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Woman’s sister arrested in Queensbridge murder

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A Queensbridge woman was charged Wednesday in the Saturday murder of her sister and wounding her sister’s boyfriend in the apartment they shared with her sister’s 4-year-old son, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.Police officers responded to an assault in progress in the 12th Street home of Tara Webb, 27, when they discovered two people who had been shot, authorities said.

Webb, who has a 4-year-old son, was shot once in the chest around 2:19 a.m. Saturday and taken to New York Presbyterian Hospital in Manhattan, where she was pronounced dead on arrival, police and the DA said.

Webb’s sister, Melanie Webb, of 40-07 12th St., was charged Wednesday with murder, criminal possession of a weapon. attempted murder and assault before Queens Criminal Court Judge Mary O’Donoghue, who ordered Melanie Webb held without bail.

Melanie Webb faces up to 50 years to life in prison if convicted of the charges and is expected to return to court April 13, Brown said.

Tara Webb’s boyfriend, 26-year-old Terrell Carmichael, was shot twice in the torso and listed in stable condition at New York Presbyterian Hospital, police and the DA said.

“What should have been a joyous occasion for the victim, marking the anniversary of her birth, will now forever mark the day of her death,” Brown said in a statement. “Moreover, this incident leaves her young son to grapple with the fact that not only did his mother’s life end in violence but that his aunt has been charged in the death.”

Melanie Webb

Queensbridge residents who gathered in a courtyard Saturday near Webb’s apartment said they knew nothing about her murder.

A couple of candles and Happy Birthday balloons were placed outside the entrance to the apartment building.

The murder was the second fatality over three days in western Queens.

In the early hours Monday a 68-year-old Manhattan man was killed by an out-of-control car which flipped over while exiting the Queensboro Bridge onto Queens Plaza South, the Police Department said.

Police got the call shortly after 4 a.m. about a pedestrian struck near Queens Plaza North and Crescent Street. A 34-year-old man, whose name had not been released as of press time, was driving a 2007 Volkswagen and had been trying to turn along the curve of the exit at Queens Plaza South when he lost control of the vehicle and struck a guard rail, police said.

After hitting the guard rail, the car flipped over and continued moving southeast onto the sidewalk and struck Anthony Buscemi, of West 83rd Street in Manhattan, who was walking on the sidewalk, police said. Officers who arrived pronounced Buscemi dead at the scene.

Family of Buscemi could not be located. The New York Post reported Buscemi worked as a cab driver at Midtown Operating Corp. at 42-50 24th St. in Long Island City, about three blocks away from where the accident occurred.

The driver, who had not been charged as of Tuesday evening, was taken to Bellevue Hospital Center at 462 First Ave. in Manhattan, police said. A passenger in the car, a 31-year-old woman, was taken to New York Presbyterian in Manhattan, police said. Both were in stable condition, police said.

The crash also caused damage to nearby stores, police said.

The investigation into the crash was ongoing as of press time Tuesday evening, police said.

The Post reported the driver lost his arm in the accident.

Queens Plaza has been undergoing renovation since August 2009, when the city broke ground on improvements to put in new sidewalks, greenery, traffic medians and lighting as well as 1.5 acres of open space. Phase 1 of the project cost $37.7 million in federal funds and $6.6 million in capital funds. The city Economic Development Corp.’s web site said the project is intended to make the area better for motorists and pedestrians.

Neighbors interviewed by the Post, however, said motorists have trouble seeing the Queens Plaza South exit since the revamp.

“I notice a lot of near-misses,” dentist Matthew Hyde, who works close to the accident, told the Post. “I see a lot of almost-accidents.”

Howard Koplowitz contributed reporting.

Reach reporter Rebecca Henely by e-mail at rhenely@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4564.

Updated 10:56 am, October 12, 2011
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