Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Health Screenings

BRONX, NEW YORK, January 16- Residents living in and around the Bronx can be screened to reduce their risk of having a stroke or bone fracture. Knights of Columbus will host Life Line Screening on January 28. The site is located at 3243 Ampere Avenue in Bronx. 
Four key points every person needs to know:
Stroke is the third leading cause of death and a leading cause of permanent disability.
Eighty percent of stroke victims had no apparent warning signs prior to their stroke.
Preventive ultrasound screenings can help you avoid a stroke
Screenings are fast, noninvasive, painless, affordable and convenient.
Screenings identify potential cardiovascular conditions such as blocked arteries and irregular heart rhythm, abdominal aortic aneurysms, and hardening of the arteries in the legs, which is a strong predictor of heart disease. A bone density screening to assess osteoporosis risk is also offered and is appropriate for both men and women.
Packages start at $149. All five screenings take 60-90 minutes to complete.  
For more information regarding the screenings or to schedule an appointment, call 1-877-237-1287 or visit our website at  Pre-registration is required.
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Wakefield News: Where the Cops Aren’t

Wakefield News: Where the Cops Aren’t: --> Wakefield Area News By Mary V. Lauro BRONX, NEW YORK, January 16 - The newspapers have been shrieking that last year (2012) mur...

Where the Cops Aren’t

Wakefield Area News
By Mary V. Lauro
BRONX, NEW YORK, January 16- The newspapers have been shrieking that last year (2012) murder in the City shrank to a record low. If we are to believe CompStat figures that is true enough, but it is not true for the 47 Precinct. While we had five less murders than in 2011, at 16, we were still the second highest in murders in the Bronx. We were beat out by the 43rd Precinct which had 18. In regard to murder, the 45th Precinct gets the prize. It had only two murders through 2012.
Close to murder is the category shooting victims. Sorry to say, the 47th again wins a prize. At 59 shooting victims, it ties with the 46th Pct. for highest in the Bronx.
In the rape category, the 47th is still the second highest sharing the spot with the 42 and 46.
Overall, citywide crime has increased. The Mayor thinks it is because thieves are stealing iPhones. We don't. The slight increase in robbery citywide does not translate to iPhone thefts. Whatever the Mayor thinks, robbery in the 47th climbed to 500, an increase over last year of 15.5 percent.
What is truly amazing are the statistics for grand larceny auto otherwise known as car thefts. In every single precinct in the Bronx there was a diminution of car thefts. Even so, who had the highest number of cars stolen? You guessed it. The 47th Precinct at 250.
In felonious assault there seems to be an overall increase both city-wide and Bronx-wide. The 47th increased as well, but maintained third place highest. Keep in mind that there are 12 Precincts in the Bronx. Being third highest means 9 other precincts did better than we did.
In burglary, at 394, the 47th did 4.1 percent better than last year. However it remains the second highest in the Bronx.
Grand larceny seems to have increased throughout the city. Every Bronx Precinct increased. The 47th increased 34 percent, but is on a par with most Bronx Precincts.
We will not deny that when we speak of the low crime rate in the 50th Precinct (Riverdale) there is an element of envy in it. But one must remember that 30 years ago Wakefield easily competed with the 50th Precinct. There was very little crime here, while today it is the second highest in crime sector in the 47th Precinct. The question is what impedes crime?
To a large extent the moral and civic attitudes of its residents is a factor in the amount of crime a community can experience. (If they are good people or wealthy people you will get less crime.) Allied to this is the number of available agents (police) whose presence can inhibit incipient crime. So that two people out of a 100 want to commit robbery. If there is one cop, he can keep an eye on one would-be robber. The other robber can commit the crime with no problem. If there are no cops, then crime rises.
What is interesting about the 50th as well as other areas of wealth is that they don't seem to be bothered by criminals from other communities. One would expect robbers and burglars to go where the wealth is. Instead they travel to communities which are not so wealthy. Now what could cause this strange behavior? Perhaps it is because the wealthy communities received more police presence than the poorer ones?
At this point we get a lot of handwringing. How could we entertain such a thought? Easily. We think the NYPD uses the "epidemic" mindset. In this mode of thinking, an area which is not experiencing the ravages of an epidemic disease is kept healthy by all sorts of means so as not to pollute it with disease. By the same token, all of the assistance the disease-free area receives is assistance not available to the diseased areas.
We want to make very clear that in no way do we fault the 47th's commander or its officers for the poor showing of the 47th in 2012. We identified the problem many years ago, but our pleas and cries have been consistently silenced with false promises. In reality, when one considers the constant crime and the daily calls for police, except for one or two duds, the 47th is overwhelmingly staffed with superheroes and great commanders.
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Thursday, January 10, 2013

Feds Shut Down Bx Drug Gang

Ringleaders Charged with Kidnapping,
Burning the Victim with an Iron
BRONX, NEW YORK, January 10- The FBI and NYPD announced charges against 10 members of a criminal organization based on Wyatt Street in the West Farms section of the Bronx. Nine of the defendants were charged with conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine and heroin. 
The crew’s alleged ringleader, Anibal Ramos, and one of its members, Anibal Soto, were charged in the original, July 2012 indictment with kidnapping, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, and the brandishing of a firearm in connection with, and in furtherance of, the kidnapping. Ramos and Soto are alleged to have kidnapped and tortured an individual, including by burning the victim with an iron. The superseding indictment adds narcotics charges against Ramos and also charges him and three of the new defendants with possessing firearms in connection with, and in furtherance of, the crack cocaine and heroin conspiracy.
All eight of the new defendants charged were taken into custody as part of a coordinated operation involving federal and local law enforcement officers. Ramos, who was arrested in August 2012, and Soto, who was arrested in July 2012, remain detained. All the defendants arrested today will be presented in Manhattan federal court this afternoon.
Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said, “As alleged, for far too long, these defendants were a bloody blight on a Bronx community, contaminating it with poisonous and highly addictive drugs and the guns and brutal violence that are part and parcel of the drug trade. This case demonstrates our commitment to working with our law enforcement partners to identify and prosecute those who engage in this conduct and to expand cases previously charged when we develop new evidence. With the charges we bring today in two separate cases against 19 defendants, the Bronx neighborhoods in which they ran amok are safer places for their residents.”
FBI Assistant Director in Charge George Venizelos, “This case highlights once again the dual threat posed to our communities by the illegal drug trade. The drugs themselves are poison, with life-altering and lethal consequences. And violence almost always comes with the territory. We remain committed to restoring our communities to their law-abiding residents.”
NYPD Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said, “The depraved acts of torture described in the indictment need no further characterization, other than to observe that the nexus between drug trafficking and violence is well-established, and the commitment among police and prosecutors to bring its practitioners to justice is unyielding.”
As alleged in the superseding indictment unsealed and other documents filed in Manhattan federal court:
From at least 2000 through August 31, 2012, Ramos was the leader of a drug crew that operated on Wyatt Street in the Bronx and sold significant street level quantities of crack cocaine and heroin. In addition, members of the drug trafficking organization used firearms, threats of violence, and violence to secure and enforce their drug territory, including the kidnapping and brutal torture committed by Ramos and Soto.
Ramos, Joel Cabrera, William Zacchi, Christopher Hernandez, Michael Aviles, Latrell Riddles, Charitza Quintana, Yasmine, Zelayandia, and Jacqueline Hernandez are charged with conspiring to distribute, and possess with the intent to distribute, crack cocaine and heroin.
Ramos, Aviles, Riddles, and Zelayandia are also charged with possessing firearms in connection with, and in furtherance of, the crack cocaine and heroin conspiracy.
Mr. Bharara praised the outstanding investigative work of the FBI and the NYPD. He added that the investigation is continuing.
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Wakefield News: Second class citizens

Wakefield News: Second class citizens: --> Wakefield Area News By Mary V Lauro   BRONX, NEW YORK, January 10- All of these years we have helped score...

Second class citizens

Wakefield Area News
By Mary V Lauro 
BRONX, NEW YORK, January 10- All of these years we have helped scores of tenants deal with their landlords. Every now and then we realized that the small landlord, the one who owns a two or three-family house cannot be placed in the same category as the apartment building owner. But wait; let's make very clear that not all apartment building landlords are cut from the same cloth. There are many honest and decent landlords in the Bronx and the City who are judged not by their decency, but by the greed and indecent behavior of the less honorable landlords, the biggest of which is the City's own New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA).
For this reason, a certain segment of the population judges all landlords as rich, evil money grabbers. They view the rent they pay as extortion. They have no idea of the small landlord's struggle to pay real estate taxes, water charges, insurance and the cost of repairs. In most cases the landlord chose a two-family house so that the rental income could assist in paying the mortgage.
Apparently, our columns regarding evictions in two and three-family houses have struck a note. We received several calls from Wakefield residents and one from Queens. Essentially besides describing what their errant tenants were doing, the complaints focused on the feeling these small landlords had that they had no rights. Indeed it has often seemed that way.
What can a landlord do if the tenant decides to pay the rent at the end of the month instead of at the beginning? If he laughs at late charges? What can he do if the tenant does not recycle; if he runs the hot water endlessly; if he insists on keeping the hall light on all day; if he gives keys to strangers so that they use his apartment when he is not there; if he thinks they are trashing his apartment; etc.
We checked with Attorney General Schneiderman regarding any rights a landlord may have. Our phone call engendered some confusion. We were transferred to three individuals who could not respond. The fourth said “Of course he has rights. He can evict. A two-family house landlord does not even need a reason if there is no lease. It's called a Holdover Case.” Ah, yes! But that maybe, a costly proposition.
The easiest type of eviction process is for non payment of rent. It is only easy, however, if the tenant agrees to move or does not show up for his court appearance. A great deal depends on the judge too. A single mother holding her baby weeps. “Your honor I promise to look for a job. I'll pay him all the rent I owe him.” Sounds reasonable, except that is what she said twice before, so the landlord loses another two months rent on top of the year he has already lost. It is not easy for him to meet his obligations, but the judge has no time for his tears.
The other type of eviction as the Attorney General's office said requires no reason from the landlord provided there is no lease. The process begins with a notice to the tenant that he must, leave in 30 days or be evicted. If the tenant does not leave in 30 days which is generally the case, a court date is set, but not automatically. The typical landlord acting without an attorney (pro se) bounces back and forth from Housing Court on some quest or another be it the special legal forms that must be used, the court dates, and so on.
The first court date is to have the tenant and landlord come together to try to convince the tenant to leave. But why should he? From the outset of this process, the landlord cannot take rent from the tenant. If he does, it signifies that he is satisfied and will no longer pursue eviction. The tenant will take every opportunity and every guise to hold on to the rent-free apartment. Thus does the small homeowner become a second class citizen.
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Monday, January 7, 2013

Cops Catch ‘Mugger’ Following Dimwit Pic taken from Stolen iPod

Photogenic Felons
More Criminal Masterminds Join Cops’ List of Getting Caught on Camera
By Dan Gesslein
BRONX, NEW YORK, January 7- How did cops catch this criminal mastermind? Maybe it was the photo she took of herself from a stolen iPod.
We all know that if criminals weren’t stupid they wouldn’t get caught, but one suspect made it too easy for cops. Police released photos taken, allegedly by a thief, from the victim’s stolen iPod. The drama began at around 7 p.m. on December 21. A 17-year-old woman was waiting for a bus at Tremont and Crotona Avenues. A person walked up behind and punched her in the head. The attacker took the victim’s handbag and fled. 
Although the victim was able to give a description, cops received an early Christmas present. Turns out the suspect took pictures of herself using the victim’s stolen iPod. 
Police arrested 17-year-old Felecia Cooks over the weekend for the East Tremont mugging. Cops were able to enact an arrest just days after they released photos of Cooks allegedly taken from the iPod stolen in the mugging. 
Another photogenic perp was caught on camera for a Parkchester stickup. Cops released photos of the suspect for a robbery that occurred in the vicinity of Purdy Street and Maple Drive. At around 9 p.m. on December 20, police say two men approached a 17-year-old, displayed a gun and demanded money. The pair snatched the victim’s cellphone and jewelry before fleeing on foot. However, surveillance video from inside a Parkchester building captured one of the suspects.
Cops described the suspects as both black men in their 20s about 180 pounds. One was last seen wearing blue jeans, brown coat and a blue Nautica baseball cap. The second suspect was seen wearing black jeans, blue leather jacket and black hoodie under his jacket.
In another case, police just released surveillance video of a suspect wanted for a Morris Park stickup. At around 6:30 p.m. on December 29, without wearing a mask the suspect walked into a grocery store on Morris Park Avenue and pulled out a silver handgun. Waving the weapon, the crook demanded cash. When the clerk would not move fast enough, the robber went behind the counter and took the cash out of the register. He fled on foot. 
The suspect is described as a black male 40 to 50 years old, 5 foot 8 to 6 foot 2, and weighing between 170 and 200 pounds. 
Another criminal mastermind had his victim come to him. Cops say the suspect posted an ad on Craigslist selling a laptop. On December 26, an interested buyer went to 1275 Lafayette Avenue to meet the seller. Instead of a laptop the victim got a face full of mace. The crook made off with $350 in cash but not before a photo was taken of him. 
In yet another robbery, cops released photos of a suspect in a Bedford Park robbery who did not bother to try and hide his identity while pretending to be a cop. The suspect headed a crew of four other men who all wore ski masks. However, the leader did not and his image was caught on surveillance video.
At around 5 a.m. on December 9, the suspect entered the building on Orloff Avenue and let his four accomplices in. He then proceeded to knock on an apartment door claiming to be a police officer. When the tenant opened the door, the crew rushed inside. The thieves tied up the occupants and made off with property. The phony cop is described as a Hispanic male, 30 to 40 years old and 200 pounds. He was seen wearing blue jeans and a white jacket. The four other suspects who wore ski masks are believed to be Hispanic.
Anyone with information is urged to call CRIMESTOPPERS at (800) 577-TIPS. The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers Website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or texting their tips to 274637(CRIMES) then enter TIP577.
All calls are confidential.
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Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Winners & Losers 2012

By Robert Press
BRONX, NEW YORK, January 2- Losers in 2012. I am going to start with the real losers of 2012, and save the politicians for last. The biggest losers were the people who were affected by Hurricane Sandy, because there were so many of them. Some are still without homes that were either ruined or are uninhabitable, and have lost almost everything they had. Many other people citywide and beyond were losers when the transit system relied upon every day went down. Tunnels as well as many lower Manhattan buildings were flooded, and power was lost for more than a week in many areas. New York City lost umpteen millions of dollars in revenue, and the lasting damage of Hurricane Sandy to the tune of over $60 million in federal aid to the tri-state area is still being felt.
The biggest loser in sports is a toss up between the National Hockey League and Lance Armstrong. While the Yankees may have won their division they were losers in the playoffs. However even bigger losers were the Boston Red Sox who finished in last place in the division. The Red Sox team was partly dismantled during the past season, and one has to wonder how the 2013 Yankee team will look like let alone perform. Staying in baseball the 2012 Mets were losers, and their prospects for 2013 look worse since losing their number one “Cy Young Award” winning pitcher. The New Jersey Jets were losers, because it didn't matter who was at quarterback since all three were trounced by the opposing defense.
Turning to politics the biggest loser has to be New York State Senate Democrats. While the official election results are still unknown two months later, unofficially Democrats had either a 33-30 or 32-31 lead after election day in the state senate. So how will Republican State Senator Dean Skellows be sworn in as Senate Majority Leader? While the names may change Democrats who were incarcerated in 2012 was former Brooklyn State Senator Carl Kruger. Democrats who were convicted in 2012 and will be sent to jail in 2013 are former Bronx State Senator Pedro Espada Jr., and former Bronx Councilman Larry Seabrook. Others like former Queens State Senator Shirley Huntley (indicted three weeks before her primary), and former Bronx Assemblywoman Naomi Rivera (involved in several investigation for alleged wrongdoing) lost their primary elections in 2012.
Winners in 2012. We have to start at the top, and say President Barrack Obama has to be the biggest winner on his re-election as president. Staying in politics locally newly elected Assemblymen Mark Gjonaj (80 A.D.) and Luis Sepulveda (87 A.D.) were big winners. Gjonaj for beating an incumbent who was endorsed by almost every Bronx elected official and the Bronx Democratic County organization, not to mention being the daughter of the former Bronx Democratic County Leader. Sepulveda for his huge victory over the former Chief of Staff to the previous assemblyman. In the special election to replace convicted former Councilman Larry Seabrook was new Councilman Andy King who brings much promise to the area he now represents. The people of the Bronx were winners when current Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. announced that he will be running for re-election in 2013.
Other winners on the short list in 2012 include NYC Police Commissioner Ray Kelly for the continued low levels of crime in the city. Derek Jeter for the better than average season he had in 2012, as he was the spark plug that drove the hitting engine. The Washington Nationals baseball team, who in two short years went from a last place division team to the best record in the 2012 baseball season. The final winners are all the people who helped, and are still helping in the recovery of Hurricane Sandy.
While you may think I left out a name you can e-mail it to me. Next week I will have things to look forward to in 2013 like a Democratic mayor being elected. Don't forget to check my blog at for updates, late arriving news, or items that may not have made it into this column.
If you have any comments about this column or would like to have an event listed or covered in this column or on my blog you can e-mail us at or call 718-644-4199 Mr. Robert Press.
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