of a retired Little Neck firefighter who died Sept. 11, 2001, at the World Trade Center is suing the city Fire Department to get her husband’s name added to a memorial that honors FDNY members killed during the terrorist attacks. Comment

College Point leaders to strut their stuff for fund-raiser

The elite members of northeastern Queens will be showing off the finest duds straight from wardrobes of the colonial era up through the boutiques of today April 24 and they want all the gentlemen and ladies of the community to come out for the fun. Comment

Activist seeks check of auto shop zoning

Bayside activist Mandingo Tshaka is calling on Community Board 11 and the Queens borough president’s office to investigate whether various auto shops and other businesses along 45th Road are violating city zoning laws. Comment

Quaalude bust nets five Queens residents

A nationwide drug bust last week netted a total of 22 people, including two employees at Bellerose schools and five residents from northeast Queens, the Nassau County district attorney’s office said. Comment

Holocaust survivors speak at Howard Beach memorial

Nearly 6 million Jews were killed by the Nazis during the Holocaust, but Polish survivor Eddie Weinstein said keeping their memories alive is the greatest way to declare victory over the evils that occurred. Comment

Ackerman says health care vote will not affect his re-election bid

U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) said he did not believe his vote on Congress’ health care overhaul bill would play a large role in his re-election campaign this fall and that job creation would likely be the key issue in Washington, D.C., in upcoming months. Comment

Suspect flees scene of senior citizen assault

ASTORIA — Police made an arrest late Tuesday night in connection with an assault on a senior citizen two weeks ago. Comment

Two men tried to steal car in a gas station: DA

EAST ELMHURST — A pair of would-be car thief suspects were arraigned two weeks ago on charges of beating a man who was pumping gas, the Queens district attorney said. Comment

Cops nab bank robber suspect in Astoria

ASTORIA — A suspected bank robber was arrested last week, less than an hour after he allegedly stole cash from a Capitol One branch, police said. Comment

Public disrespected at CB 7 hearing on Flushing Commons

An open letter to Community Board 7. Comment

MTA should keep Q74 bus service intact

While draconian cuts in Metropolitan Transportation Authority service may be necessary, the one cut that should have preceded all others was the dismissal of the chairman of the MTA and its entire governing board because they have demonstrated year after year their ineptitude in running the system. Comment

Birding at Alley Pond Park gives peek at nature’s bounty

The first Saturday in May last year looked like a rainout when I met some other birders to go to Alley Pond Park to see migrating spring birds. Just before 6 a.m., steel-gray rain clouds started to part. At the park, the rain had stopped. Comment

Hate speech has political motives

Usually a Community Board 11 meeting is not spectator sport, but April’s sure could have been. The issue of the David Weprin campaign’s mailing of a swastika-laden flier at the tail end of February’s special election drew many who believed that such an act should be formally reprimanded by the board. Comment

No free ER care for illegal aliens

I must respectfully disagree with your editorial “Care for All Children” in the April 8-14 edition of TimesLedger Newspapers. Comment

A Shortage of Compassion

City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer deserves credit for his effort to broker an accord between neighbors who live near the Hart Playground in Woodside and the nuns from St. John’s Bread and Life who feed the day laborers who gather outside the park. The neighbors met with the people who run the soup kitchen last week. Comment

QueensLine: April ‘23 saw payroll fraud, anti-immigrant resolutions

April 1, 1923, was the most miserably cold Easter in Queens for many years. At 6 o’clock that morning the temperature stood at 12 degrees above zero. Comment

I Sit And Look Out: Two boro schools grow Arbor Day trees

Arbor Day, which New York state observes on the last Friday in April, is important at two schools in Queens: John Bowne High School in Flushing and PS 174, the William Sidney Mount School, in the Crescents section of Rego Park. The entire month of April has been dedicated to environmental projects and tree-plantings under the MillionTreesNYC initiative. Comment

Dishing with Dee: Candidates keep adding names to the race for Carrozza’s seat

The list for the 26th state Assembly seat goes on and does not seem to have any end in sight. It seems to give credence to the opinion of the more jaded among us. That is that being elected to public office beats working for a living. You would think with all the candidates clamoring to get elected we would have a better assortment than the ones we do have or why would they be known as the most dysfunctional state Legislature in the United States? Comment

Berger’s Burg: The tax man has no pity on those who have to pay

The Eiffel Tower is the Empire State Building after taxes. — Anonymous Comment

Exit Kingdom Realty grows despite burst bubble

After Bayside resident Erica Siegel lost her job at the American Cancer Society a couple years ago and decided to venture into real estate, her friends and family wondered if she had lost her mind. Comment

Weiner touts health reform

Queens College students who came to see U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) speak at their school Monday cheered the congressman’s support for the health care reform legislation, particularly the stipulation that young adults can remain on their parents’ policies until they turn 26. Comment

Cops grill SJU teams in shooting

Members of St. John’s University men’s and women’s basketball teams were questioned Friday in a shooting at an Astoria pool hall where a 23-year-old man was shot multiple times, but no arrests have been made in the incident, police said. Comment

Groups rally to fight sex trafficking in Queens

Tackling sex trafficking in Queens — a hub for the activity because of its two international airports — is no easy feat, but borough residents are trying to fight the exploitation with calls for action from area publishers. Comment

Senior center advocates pledge fight to restore critical funding

Preliminary city and state budgets for the 2011 fiscal year would be a serious blow to older residents in Queens, who could see senior centers shuttered and the number of meals served to the elderly reduced, according to officials who attended a forum at Queens Borough Hall last week. Comment

Activist hopes to utilize Ridgewood Theatre

The Ridgewood Theatre may be surging back to life in a new form if Michael Perlman has anything to do with it. Comment

Quinn pushes bill to enhance, grow city’s recycling program

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan) unveiled legislation Sunday that she said would improve and expand the city’s recycling program. Comment

Budget cuts threaten Queens’s youth programs

The Queens Community House faces having much of its youth programming wiped out should preliminary city and state budget proposals be approved, officials from the Forest Hills-based nonprofit said. Comment

3 from Queens busted in N.J. on prostitution: Report

A Flushing woman, Whitestone man and Middle Village man were arrested in New Jersey on prostitution-related charges in two separate busts last week, The Jersey Journal reported. Comment

Queens’ Poles stunned by president’s fatal plane crash

Although Lucas Soklowski has not lived in Poland in nearly 15 years, the Maspeth immigrant said the death of Polish President Lech Kaczynski and his entourage of top government officials in a plane crash Saturday disheartened him and his fellow nationals. Comment

Former Queens hoops coach pleads not guilty in rape

Christ the King High School’s former legendary basketball coach pleaded not guilty this week to child rape charges in Massachusetts’ Suffolk County Superior Court, District Attorney Daniel F. Conley said. Comment

LIC group to serve at Met

A Long Island City company that specializes in organic cupcakes and milk shakes has been chosen by the city to operate as a vendor outside Manhattan’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. Comment

Citi Field takes health concerns out to the ballgame

The North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System and the New York Mets unveiled a partnership between the two at Citi Field last week called the Health Information Team, which gives health and wellness advice at the stadium. Comment

Jamaica dentist treats hundreds of patients in Haiti

Jamaica dentist Dr. Kevin J. Grant said he will never forget the faces of Haiti after he recently traveled to the troubled island nation to help those in pain. Comment

Cops search Howard Beach for missing Brooklyn boy

A frantic search for a Brooklyn foster child missing for nearly three months led police to a grassy area of Howard Beach last week, but all that turned up was dog remains, police said. Comment

Gotti’s children inspired him to end life of crime

For John Gotti Jr., it was having children of his own that persuaded him that it was time to forsake a life of organized crime. Comment

Gambling ring takedown nets Woodside man

A Woodside man and three city employees were among the dozens of suspects indicted last week on charges of taking part in a pair of illegal gambling rings that stretched from Queens to Latin America, the Queens district attorney said. Comment

Boro slow to answer Census

Despite a major campaign effort made by the federal government, parts of Queens are lacking in their census response and the nation’s commerce secretary is pushing to improve that turnout. Comment

Leaders protest cuts to community boards

The borough’s elected officials and community activists rallied on the steps of Borough Hall Tuesday to take a stand against the mayor’s proposal to significantly cut funding to the city’s community boards. Comment

New DEP chief outlines Queens sewer plans

The new commissioner of the city Department of Environmental Protection updated the Borough Board Monday on the hundreds of millions of dollars in sewer projects planned for Queens. Comment

Five boro nabes make New York Mag’s top 20

Sunnyside is “flat-out cheap,” a “hidden gem if there ever was one” and rated the third-best place to live in New York City by New York Magazine. Comment

Bell Academy aces admissions to best schools

A Bayside middle school has reason to boast after a large percentage of its graduating eighth-grade class received offers to attend some of the city’s most prestigious schools. Comment

Addabbo spending questioned

An education advocacy group and an organization created from the remnants of what was once ACORN in New York protested in front of state Sen. Joseph Addabbo’s (D-Howard Beach) office in Howard Beach last week, claiming the senator voted to cut $500 million in city education funding. Comment

Political Action: Lazio, Levy vie for nod from GOP in 3-way race

It is looking as if a confrontation is developing when the Republican State Committee meets in convention in May or June to decide who its statewide candidates will be. That is true of the governorship, where three candidates are competing for the Republican Party endorsement. Comment

Familiar faces

If you live in western Queens, odds are you have walked past students from LaGuardia Community College in Long Island City dozens of times. But you have never seen them like they will appear on the college’s walls for the next few months. Comment

No ambiguity in Amoralist playwright’s success

This writer caught up with playwright and Astoria resident Derek Ahonen just before he was to board a plane to visit his mom in Chicago. Things are looking up for him and The Amoralists, the theater company for whom he’s the resident scribe. Their latest effort, “Happy in the Poorhouse,” has been extended through April 26 at Theatre 80 St. Marks in New York City. Comment

Astoria’s Santos pays tribute to Brazilian roots on CD

Adriano Santos always knew he would play drums. He recollects being drawn to the instrument at 5 years old, pressing his face against store windows and perching beside the stages of local restaurants offering live music in his native Brazil. Now, decades later, Santos asserts with confidence that he couldn’t be happier than he is now — living in Astoria, performing in Manhattan, and recording with some of jazz’s most notable musicians. Comment

Dining Out: El Ay Si: Trendy comfort food in a very LIC setting

To an old Queensite, the changes Long Island City is undergoing are nothing short of astonishing. After minor incursions by arty types, this gritty industrial neighborhood in transition is seeing major residential development in the form of luxury high-rises. Lying that your Long Island City address is actually in Astoria is so o-vah. With all this gentrification going on, it’s no surprise that upscale eateries are sprouting like onion grass in early spring. Comment

The Reel Queens: Queens goes downtown with six flicks in Tribeca Film Fest

The ninth annual Tribeca Film Festival will feature blockbuster premieres and independent films that could go on to be award winners, but this year’s selection of screenings will also feature a smorgasbord of Queens-centric movies. Comment

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Water main break causes flooding in Springfield Gardens

More than a dozen homes in Springfield Gardens were damaged by a massive water main break early Wednesday morning. Comment


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