Union Square Shutdown: Blame the Buzzcocks Fan

Police determined contents were not dangerous

By Michael Clancy
|  Friday, May 14, 2010  |  Updated 3:18 PM EDT
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All Clear After Union Square Bomb Scare

Blame it on the Buzzcocks fan.  

The NYPD evacuated part of an apartment building and blocked off some streets near Union Square Thursday night after a report of a suspicious vehicle with gas cans in the back seat. Nothing threatening was found. It was just another disruption in a world where "if you see something, say something" has become a life-saving mantra.

But what made this instance somewhat odd was that officials interrupted the Buzzcocks concert at the nearby Irving Plaza in the hopes of finding the owner of the 1991 Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera parked in front of a Con Edison utility building, raising suspicions and getting the bomb squad involved.

Turns out it was a Buzzcocks fan that caused the misunderstanding. The owner of beat-up Ciera that had its windows blown-out by the NYPD bomb squad,  59-year-old landscaper Walter Malinowski said the show was great as he exited 13th Precinct.

"The Buzzcocks!" he yelled to a Daily News reporter who presumably asked why he was parked in the neighborhood. "Concert was great!"

The Norward, N.J.-resident told police he had the gas cans in his car because he mows lawns for his family.

In what may be a punk rock first, Pete Shelley interrupted "ESP" to read aloud a note handed to him by someone waiting in the wings.  The Buzzcocks front-man looked shellshocked as someone urged him to read the note.  And so he did, asking that the owner of the four-door Olds Cutlass.

At the end of the show, the management of the Filmore at Irving Plaza left up a note asking for the owner to come forward.

No word on whether Malinowski finished the show.  The Buzzcocks did.  And it was brilliant.
       

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