Saturday, June 30, 2012


(Photos by Gary Quintal) 
Independence Day came early this year as Bronxites celebrated the birth of our country. Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. and State Sen. Jeff Klein held the annual Salute to America fireworks event at Orchard Beach on Friday. In addition to a host of fireworks which rivals Macy’s annual event, Bronxites were treated to the sounds of Alive N Kickin’.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Crackin' Up

Yankees Bullpen Fails to Save
White Sox Win, 4-3
(Maybe it's the heat but Yankee fans weren't the only ones who exhibited strange behavior. The bullpen blew Ivan Nova's stellar performance. Photos by Ken Carozza)

By Howard Goldin
BRONX, NEW YORK, June 29- The Yankees relievers in the ninth inning of Thursday night’s contest failed to preserve a 3-1 lead. A three-run homer by Dayn Viciedo of Chicago ended the Yankees five-game winning streak and the six-game winning streak over the White Sox. New York remained five games in front in the American League East as every team in the division lost on Thursday.
Yankees starter Ivan Nova made a strong attempt to win his sixth straight decision. The 25-year old pitched 7.1 innings. He gave up only a single run during his impressive stint on a two-out home run to Alejandro de Aza in the fifth. He surrendered five other hits, walked three batters and fanned five.
The Sox threated Nova only in the fourth as base hits put runners on first and third with no one out. A short fly to Center and a double play ended the threat without a run being scored.
Chicago starter Dylan Axelrod also pitched an outstanding game. Axelrod only faced difficulty in the fourth and fifth frames. A-Rod doubled to lead-off the fourth. After two batters were retired, Nick Swisher and Raúl Ibañez walked to load the bases. Eric Chavez grounded to third to end the inning without a Yankee run.
The Yankees put their first runs on the scoreboard after two were retired in the following inning. Curtis Granderson singled. He scored on A-Rod’s second double in two innings. Rodriguez crossed the plate on a double by the next batter, Robinson Cano.
A two-out homer by Mark Teixeira, his 13th of 2012, in the bottom of the eighth put the Yanks ahead, 3-2.
The outcome was determined in the top of the ninth as the White Sox put three on the board against Yankees relievers. The Yankees pen men entered the contest second in the majors in ERA and second in allowing inherited runners to score.
Alex Rios began the ninth with a single off Cody Eppley, who retired the final batter in the eighth. Yankee skipper Joe Girardi then brought in Clay Rapada. The lefty did what was hoped for, got A.J. Pierzyinski to ground to the pitcher for what appeared to be an easy double play. Instead of two men being out, Rapada threw the ball into center field. David Robertson a righty, then came into the game and gave up the winning blow.
In the post-game press conference, Girardi faced a barrage of questions regarding his use of the relievers. Of not using closer Rafael Soriano, who has 17 saves in 18 opportunities this year, “I can’t run him out five out of six days after the very tough day yesterday and get him hurt.”
Explaining why he didn’t begin the ninth with Robertson, he said, “We’ve only used him once back-to-back. I’m going to be cautious.”  Robertson was on the disabled list from May 15-June 14.
Adam Warren of the Yanks will make his Major League debut in the second contest of the four game series on Friday night. He will face Jose Quintana (2-1) will a minuscule Era of 125.

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Thursday, June 28, 2012

BP Hails Supreme’s Upholding of Obamacare

(Views on the News)

The following statement is from Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. on the ruling by the Supreme Court upholding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act:

“Today the Supreme Court delivered a major victory for the American people by upholding the‘individual mandate’ of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act today.

“This is an important law that affects millions of residents across the country. In a Borough where a high percentage of residents are uninsured, it is imperative for this law to remain so that Bronxites can access and afford the care they need. According to the Bronx Health Link, had the bill been upheld in its entirety, about 99,000 Bronx residents would have gained insurance coverage, and the uninsured rate would have gone down from 21 percent in 2009 to 14 percent. Moreover, up to 70,000 more New York State residents would have been eligible for Medicaid starting in 2014.
“It is because of this law we have made a fundamental and transformative change to how those with preexisting conditions will receive the care they so desperately need. It is because of this law we have taken a substantial step in fixing a broken system.
“But there is more work to be done; by striking down the Medicaid expansion we have missed a tremendous opportunity to impact those areas with the greatest economic need. We must continue push Congress to make the needed reforms to Medicaid so that more Americans can receive benefits under this important program.
“We thank the President for his leadership. Residents in our Borough and those across the country will have greater rights and protections when it comes to healthcare. Today is a victory for all Americans,” said Bronx borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.

Filter Plant, Homeless Shelter Debates Heat Up




Father Richard F. Gorman


Community Board #12 (The Bronx)

Summer has arrived. 

Officially, it came at 7:09 p.m. on Wednesday evening, 20 June 2012. Even if we were not aware of the official starting time for the season, we have already witnessed indications of its advent.  School is out and our children are on their annual 10-week hiatus from pens, pencils, and books for reading, writing, and arithmetic. We had our first blast of “triple-H”  --  as in “H”azy, “H”ot, and “H”umid  --  weather. The Fourth of July is upon us and already there is talk of expeditions for sales at shopping malls and of excursions to a favorite park site or beach front.  Swimming pools have had pool covers and tires subtracted and chlorine to the water added. Barbeques have lost their cold weather coat. Yes, it is time for relaxation, refreshment, and renewal. Now is the moment to cast routine aside and take a break from the humdrum of the usual.

I am afraid, though, that such is not going to be the case for us folks at the Town Hall Headquarters of Community Board #12 (The Bronx) this Summer. In addition to the usual Summertime public safety and quality of life issues  --  and those problems have already begun to rear their ugly head  --  many other concerns appear not to be taking Summer vacation at this point.  For example, in my column last week, I related to you some of the controversies that continue to attend the construction of the Croton Water Filtration Plant in what used to be Van Cortlandt Park’s Mosholu Golf Course and Driving Range. It never ceases to amaze me how the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (N.Y.C.D.E.P.) can find every nickel it needs  --  not to mention literally tens of millions of dollars  -- to accommodate its unquenchable thirst for additional funding in order to cover the ever-escalating costs of this behemoth of a project. N.Y.C.D.E.P. even knows how to spend our money in covering the costs of projects connected to the Croton Water Filtration Plant that proved to be unnecessary  --  e.g., the force main that was supposed to run the length of our Borough from the plant site to Hunts Point, for the most part under Webster Avenue. Meanwhile, there is not a solitary cent from the City of New York  --  and specifically, its Department of Environmental Protection (N.Y.C.D.E.P.)  --  to honor the commitments made to the people of the Borough of The Bronx, such as building the long anticipated pedestrian bridge in Van Cortlandt Park! What must Bronxites do to get the Bloomberg Administration and N.Y.C.D.E.P. to abide by its promises to the people, not to mention legislative actions of the New York City Council? Must we occupy a park on Wall Street or scream at night outside the Mayor’s Manhattan townhouse?

While we are on the matter of the Croton Water Fleece-the-Taxpayer Project, at last week’s June meeting of the Croton Filtration Monitoring Committee (C.F.M.C.), N.Y.C.D.E.P. representative Mark Lanaghan matter-of-factly announced that there would be no Summer meeting of the Monitoring Committee and that he would only be attending quarterly meetings of the Monitoring Committee henceforth.  The absence of a Summer C.F.M.C. Meeting is no great deficiency as the Monitoring Committee only met once during the Summer since its inception. When “YOURS TRULY” was C.F.M.C. Chairman last year, I called a Summer meeting since N.Y.C.D.E.P. was completely closing down and totally tearing up Goulden Avenue during July and August. I felt that convening a meeting of the Monitoring Committee would provide local residents with a public forum at which to register any complaints or inconveniences arising from the street closure as well as affording the C.F.M.C. an opportunity to keep an eye on it.  
As far as Mr. Lanaghan’s “four-meetings-only” decree, it is any surprise that he and his bureaucratic cohorts would disregard the majority decision of the Monitoring Committee to conduct monthly meetings if N.Y.C.D.E.P. ignores with impunity legislative decisions of the New York City Council?  Curiously, Bronx Community Board #7 Chairman Paul Foster, who is serving as Monitoring Committee Chairman for 2012, is neither as surprised nor outraged at this disrespect to his C.F.M.C. confrères as is “YOURS TRULY,” who vigorously challenged Mr. Foster on his determination to forget about Mr. Lanaghan’s impertinent effrontery until the Committee’s September gathering. 
Fortunately, Council Member G. Oliver Koppell, also a member of the Monitoring Committee, has indicated that he will again approach N.Y.C.D.E.P. Commissioner Carter Strickland on this issue as I trust will our Borough President of The Bronx, The Honorable Ruben Diaz, Jr., who weighed in along with Council Member Koppell in support of the Monitoring Committee’s majority vote to meet on a monthly basis.

Closer to Town Hall, however, after months of no news, there is no good news about the homeless colony being planned for the intersection of Bronx Boulevard and East 238TH Street/Nereid Avenue in the Wakefield section of Bronx Community District #12.  
On Monday morning, 18 June 2012, Department of Homeless Services Commissioner Seth Diamond paid a visit to me and District Manager Carmen L. Rosa at Town Hall accompanied by his aides Douglas C. James and Alex T. Zablocki.  Commissioner Diamond is well aware of our continued opposition to the homeless facilities to be operated by PROJECT RENEWAL at 4380 Bronx Boulevard and by THE DOE FUND at 555 Nereid Avenue/East 238TH Street in the shuttered Sergeant Joseph A. Muller United States Army Reserve Center (Muller U.S.A.R.C.). Nonetheless, Community Board #12 (The Bronx) is prudently pursuing a two-pronged approach in this regard. While seeking every avenue available to prevent either or both shelters from ever opening, the Community Board will simultaneously engage in a respectful dialogue with Commissioner Diamond and the New York City Department of Homeless Services (N.Y.C.D.H.S.) in an effort to pre-empt altogether, or at least to mitigate, any injurious impact upon the local neighborhood due to the operation of these shelters. Issues such as the congregation of the shelter residents on sidewalks outside of these facilities for purposes of recreation, socialization, or smoking; the presence of security measures, such as cameras, within and without the facilities; staffing levels; and the involvement of shelter residents in the daily life of our neighborhood were discussed. The lack of straightforward and ongoing communication with the proposed operating agencies of these facilities as well as the operators’ need for recurrent participation in Community Board and in other meetings and events in Bronx Community District #12 were examined as well. I wish to thank most sincerely N.Y.C.D.H.S. Commissioner Seth Diamond for his courtesy and respect to me and to Ms. Rosa in coming to Town Hall in order to confer with us on a contentious matter. Perhaps, Mr. Lanaghan and Commissioner Diamond’s fellow supposedly “civil” servants at N.Y.C.D.E.P. could learn a lesson or two (2) from him on how to deal maturely with the taxpayers who pay their salary

Commissioner Diamond’s appearance at Town Hall presaged, and, perhaps, was in his anticipation of our impending receipt of correspondence from Federal agencies involved in the closure and the transfer of the Muller U.S.A.R.C. to Mayor Bloomberg and to Borough President Diaz that likewise arrived at Town Hall last week. The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (U.S.H.U.D.) has written to Mayor Bloomberg indicating that, since the procedures for legally transferring jurisdiction of the Muller U.S.A.R.C. to the City of New York have been suitably complied with, the City’s Department of Homeless Services (N.Y.C.D.H.S.) may now proceed to utilize the former National Guard base for homelessness assistance. Concurrently, an official in charge of the Environmental Division of the 99TH Regional Support Command of the United States Department of the Army corresponded with our Borough President in order solicit concerns relative to the environmental impact upon the neighborhood as a consequence of the transfer and the re-use of the Muller U.S.A.R.C. Appropriate courses of action have been undertaken and/or are being contemplated relative to both of the issues addressed by the aforementioned letters  --  viz., adherence to the prerequisites of the transfer process and the environmental safety of the site. Our side is certainly at a disadvantage, but we are neither out of options nor ready to throw in the towel as of yet.

Summer may be the time for vacation, but there will be no vacation for Community Board #12 (The Bronx) on any number of concerns confronting our neighborhood. Hopefully, all will be able to find cool spots and moments from the hot weather that comes with this season. Your Community Board promises to maintain a cool head as it deals with these and several other hot topics during July and August.

Until next time, that is it for this time!

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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Andy’s Down!

Yankees lose Pettitte and sweep Indians; 

Sabathia also on the DL

By Rich Mancuso

BRONX, NEW YORK, June 27- Yankees manager Joe Girardi arrived at the ballpark early Wednesday and felt good about his team. But a few hours later after New York swept a three-game series from the Cleveland Indians, he never envisioned losing starting pitchers CC Sabathia and Andy Pettitte to injuries.

Pettitte, the starter Wednesday afternoon in the Bronx was lifted in the fifth inning when he was hit in the leg on a line drive off the bat of the Indians Casey Kotchman with the Yankees trailing 2-1.
Later in the sixth inning, in a game the Yankees would eventually won, 5-4, Girardi was informed that Pettitte had sustained a left ankle fracture. The left hander who returned in early May, after a brief one-year retirement, was placed in an ankle boot and will be out of action for the next six weeks.
Pettitte, who was once again in command, allowing two runs in four innings, and his injury was the last thing Girardi and the Yankees expected to hear. Earlier the team placed Sabathia on the disabled list with a strained left groin.
Sabathia, 9-3, developed discomfort on his left side in the fourth inning Sunday in his last start against the New York Mets.
“A bad day for lefthanders today,” commented Girardi to the media after his team won their fifth straight, and 15th in their last 18 games. “Guys will have to step it up,” he said.
And the Yankees, who have dealt with adversity with their pitching staff, are expected to overcome this setback to their rotation. Before the season they lost newly acquired starter, Michael Pineda the entire season due to right rotator cuff tendinitis.
All-time saves leader Mariano Rivera, had surgery last week for a torn ACL of the right knee. He is not expected to return this season from the freak injury he sustained shagging fly balls in the outfield last month before the Yankees took on the Kansas City Royals at Kaufman Stadium.
“If we have to score some runs, we’ll score some runs,” said Girardi about being without two-thirds of his starting rotation. New York got another home run Wednesday, the 18th of the season from Robinson Cano in the sixth inning.
The home run gave the Yankees a 4-3 lead, their 117th as a team which increased their major league high
Sabathia is expected to miss two starts and return after the all-star break in mid July. “I wanted to go out and pitch Friday, but it’s early in the season and I want to be healthy,” he said.
Right hander Freddy Garcia will once again fill the void and be one of the guys that Girardi hopes will step up. Garcia, (2-2) could get the start Friday which was scheduled for Sabathia.
He came on with two outs in the fifth inning after Cody Eppley and Clay Rapada got the first two outs. The Yankees also will bring up right hander Adam Warren (5-5) with a 3.86 ERA at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
He could get the start Friday, with Garcia filling the spot for Pettitte who was scheduled to pitch again Monday night when the Yankees open their next road trip at Tampa Bay.
Warren is slowly getting an opportunity to be in the spotlight and the Yankees say they will not rush the youngster into a major role. Though with the unexpected injuries to Sabathia and Pettitte, and with the Yankees not looking to go outside the organization for help, Warren is expected to also fill the void.
“I would prefer to not go outside,” said Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman when asked about acquiring pitching help. “Let’s play it out and see.”
Added Girardi, regarding how his other healthy starters may have to step up, “They can’t make starts for Andy. That’s the thing they have to understand,” referring to Ivan Nova, Phil Hughes and Hiroki Kuroda.
And if the trend holds, the Yankees will survive this latest round of adversity as the Chicago White Sox come to the Bronx to start a four-game series Thursday night.
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Scandal Padlocks Pride Center

In 2007, Lisa Winters (Left) posed with a member of the Weather Girls who performed for a gala fundraiser for the Bronx Community Pride Center. The center will cease operations on Saturday.

(Photo by Gary Quintal)

BRONX, NEW YORK, June 27- The Bronx’s only gay community center will close its doors for good on Saturday in the wake of the scandal in which its former director has been charged with embezzling over $300,000.
Lisa Winters, former executive director of the Bronx Community Pride Center was indicted last week on charges that she used $338,000 in center funds to pay for such items as a trip to South Africa, clothes, personal expenses including a dog walker. 
The Bronx Community Pride Center has released the following statement: 
The board of directors of the Bronx Community Pride Center (BCPC), the borough’s largest LGBTQ service organization, has unanimously voted to cease operations of the center on June 30, 2012 and to begin making arrangements for current services to be provided by partner organizations within the Bronx.
Due to BCPC’s current economic difficulties, past debt and inability to raise sufficient unrestricted funding, the organization can no longer implement its current programs. The organization has debts which exceed revenues at this time and without significant cash infusions from major donors they are unable to continue operations financially.
The Board of Directors is committed to assisting in any way to make sure that our clients continue to be served, especially since this population is traditionally under served in the Bronx. We’re a group of caring individuals and this decision has been difficult for us to make but we will never give up for our mission of heath equality.
“As BCPC closes I ask that all Bronx LGBTQ organizations come together and fill the void that would be left behind. The Board of Directors is committed to assisting in any way to make sure that our clients continue to be served, especially since this population is traditionally under served in the Bronx. We’re a group of caring individuals and this decision has been difficult for us to make, but we will never give up for our mission of heath equality,” said Antonio Centeno Jr., BCPC Board Chairperson.
The Bronx Community Pride Center is a non-for-profit organization which was incorporated in 1997 as the Bronx Lesbian and Gay Health Resource Consortium. Around 2005/2006 the name and mission was changed and the agency then became a community center. The organization is a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (“LGBT”) center that provides direct supportive and case management services including educational, cultural and wellness programs to nurture and support members of our community. They provide training and education opportunities to help train future leaders which will promote the heath of the LGBT community.

Ump Blows it as Yanks Win

Replay Debate Heats Up after Screw Up
By Rich Mancuso
BRONX, NEW YORK, June 27- Phil Hughes pitched eight strong innings and the New York Yankees, with a three-run first inning and a late home run from Alex Rodriguez overcame a ninth inning rally and defeated the Cleveland Indians 6-4 in the Bronx Tuesday night.
But the game story was not about the Yankees hitting another home run, a solo shot by Rodriguez in the seventh that gave New York a 5-0 lead. It was a ball that was supposedly caught by Dewayne Wise when he went over the wall down the left field line with two outs in the Indians seventh inning, on a ball hit off the bat of Jack Hannahan.
Third base umpire Mike DiMuro, after the game, saw the play on replay and realized the ball hit off Wise’s glove and fell in the stands. At the time, the Indians had a runner on third base.
Had the play been ruled a foul ball, it may not have mattered in the final outcome. Though Cleveland would score four runs in the ninth off Cory Wade, including a home run before Rafael Soriano recorded the final out and his 16th save.
DiMuro, a veteran umpire of twelve years said, “Now that I see the tape it is obvious that the ball fell out of his (Wise) glove. In hindsight, I should have asked him to show me the ball since he fell into the stands and out of my line of vision.”
Yankees manager Joe Girardi said about the play, “It was a tough play. As much as we want them to be perfect (umpires) they are so much under a micro scope.” But, the Yankees, as with every team in baseball have been the victims of calls that have gone against them.
This time they could joke about the play and call. However, the missed call once again brings up the question about expanding the use of instant replay in the game.
Wise got a huge ovation from the crowd and tapped the glove of Yankee captain Derek Jeter as they ran to the dugout.
“What was I supposed to do run back to left field?” commented Wise about the play that also got a smile from Hughes. “I saw him looking at my glove so I just got up, put my head down and ran off the field,” he said about the call from DiMuro.
Hughes (8-6) gave up six hits, and struck out four in winning for the fifth time in his last seven starts. Rodriguez hit his 13th home run and 642nd of his career. The Yankees increased their major league lead home run total to 116 and won their fourth straight game.
“We only hit one home run,” said Girardi that got a laugh from media in his post game press conference. New York had a streak end of five straight games with two home runs or more. 
They look to sweep Cleveland Wednesday afternoon and are a season high 17 games over .500, with a four game lead in the American League east.
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Monday, June 25, 2012

Business Booming for Bronx Bank Robbers

By David Greene
BRONX, NEW YORK, June 25- With unemployment in the borough once again at record levels, a handful of individuals have been robbing banks at an alarming rate--keeping themselves and cops extremely busy with no less than 21 robberies or attempts since January.
In the latest incident a gunman entered the Capital One Bank at 725 Co-op City Boulevard at Just before 10 a.m., on June 16. The suspect fled with an unknown amount of cash. The NYPD has not released any information pertaining to this case.
In the other recent cases, it was just after 10 a.m. on June 14, when a man entered the Bank of America branch located at 2198 White Plains Road. The suspect passed the teller a note, demanding cash before fleeing.
Police described that suspect as a male Black, 5 foot 8, with a medium build. The perpetrator was reported to be wearing army-style shorts and hat.
Less than an hour earlier a man entered the HSBC Bank located at 3478 Boston Road. The suspect passed the teller a note demanded cash, but apparently fled empty handed.
That suspect was described as a male Black wearing a fishing hat.
On Wednesday, June 13, police were called to the Banco Popular at 752 E. Tremont Avenue, after a man held up the bank at gunpoint.
A source close to the investigation stated at the time that the suspect was possibly wanted for another recent robbery at the same bank. That suspect was described as a male Black in his 20's, 6-feet tall, wearing a black pea-coat, black hooded sweatshirt and blue jeans.
On June 12, a man robbed the Capital One Bank at 19 E. Mt. Eden Avenue. That suspect was described as a heavy-set male Black, weighing 220 pounds, wearing a purple shirt and hat.
Back on June 8, a man entered the Chase Bank, located at 360 E. 149 Street, passed the teller a note and fled with an unknown amount of cash. This suspect was described as a Black male, 5' 5'' with a slim build.
A Baychester CitiBank was robbed on June 7. Police were called to 3955 Baychester Avenue at 9:30 a.m., that suspect was only described as a male Black, dressed in black.
On May 30, police once again were called to Capital One on Co-op City Boulevard, when two suspects, only described as male Black's, stole $3000 in US currency.
On May 18, police were again called to the Banco Popular on E. Tremont Avenue, after a hold-up. The gunman fled with an undetermined amount of cash.
On May 16, a robbery was reported at the Emigrant Savings Bank at 101 E. 170 Street. The perpetrator was described as a male Hispanic wearing a black shirt.
On May 14 a man robbed the HSBC Bank on W. 235 Street in Riverdale of $3,228. Police would later release a surveillance photo of the suspect, described as a Black man in his 20's, wearing a fake beard and a black baseball cap.
The same suspect is also wanted for two similar hold-ups in Brooklyn.
On May 5, an incident at the Chase Bank at 5 E. Burnside Avenue was reported, but it is not known if the suspect fled with any money.
The Chase Bank at 784 Castle Hill Avenue reported a robbery by a Black male on April 21.
On March 31, a hold-up was reported at the Chase Bank at 3775 Riverdale Avenue. Police were reportedly looking for a white male, who apparently fled empty-handed after the teller hit a silent alarm.
On January 18, an attempt was made at the Capital One Bank located at 2159 White Plains Road. Determined to make a withdrawal, sources say the suspect then walked over to the Chase Bank at 2126 White Plains Road and robbed that location.
The CitiBank at 1265 Castle Hill Avenue was held-up at gunpoint on January 17. Despite the handgun, this male suspect fled empty handed.
Leaving no bank behind, on January 14, the Chase Bank at 1489 Metropolitan Avenue in Parkchester was robbed of an unknown amount of cash.
On January 10, a woman entered the Chase Bank at 1308 E. Gun Hill Road. Witnesses say the woman claimed she had a bomb, but fled empty handed. The determined woman would return to the same bank on January 12, but once again fled empty-handed.
The year began with an attempted robbery on January 3, at the Chase Bank at 3514 White Plains Road.
Two hours later the Apple Bank at 44 E. 162 Street was robbed by a male suspect, who fled with an undetermined amount of cash.
Meanwhile, two Bronx men were charged on Thursday, June 15, with an October robbery of a Yonkers bank-- with a pellet gun.
Cops say Michael Johnson, 36, of Walton Avenue and his cousin Andre Johnson, 29, of Co-op City, were charged in connection with an October 7 hold-up of the Key Bank, located at 2500 Central Park Avenue.
The suspects in that case fled with an estimated $100,000.
The Johnson cousins are suspected in a half dozen other bank robberies in Yonkers, Nyack and surrounding areas. The pair were being held without bond in White Plains.
Andre Johnson is reportedly cooperating with the FBI, who is assisting local police in the investigation.
Anyone with any information on the Bronx cases are asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stopper's hot line at 1 (800) 577-TIPS, all calls remain confidential.   

Wakefield News: Hope Army will Camp Out at Muller ARC

Wakefield News: Hope Army will Camp Out at Muller ARC: Wakefield Area News By Mary V. Lauro BRONX, NEW YORK, June 25– With rags on their backs, no shoes, starving, my friends, in free...

Hope Army will Camp Out at Muller ARC

Wakefield Area News

By Mary V. Lauro

BRONX, NEW YORK, June 25– With rags on their backs, no shoes, starving, my friends, in freezing weather, even so, George Washington kept his men together. Valley Forge was hell on ice. Who would have thought that from that tattered band would arise the strongest army in the 21st century? And that today, we remember all that suffering with hot dogs and barbecues and fireworks?

Well, that army has contacted our Borough President in regard to the Muller Army Reserve Center at 555 Nereid Avenue, which our Mayor would like to turn into a homeless shelter for 200 single men. We've written enough about it and readers may recall that we recently sent a letter to the Mayor correcting his false assertion that he originally wanted the ARC to house the National Guard stationed in a decrepit annex of the Kingsbridge Armory, but that we somehow dropped the ball so that he had no alternative but to turn it into a homeless shelter. (Incredible how politics destroys truth and honor).
Well, it ain't over yet. The fat lady has not sung. It seems that the Department of the Army (DOA) must investigate the impact environmental issues might have on the end use of the facility.
Those following the issue will recall that in the two studies commissioned by the city the best end use was identified as a “similar use.” What could be a more similar use than turning the facility over to the National Guard? Nonetheless, the last report sponsored by the Mayor does not even mention the National Guard as a possibility. Now, the Army has reversed that. It is definitely considering moving the National Guard into the facility.
We must, however make a case for the National Guard by pointing out the environmental issues that would impact on using it as a homeless shelter. The Army itself recognizes that leakage from the tanks at the Hess Station on the corner opposite the Muller ARC has polluted a stream of the underground water which it calls a "plume." The plume carries in it varying amounts of carcinogenic and teratogenic material. Other environmental possible pollutants given the age of the structure include asbestos, lead paint, radioactive residues and the poly chloride by-phenyls (PCBs) in some plastics.
A response to the Army must be made by July 3 which the League will do. However, the Mayor is not taking this lying down.
His Honor is so intent on a Homeless Shelter that his Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is reviewing/negotiating the terms of agreement between the City and The Doe Fund for the provision of homeless services at the ARC. This means that the city might very well recommend to the Army that the ARC be turned into a homeless shelter. If this should happen, we expect our Borough president to take the City to court as he promised.
While we are pleased that there is still hope, we cannot refrain from complaining. We received the Army's letter on our FAX on Wednesday, June 20, from an anonymous sender who said it was top secret. We called the BP's office for an update on Thursday, June 21 and were sent the Army's letter and accompanying important information. We know CB 12 had all this information for some time. The information was received at the BP's office on June 4! We did more than two weeks elapse before The League and Woodlawn, the two communities that would be most impacted by the fate of the Muller ARC, were notified?


Yankees were no “chickens” as they dominate Mets in Subway Series

(Photo by Gary Quintal)
By Rich Mancuso
BRONX, NEW YORK, June 25– A chicken became a story line Friday night at Citi Field before the New York Mets took the field for the first of three against the cross-town Yankees. Sunday evening, after the Yankees took the finale of their six-game inter league series, they Yankees were not the chickens.
Instead, Robinson Cano hit the go ahead home run for the Yankees in the eighth inning at Citi Field. The Yankees won their fifth straight individual series against the Mets. 6-5, and a chicken joke about the team, initiated by Mets reliever Frank Francisco, became a novelty.
Because the Yankees once again proved they are the better baseball team in New York, a chicken joke to them meant nothing. They took five of six games from the Mets, the first time they have done that since 2009.
“They hit balls out of the ballpark like there’s nothing to it,” said Mets manager Terry Collins who admitted it may have been a mistake not bringing in lefty Tim Brydak to face Cano.
Miguel Batista (1-2) gave up the home run ball, the 16th by Cano leading off the eighth with two strikes. It was hit straight to center, the 15th home run hit by the Yankees against the Mets in the six games. Seven of those long balls were hit at Citi Field the past three games, which accounted for 24 of the Yankees 32 runs.
The Yankees were not chickens in this latest installment of the Subway Series that had some more interest the past few weeks. The Mets have been a better team this season and that also accounted for another sellout at Citi Field, 42,364 the largest crowd for the ballpark that opened in 2009.
And Francisco was placed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday with a strained muscle on his left side. So the chicken initiator, who saved the Mets win Friday night, had no bearing on the outcome of the finale. 
It was supposed to be an anticipated pitcher’s duel. R.A. Dickey of the Mets, without allowing an earned run in 44.2 innings and dominant with an 11-1 record and 2.00 ERA ,who will most likely get the start for the NL all-stars in a few weeks at the midsummer classic.
He surrendered a run in the third inning on a sacrifice fly. He threw a wild pitch in the fifth inning and allowed five runs earned. The streak is over for now.
“I didn’t have a great knuckleball,” commented Dickey. “It was just coming out wobbly a little bit. I kept searching for it,” he said.
The 37-year old helped the Mets overcome a four-run deficit. He got a single off CC Sabathia the Yankees starter in the fifth inning. Sabathia did his part, 9 hits in 5/2-3 innings. But he gave up five runs, one earned.
“My focus was on tonight,” said Dickey who made a point that it was like a playoff atmosphere pitching against the Yankees in a crowded ballpark. “It was nice,” he said about the scoreless streak. “I’m hoping to start another one.”
Ruben Tejada in his first game back from the disabled list went 2-for-4 and drove in two runs, and a single off Cory Wade tied the game in the sixth.  Andres Torres also had two hits and drove in two runs, including a two-out hit that went past Mark Teixeira at first in the same inning.
“Tomorrow is another game,” said Torres who experienced his first stint of games against the Yankees.
And with the chicken quickly disappearing from the scene, there is a realization that the six games, which have been a part of this home and home series, will be a thing of the past.
Next year, with the schedule going more towards more inter league games, the Mets and Yankees cross-town series will be reduced to three games which was the original format when inter league play started in 1997.
“We don’t get caught up taking two of three here,” said Yankees manager Joe Girardi.
He also won’t complain about the series going back to three games next season. Girardi is an advocate for that more balanced schedule and winning games against teams in your division.
The Yankees have won 14 of their last 18 road games, with or without the balanced schedule. Collins won’t mind not seeing the Yankees again, unless of course they should meet in October.
“Not bad for a bunch of chickens,” added the Yankees Nick Swisher who got hold of a Dickey knuckleball and hit his 11th home run to right-center in the Yankees four-run third inning.
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