<![CDATA[NBC New York - Local News]]>Copyright 2017http://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/local http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/4NY_Horizontal.jpg NBC New York http://www.nbcnewyork.comen-usWed, 18 Oct 2017 01:51:21 -0400Wed, 18 Oct 2017 01:51:21 -0400NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Believe it or Not: NYC Isn't the 'Rattiest City' in the US]]> Wed, 18 Oct 2017 00:28:22 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/rats_philly.jpg

Believe it or not New York City is not the city with the worst rat problem in the country.

According to a new list, Chicago is named the “rattiest city” in the U.S. NYC finished second and Los Angeles is third. It’s the third-straight year the Windy City topped the list.

The rankings were compiled by the pest control company “Orkin.” The "Top 50 Rattiest Cities” report is based on the number of rodent treatments they performed in each city over the last year.

San Francisco and Washington D.C. round out the top five on the list. Buffalo, Albany and Rochester also cracked the top 50.

<![CDATA[Sleeping Woman Sexually Attacked in Her Own Bed in NYC: Cops]]> Wed, 18 Oct 2017 01:17:25 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/ATTACKED+IN+BED+BX.jpg

A woman who was sleeping was sexually attacked in her own bed in the Bronx, police say.

Officials say around 10:30 Saturday night, the woman was sound asleep in her bed on Halsey Street in Parkchester when an unknown man got into her apartment. The woman was quickly startled out of her sleep and police said the man attacked her.

The 24-year-old woman eventually pushed the man off of her and he then ran away, the NYPD said. It wasn’t clear how he got inside her apartment. Police said the woman did not know the man. 

She called authorities who say she was taken to an area hospital, where she was treated and then released.

Police released surveillance footage (above) of a man who they say is a person of interest.

Investigators urge witnesses to call Crime Stoppers with tips that could lead to an arrest.

Photo Credit: NYPD
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<![CDATA[$10K for Info in Deadly Home Invasion Case: NYPD]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 23:47:13 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/suspect+bk+home+invasion+deadly.jpg

Police have released photos of a person of interest in the violent Brooklyn home invasion that left a 91-year-old man dead and his 100-year-old wife in the hospital. 

It comes the same day as the NYPD is also announced a $10,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the case. 

The 100-year-old Ethlin Brumley Thompson was able to escape after two masked suspects broke into her home in Bedford-Stuyvesant last week and pulled pillowcases over her and her husband's heads and tied them up. Ethlin got away to call 911, and when officers arrived, the woman met them and said her husband was still in the home. 

"The officers entered her apartment and found her 91-year-old husband tied up and lying on the floor," NYPD Deputy Chief Michael Kemper said at a press conference. "He was unresponsive."

Although the officers performed CPR, Waldiman Thompson was pronounced dead after he arrived at Interfaith Medical Center. Medical examiners later told DNAinfo that the man had heart disease and high blood pressure and the stress of the break-in caused him to have a heart attack. 

Ethlin Brumley was taken to the same hospital for injuries to her legs and for observation.

Authorities said the burglars ransacked the home -- but it’s not clear if anything was taken.

Neighbors say the couple lived on the street for decades, and they were often seen sitting in their garden, waving to passersby. 

"They're very nice, respectable people," said Sharon Lyons. "I hope they find the people responsible for this."

Ethlin and Wadiman sat side by side in front of their brownstone every day, giving compliments to neighbors -- together, always together, in the words of The New York Times

"All they had was each other," their 34-year-old tenant Anil Lopez told the Times. He said he called them "Mom" and "Pops" -- and they called each other "honey." 

On Tuesday, Bed-Stuy residents told News 4 that they didn't recognize the man. 

"I don't know who he is, he doesn't look familiar to me at all," said one resident.

Anyone with information about the home invasion should call NYPD Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

Photo Credit: NYPD
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<![CDATA[87-Year-Old Faces Eviction Over Grandson Who Visits Daily]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 22:23:34 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/NJ_Grandmother_Facing_Eviction_Over_Grandson_Visits.jpg

An 87-year-old woman says she faces eviction because her grandson visits her New Jersey apartment daily to bring her food and get her mail.

Rose Dimaria, who was recently treated for breast cancer and suffers from an irregular heartbeat, has lived in a Lodi Public Housing Authority home for 67 years. That's why she said she was confused when she received an eviction threat in the mail claiming she violated her lease by letting an 'unauthorized visitor' – her grandson, 40-year-old Gregory Ciccione – come too frequently.

"He brings me coffee every morning, and a roll or a doughnut," Dimaria said. "It’s nice to have company – I don’t understand what is wrong with that."

According to a letter sent to police by the housing authority administrators, Ciccione has previously served 3 years for mail fraud with his former business.

Ciccione admitted to his crime but insists he hasn’t tampered with his grandmother’s mail.

"Taking care of an elder should not be something that I am forced to stop doing or be bullied into not doing because of past history," he said.

Instead, Ciccione said he felt the letter was an elaborate scheme to spite him, not his grandmother.

"It’s absolutely directed at me,” he told News 4. "There’s outside family members who I no longer interact with, and it’s been a tumultuous several years between my divorce and who took sides over several cases. In their attack on me, it’s affecting my grandmother."

The Lodi Public Housing Authority says its priority is the health, safety, and well-being of all tenants.

Dimaria will have a hearing before any action is taken.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[Cops Corral Loose Bull in NYC Park]]> Wed, 18 Oct 2017 01:40:23 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/CHOPPER+1155AM+-+13022918_WNBC_000000018252663.jpg

Police have finally corraled an elusive bull calf at a Brooklyn park. 

The NYPD says the bovine escapee was first spotted on the loose late Tuesday morning, before it made its way into a park near Prospect Park Expressway. 

Despite several attempts by police to corner the cow on the field, the animal managed to keep sprinting off. 

A crowd of onlookers outside the field swelled in a matter of under an hour, Chopper 4 shows. The cow wandered around, staring back at the people and occasionally breaking into a jog. At one point, police tried to corner the cow by putting up soccer nets but the cow just ran through them, knocking down the goal posts.  

"You don't see this every day in Brooklyn, a bull in Prospect Park," said Brandon Simmons. "It's just crazy." 

The NYC Parks Department got in on the bovine hype, tweeting jokingly, "Hey, has anyone seen a cow?" 

Finally, at around 1:15 p.m., the NYPD managed to tranquilize the bull calf and put it into a Mounted Unit horse trailer. It was taken to Animal Care Centers of NYC with the help of SPCA, and will be cared for until a new home is found, the NYPD later tweeted. 

It's not clear where the animal came from. Police believe it may have escaped from a building on 16th Street and Fourth Avenue, though they're still trying to confirm that.

"Hopefully he has a second chance at life," said Jody Cook-Tesoriero, one of the bystanders. 

Earlier this year, another New York City cow made national headlines when it escaped a Queens slaughterhouse and led police on a wild, hours-long chase through the neighborhood. 

And in 2016, former "Daily Show" host Jon Stewart rescued a bull that escaped another slaughterhouse in Queens before being lassoed and tranquilized by police. 

The bull died hours later. 

Photo Credit: NBC 4 NY
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<![CDATA[2 Bystanders, 2 Others Shot in Brooklyn Drive-By: Officials]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 23:47:51 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/police-generic-nyc-1011.jpg

Four people, including at least two bystanders, were wounded in a drive-by shooting in Brooklyn on Tuesday night, according to fire officials.

Firefighters were called to the scene on Rogers Avenue in Prospect-Lefferts Gardens about 8 p.m., according to authorities.

When they arrived on scene, crews found four people with gunshot wounds. Fire officials said that all of the victims are expected to survive their injuries.

Witnesses told News 4 that one of the victims was a barber, and police said another victim might have been a building superintendent. They said that the men ran for help after being hit by the gunfire. 

Those who were wounded were between 15 and 46 years old. 

It was not clear what sparked the drive-by shooting. It also remains to be seen if the shootings were connected to a pair of others in the borough Tuesday night. 

No arrests have been made.

<![CDATA[Vet Claims to Put Down Family Dog, Keeps it Alive for Months]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 23:35:01 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/dog-euthanized-1017.jpg

A New Jersey woman said a veterinarian's office claimed to euthanize her family's sick dog, but instead kept her beloved pet alive for another five months without notifying her. 

Keri Levy told NJ.com that the Howell veterinarian's office even called her to say Caesar -- a 15-year-old miniature pinscher -- was "at peace" and that she could pick up his collar after the alleged procedure in May. But after a call from a tipster at the vet's office, she found out that someone at the office had taken Caesar home, never even providing the pup with any care for its condition.

"Awful, just awful," Levy told NJ.com "Imagine having to tell a 9-year-old and a 10-year-old this. My 9-year-old was like, 'When can I see him?'"

Levy said Monday that she had made the difficult decision to put Caesar down in May after the vet told her that the pup had Cushing's disease, an endocrine ailment that is typically caused by tumors. She said it was too painful to be there for the procedure, so she decided to wait until afterward to pick up her pet's collar. 

Five months later, Levy said in a now-deleted Facebook post that she got a tip from someone at the clinic -- which recently changed ownership -- that Caesar may still be alive. 

She said she confronted the practice, asking for a cremation receipt or any other records showing that Caesar had been put down. When the owner of the clinic -- who had bought the practice from the vet who originally claimed to have put down Cesar -- didn't have any answers, she called police and the New Jersey SPCA. 

She wrote that the original vet clinic owner called her a short time later, telling her that Caesar was still alive and living with a woman who used to work at the office. That vet didn't respond to requests seeking comment from NJ.com.

The woman brought the dog back to the vet's office, and Levy wrote that the pup was in much worse condition than when she brought him in to be euthanized five months earlier.

"His bones are deteriorated- and his body is absorbing the muscle tissue," she wrote. "He smells from a skin condition. He is blind in one eye and almost the other has a large growth on it. He has several masses on his body... he suffered prior from Cushing-he hasn’t had any meds and most likely had/has some form of cancer."

She added, "no treatment for him, no medical care at all."

Levy said that once she was reunited with Caesar, she had to go through the same painful conversation with her new vet about putting the dog down; the animal was actually euthanized that same day. 

"We now have to relive losing our little guy and have to explain the unexplainable to our children," she wrote. "Truly heartbreaking."

She added, "Rip little buddy we love you and we are so sorry you had to suffer the last few months."

Photo Credit: Provided by Keri Levy]]>
<![CDATA[NYC Diner Waitress Befriends Elderly Widow, Steals $470K]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 16:10:27 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-861825262.jpg

A New York City diner waitress stole nearly a half-million dollars from an 84-year-old widow who frequented the restaurant and counted the waitress as a friend, prosecutors say. 

Alicia P. Legall, 46, of Flatlands, Brooklyn, befriended a regular customer at the local diner where she worked, and from 2012 through 2016, gained access to the woman's personal information, according to prosecutors.

"This defendant allegedly took advantage of an elderly and vulnerable widow," said Brooklyn Acting District Attorney Eric Gonzalez. "She spent many years gaining the victim's trust only to betray it."

Prosecutors say the elderly woman gave Legall permission to use her credit cards for small purchases at local drugstores and supermarkets -- but Legall allegedly cashed more than 75 checks she wrote to herself or withdrew cash from the victim's bank account for a total of more than $200,000. 

The waitress also rang up purchases on the victim's credit cards, including $73,000 in cash advances and $204,000 at Apple, JetBlue, Victoria's Secret, New York Racing Authority buffets and bars, Harrah's in Atlantic City, hotels and clubs in Miami and other parts of Florida, and at the Belmont Racetrack.

Legall also allegedly opened accounts in the victim's name on horse-betting websites. 

Legall was arraigned in Brooklyn Supreme Court Tuesday on grand larceny, forgery and identity theft charges. She was ordered held on $2.5 million bail.

She's set to return to court on Dec. 6. She faces up to five to 15 years in prison if convicted.

Attorney information for the woman wasn't immediately available. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Blaze at Historic NJ Site Forces Schools to Close for Day]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 17:21:59 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/north+plainfield+fire+2+chopper+4.jpg

Part of an abandoned nursing home complex in New Jersey has been left in smoldering ruins after a fire tore through the building overnight, spreading so quickly it took firefighters from multiple departments hours to gain control of the blaze. 

Flames flared up at the former Villa Maria Extended Care Facility on Somerset Street in North Plainfield sometime around 3:30 a.m. Tuesday, with the flames quickly engulfing the building and forcing dozens of fire crews to respond to the location. 

The fire was under control by around 7 a.m., though crews remained on the scene into the afternoon putting out hot spots. No injuries were immediately reported.

Nearby Stony Brook, Harrison, North Plainfield middle and high schools had to close just after 9:30 a.m. because of smoky conditions, which were exacerbating asthma for some students, officials say. 

Investigators are looking into the possibility that the fire was intentionally set. The property caretaker, who lives in a separate building on the property, told News 4 he hard a loud car pull out at around 2 a.m., about an hour and a half before the fire started. 

It's the second fire to hit the historic site since the summer. That July blaze was contained to an 80-foot section that contained an infirmary and was brought under control in less than a half-hour, according to MyCentralJersey.com.  

"We've had vandals go through it for whatever reasons, possibly it was set," said North Plainfield Fire Chief William Eaton. 

Villa Maria was a tuberculosis sanatorium that was open from 1889 to the beginning of World War I, according to MyCentralJersey.com. It was later used as a long-term nursing facility before it closed in 2002. 

Photo Credit: NBC 4 NY]]>
<![CDATA[Yankees Fans Pumped for Game 4]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 19:13:10 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/Yankees_Fans_Pumped_for_Game_4.jpg

Yankees fans turned out to the Bronx en masse in hopes that the Yankees would even the ALCS. John Chandler reports.

<![CDATA[I-Team Report Delays Murder Trial]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 22:48:17 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/I_Team_Report_Delays_Murder_Trial.jpg

The murder trial for a man who claims he was railroaded by prosecutors has been delayed after an I-Team investigation. Sarah Wallace reports.

<![CDATA[Twitter Users Unload on NJ Transit Over Cancellations]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 19:07:43 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/Twitter_Users_Unload_on_NJ_Transit_Over_Cancellations.jpg

NJ Transit riders took to social media in a fury over repeated cancellations. Brian Thompson reports.

<![CDATA[Protesters Kneel Outside NFL Owners Meeting]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 19:06:54 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/Protesters_Kneel_Outside_NFL_Owners_Meeting.jpg

Protesters kneeled outside the NFL owners' meeting in Manhattan on Tuesday. Ida Siegal reports.

<![CDATA[AG Investigating Red Light Violations By School Buses]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 19:03:41 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/AG_Investigating_Red_Light_Violations_By_School_Buses.jpg

The New York Attorney General's Office is investigating a series of red light violations by school buses. Pei-Sze Cheng reports.

<![CDATA[Protests During School Stabbing Case]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 16:47:26 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/Protests_During_School_Stabbing_Case.jpg

There were protests on both sides at the case of a young man who allegedly took a knife to school and stabbed fellow students. Erica Byfield reports.

<![CDATA[2 Stabbed on Manhattan's West Side: FDNY]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 16:34:59 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/police+tape.PNG

Two people were reportedly stabbed on the West Side of Manhattan Tuesday afternoon. 

Fire officials say they responded to a call of a stabbing on West 55th Street, near Eighth Avenue, just after 2 p.m.

Two victims have been transported to New York Hospital. Their conditions were not immediately clear. 

<![CDATA[NYPD Cop Accused of Exposing Himself to 2 Little Girls]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 17:55:05 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/2705-17+45Pct+Public+Lewd+Photo.jpg

A NYPD officer was arrested Tuesday morning for allegedly exposing himself to two young girls -- while wearing a "Nightmare Before Christmas" t-shirt -- and then asking for directions to McDonald's. 

Adam Fridson, 43, faces six charges, including two counts of lewdness, the NYPD said. 

Last Wednesday afternoon, Fridson allegedly approached two girls on East Tremont Avenue in the Bronx and exposed himself. He then allegedly asked the two girls, ages 7 and 12, how to get to the nearest McDonald's before getting back in his car and driving away. 

Surveillance video showed the suspect wearing a black T-shirt with a white logo of Jack Skellington, the main character from "The Nightmare Before Christmas."

Attorney information for the man was not immediately available. 

<![CDATA[You May Start Seeing Driverless Cars in NYC Next Year]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 17:14:03 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/CNBC+GM+SELF+DRIVING+CARS+MN+VO+-+00002428_WNBC_000000018252161.jpg

Driverless cars could begin hitting the streets of New York City as soon as early 2018. 

General Motors and Cruise Automation have applied to begin testing self-driving cars in Manhattan, where mapping has already started in a geofenced area thanks to legislation recently signed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. 

The planned testing would be the first time the so-called Level 4 autonomous vehicles will be tested in the state. The DMV and state police will work with Cruise and GM to make sure all testing meets relevant safety, vehicle and insurance requirements, the governor's office says. 

Kyle Vogt, CEO of Cruise Automation, says testing in New York will accelerate the timeline to deploy self-driving cars at scale.

"New York City is one of the most densely populated places in the world and provides new opportunities to expose our software at unusual situations, which means we can improve our software at a much faster rate," he said. 

Cuomo said he was proud to be working with GM and Cruise on the pilot program. 

"The spirit of innovation is what defines New York, and we are positioned on the forefront of this emerging industry that has the potential to be the next great technological advance that moves our economy and moves us forward," he said in a statement. 

Self-driving cars have been demonstrated before on New York streets: in September, Cadillac deployeds its first coast-to-coast hands-free drive that included New York City roads. 

An October 2016 essay in New York magazine exploring the potential cultural, political and economic impacts of the driverless car posited that "since human error accounts for more than 90 perecent of car accidents, each year driverless cars have the potential to save millions of lives. Fewer accidents means fewer traffic jams, and less traffic means less pollution."

<![CDATA[6 Hurt When Brooklyn Brownstone's Roof Caves In]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 19:17:30 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/Park+Place+Roof+Collapse.png

Six construction workers were hurt when part of a building collapsed in Brooklyn Tuesday morning, fire officials said. 

The roof of a brownstone townhouse on Park Place in Crown Heights caved in just before 10 a.m., Chopper 4 video showed. Authorities said the roof came down as workers were placing a load of cinder blocks. 

Neighbor Gloria Spencer said she heard the concrete cinder blocks falling from the roof. 

"It was like a boom," she said. 

Some of the workers at the home appeared to be trapped after the collapse, accoridng to Norman  Harrison. He said he called 911 when he realized they were in danger. 

"I hear some guy screaming, and I see a man trying to get out of the rubble," he recounted.

Four of the six injured workers were in serious condition. FDNY Deputy Chief Stacy Scanlon say some had broken bones, cuts, bumps and bruises. 

Investigators say the construction site had a C-Joist -- a metal barrier between floors -- and the weight of the falling cinder knocked down the metal, too. 

"It was too much weight in that area to be supported, and it collapsed into the basement," said FDNY Chief Dwayne Cartwright. 

A city Department of Buildings representative told News 4 the contractor will face a host of citations after Tuesday's collapse.

City officials also said the apartment buildings on either side of the brownstone had to be evacuated -- leaving 10 people across four families out of their homes for the night. 

Photo Credit: @NYPDBklynNorth / Twitter]]>
<![CDATA[MTA Worker Helps Woman Give Birth on Subway Platform]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 22:57:42 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/generic+subway+entra+vg.jpg

Just when you thought you’ve seen it all on the subway.

The MTA worker was about halfway through her shift when she helped a woman give birth on the platform of the 4/5/6 at the Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall subway platform, according to officials.

Madeline Ramos, who cleans the station, heard the mother Shuping Chen around 3 a.m. Monday and helped her lie down on the floor, according to officials. Less than a minute later, Ramos caught the baby.

Police sources told the New York Post, which first reported the birth, the mother and her baby boy are at New York-Presbyterian Hospital and are in good condition.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[Firefighter Gives Unconscious Pup CPR, Saves Its Life]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 23:40:15 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/fire-cpr-dog-1016.jpg

A firefighter saved a Long Island dog’s life Monday night by giving the unconscious pup CPR.

Footage from the scene in East Meadow shows a firefighter hunched over on the ground resuscitating the animal after a blaze at a firefighter’s house at about 6:30 p.m.

Authorities said the dog, an Airedale terrier, came to and has survived, but another dog died in the blaze.

No people were injured in the fire, and the home’s owner wasn’t home when it broke out.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Photo Credit: News 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[Ebay Collectibles Seller Gets Charged Twice for Same Refund]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 08:50:04 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/BAQUERO+EBAY+PAYPAL+SALE+DOUBLE+DEBIT+PKG+-+00000921_WNBC_00000.jpg

A Bronx man had no trouble selling collectible movie figures on eBay, and he didn't take issue when the items were returned -- but when he got charged twice for the same refund, he decided to contact the Better Get Baquero consumer investigative team. 

Barry Feirstein and his son Jared both collect and sell collectible figures, and last November, he sold a set of seven Star Wars figures for $89.95. He shipped them to the buyer, wrapping each one in bubble wrap and then placing them in a box filled with styrofoam pellets.

"They were mint when they went out," said Feirstein.

But the buyer complained the items were damaged in transit, and shipped them back for a refund.

"I didn't have enough money in my PayPal account at the time, so eBay took it out of my Visa, my secondary payment method," said Fierstein.

He didn't mind that, but seven months later, in July, Fierstein got a note from PayPal telling him his account was debited to repay eBay. 

Fierstein asked eBay why the $89.95 refund was being processed twice. 

"I've gotten nowhere with eBay, and no matter how many emails I send -- and I can show you communications -- no matter how many voice messages I leave, it gets nowhere," he said. 

When BGB reached out to eBay on Fierstein's behalf, eBay acknowledged that a mistake was made on their end. They apologized to Fierstein and issued a refund of $89.95 -- and an additional credit for the same amount as a courtesy. eBay says instances like that are rare, and they always strive to do the right thing for their customers. 

As for the eBay money back guarantee, it usually doesn't cover items damaged during shipment. You can purchase insurance for the shipping, and in this case, the seller hadn't bought insurance but was willing to offer the refund. He just wasn't willing to be charged twice for the same refund. 

Reach Better Get Baquero at 1-866-NEWS-4 or long onto nbcnewyork.com/gethelp

Photo Credit: NBC 4 NY]]>
<![CDATA[New List Ranks NYC as the Best City for Vegans, Vegetarians]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 07:23:40 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/cenas-ligeras-dieta-nutricion-7.jpg

Looking for a good place to grab a meat-less bite to eat? Look no further than right here at home.

New York City is ranked the best city in the country for vegetarian and vegans, according to a new report.

The WalletHub report gives NYC a total score of 67.29, with Portland, Oregon and Orlando rounding out the top three. Jersey City and Newark are the only other cities in the tri-state to crack the top 100.

The report ranks NYC as the No. 1 city with the highest percent of restaurants serving vegetarian options and No. 4 in vegan options. Sorry, New Jersey residents -- the report puts Newark at dead last in vegetarian options and second to last for vegans.

NYC also has the most salad shops and juice and smoothie bars per capita than any other city on the list.

Newark and Jersey City sit at the bottom of the vegetable nurseries per capita, which is the only category NYC doesn’t crack the top 5 in.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock]]>
<![CDATA[Shooter on a Scooter Wounds Woman Outside NYC Hotel: Sources]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 23:20:53 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/scooter-shooter-1016.jpg

A man on a tiny scooter shot and wounded a woman as she got out of a cab on Manhattan's Lower East Side early Sunday, law enforcement sources told News 4 New York. 

The 26-year-old woman was getting out of a yellow taxi on Rivington Street just before 5 a.m. Sunday with four friends when she heard several shots ring out, according to the sources.

The quartet walked a short distance, sources said, and the woman realized that she was bleeding from the shoulder.

She then ran into a Comfort Inn, and a worker there called 911. She was taken to Bellevue Hospital and is in stable condition. 

Authorities later identified the gunman as a man riding an electric scooter; he rode off after firing the weapon. Footage captured from around the scene shows a man thought to be the gunman riding a miniature scooter on the sidewalk. 

Sources said that the woman appears to be an innocent bystander.

Bodega clerk Nur Hossain told News 4 that he dove for cover inside his store when he heard the gunfire. Later, residents said they found two bullet holses in a nearby gate.

"I got scared," he said. "I didn't know what it was. The third (gunshot) I felt like someone was shooting and I ran into the store."

Anyone with information about the gunman should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

Photo Credit: NYPD]]>
<![CDATA[Students Walk Out Over Teacher's 'Speak American' Video]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 23:06:28 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/cliffside-park-diptych.jpg

Nearly 100 students walked out of a New Jersey high school Monday morning to protest a teacher seen telling Spanish-speaking students to "speak American" during class, despite the principal's warning that they would be disciplined. 

The students came out chanting "C.P. United" -- referring to their high school, Cliffside Park High School, as they walked out of fourth period Monday. An earlier walkout during second period saw only about two dozen students leave the school.

"I love this school to death but something like this is unacceptable," said sophomore Patrick Martinez. 

"She disrespected an entire community and we want an apology," student Janelle Andrickson said about the teacher. 

Sixty-seven percent of students at Cliffside Park High School self-identify as people of color, and more than 40 languages are spoken there. 

In the original video recorded by a student, the teacher at Cliffside Park High School can be heard saying, "Men and women are fighting, they’re not fighting for your right to speak Spanish. They’re fighting for your right to speak American."

The video, which was posted on Snapchat and other social media networks and has been viewed more than 9,000 times, shows students getting up from their desks and leaving the classroom in apparent disgust.

"You’re being racist, I know how to speak English," said one student. "Goodbye. Goodbye."

The video does not show what happened before the exchange, but other students at the high school told News 4 that the teacher repeatedly told two students to stop whispering to one another in Spanish.

Students said the teacher -- whose name has not been revealed -- had previously confronted students for speaking Spanish during and in between classes.

"School is supposed to be a save environment for children to learn, not a place where you feel attacked," said freshman Herbert Rodriguez. 

"It wasn't fair what she said, and we need to fight for our rights," said Krissia Villareal. 

A post on Twitter indicated students planned a walkout during fourth period Monday, saying: "CPHS will be protesting for our rights to speak and represent any of our cultures. bring your country's flag, shirt, jersey or anything to represent where you're from. #stopracism."

Students say the Cliffside Park principal warned over the loudspeaker that anyone who walked out of school would be disciplined. Then, just after 11:30 a.m., someone pulled the fire alarm and 1,100 students walked out of the school 

Cliffside Park High School administrators have not commented on what disciplinary action students will face, but it was discussed at a Cliffside Park School Board meeting Monday night. 

Some parents came to school earlier Monday to find out for themselves. 

"I'm concerned about the kids," said Mario Valladares. "What's going to happen to the kids protesting? They have the right to do it as Latinos."  

The school district did not comment on the video, which was first reported by the Daily Voice. But students said the principal addressed the video in an assembly on Friday. Others online, meanwhile, defended the teacher as a good person and good teacher.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[Man Sexually Attacked Sleeping Straphangers: Police]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 06:29:35 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/generic+subway+entra+vg.jpg

Police say they have charged a homeless man with sexually attacking two sleeping subway riders in the same morning over the weekend.

Michael Baskerville, 28, was arrested at the 241st Street stop in Wakefield after police say they searched the train and found him allegedly touching a man’s groin over his pants.

The NYPD says early Saturday a man came running off an uptown 5 train in the Bronx where he told police he woke up to a man performing oral sex on him. Officials say he told police the suspect was still on the train and was wearing a hoodie.

That is when officers began to search the train and found the man, allegedly Baskerville, who was then arrested.

Police say they woke up the second sleeping victim and asked if he knew the suspect, but he said he didn’t. Officials said they then asked if he was missing anything and the victim said his iPhone, headphones and wallet were gone.

Baskerville was charged with criminal sex act and robbery, according to police.

The first victim was taken to an area hospital, where he was treated and released. The second victim did not go to the hospital, according to police. 

Authorities said he has two prior arrests. It wasn’t immediately clear if he has an attorney who could comment on the allegations against him.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[NYC Teacher Wins 'Oscars of Teaching' Award, $25,000]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 22:50:23 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/NYC_Teacher_Wins_Nationwide_Award.jpg

While this wasn’t for her work on a film, a Bronx science teacher won an award that educators say is on par with an Academy Award.

Metropolitan Soundview High teacher Aja Brown was stunned to find out she was one of 45 teachers nationally to receive a Milken Award -- also known as 'the Oscars of Teaching' -- when she walked into raucous cheers during a surprise school assembly.

“I had no idea – I would have done my hair if I knew,” she said.

The Milken Award -- which teachers can only be nominated for -- honors educators for their excellence, and Brown was recognized for her efforts in creating a new science curriculum for grades 6-12.

To her ninth grade students in her living environment class, the award came as no surprise. 

"When I heard Ms. Brown won I was like, 'Oh, that’s one of my favorite teachers,'" said Jahmari Nesbeth, 14. "I was so excited for her."

Aniya Maldonado, 14, added, "I've been here only a short amount of time, but out of all my teachers, she sticks out to me."

Besides national recognition, the Milken Award comes with another perk – a $25,000 unrestricted cash prize. That means Brown will be able to spend it any way she likes.

“I can’t think about it right now, I didn’t expect it and so I didn’t have any plans for it. It’ll be put to good use,” Brown said.

<![CDATA[Senior Home Power Outage Leaves Person Trapped in Elevator]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 23:17:52 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/power-outage-1016.jpg

A person was trapped inside an elevator after an assisted living facility lost power Monday night, leaving dozens of residents without electricity for lights and medical equipment for nearly two hours.

Witnesses told News 4 they could hear the person trapped in the elevator yelling for help not long after the lights went out at the 19-story facility in Cliffside Park in an episode that left tenants and their families on edge.

“I checked all the floors and the elevator shaft because I heard screaming,” said Tony Pol, a resident and retired U.S. Marines sergeant.

Pol and other residents said that firefighters were able to free the tenant shortly after they arrived on scene.

But afterward, they waited with bated breath for power to be restored; one resident’s daughter said she decided to bring her 85-year-old mother home rather than risk another outage.

“She lives on the 19th floor, so she cannot even go upstairs,” she said. “All her medications are in her apartment.”

There were no injuries reported in the outage, authorities said. Power was restored to the building by about 8 p.m. Monday.

Photo Credit: News 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[NYC Looking to Hire Emergency Snow Removal Workers]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 20:58:01 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/snow+shovel+maine+company.jpg

Looking to make a couple bucks this winter? The New York City Department of Sanitation may have a job for you.

New York City on Monday put out its yearly call for emergency snow laborers to remove snow and ice from bus stops, crosswalks, fire hydrants, step streets and other areas throughout the city. 

Workers who qualify can make $15 per hour for 40 hours shoveling snow, with overtime pay coming to $22.50 per hour. Applicants have to be 18 years old, eligible to work in the United States and capable of performing manual labor. 

To sign up, interested workers should go to a city garage with two small self portrait photos, two forms of ID and a social security card or a Tax ID number. 

For more information, visit the city's snow removal website.

<![CDATA[Happening Today: NFL, McCain, Wildfires, Drug Czar, Me Too]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 06:50:17 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/cms971.jpg

Get the top headlines of the day in your morning briefing from NBC 4 New York, Monday through Friday. Sign up for our newsletter here.

Goodell, Union, Players to Meet on Social Issues and Anthem

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, owners of each team, representatives of the players' union and players themselves will meet Tuesday to discuss ways to "move from protest to progress." Among the topics will be enhancing their platforms for speaking out on social issues, and the league's policy that suggests but does not mandate players standing for the national anthem. There is a quiet mandate, though, for those discussions: figuring out how to get the attention back on those social issues, not how they are being publicized. And getting the attention back on football. Goodell emphasized the need for productive dialogue among the owners and players when he sent a memo to the teams last week. He also invited players' union chief DeMaurice Smith and a group of players to attend the regularly scheduled meetings.

As Crews Gain Ground, Some Fire Victims Return Home

With the winds dying down, fire crews gained ground as they battled the deadly wildfires that have devastated California wine country and other parts of the state over the past week, and thousands of people got the all-clear to return home. While the danger from the deadliest, most destructive cluster of blazes in California history was far from over, the smoky skies started to clear in some places. People were being allowed to go back home in areas no longer in harm's way, and the number of those under evacuation orders was down from nearly 100,000 to 40,000. Many began to take the first steps toward rebuilding their lives. The blazes have wiped out some 5,700 structures and been blamed for at least 40 deaths — 22 in Sonoma County, eight in Mendocino County, six in Napa County and four in Yuba County. A contract firefighter was also killed when the water tanker they were driving crashed in Napa County.

John McCain Warns of “Half-Baked” Nationalism During Speech

When U.S. Sen. John McCain was a younger man, once or twice he was tasked with carrying Joe Biden's luggage. On Monday, after Biden, the former U.S. vice president, awarded McCain with the National Constitution Center's Liberty Medal, McCain was sure to let everyone know he hadn't forgotten. "I've resented it ever since," McCain said on the lawn of the Philadelphia museum as he accepted the award for his lifetime of sacrifice and service to the country. Biden, along with a host of academics, politicians and business people, recalled McCain's more than two decades of military service, his time in a prisoner of war camp in Hanoi, Vietnam, and his long career as a statesman. But of all the accomplishments of the six-term Republican senator from Arizona, Biden quibbled with just one story.

Trump Raises Possibility of Withdrawing Drug Czar Nominee

President Trump has raised the possibility of withdrawing his nomination of Republican Rep. Tom Marino to be the nation's drug czar following reports that the lawmaker played a key role in passing a bill weakening federal authority to stop companies from distributing opioids. Trump told reporters at a Rose Garden news conference that he will look at reports by The Washington Post and CBS News "very closely," adding: "If I think it's 1 percent negative to doing what we want to do, I will make a change." The Post and CBS' "60 Minutes" reported on the 2016 law, which weakened the Drug Enforcement Administration's authority to stop companies from distributing opioids. Marino, in his fourth term representing northeastern Pennsylvania, played a key role in the law along with a handful of other Republicans. Trump called Marino "a good man," but said, somewhat ominously, "We're going to be looking into Tom." Democrats called on Trump to withdraw Marino's nomination.

#MeToo Sparks Viral Women's Movement Against Sexual Abuse

The #MeToo social media campaign has exploded across social media, empowering women to come together in solidarity and to share their stories of sexual abuse and harassment without shame. Actress Alyssa Milano posted a tweet and ignited the social media movement. Milano's "Charmed" co-star Rose McGowan is one of more than 40 women who have accused movie executive Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment, abuse or rape. Weinstein has denied any allegations of non-consensual sex. According to Facebook, "4.7 million people around the world have engaged in the 'Me Too' conversation on Facebook in solidarity with victims of sexual assault and sexual harassment." In less than 24 hours, there were more than 500,000 tweets and more than 12 million Facebook posts, comments and reactions on content that included #MeToo. Also, more than 45 percent of people in the United States are friends with someone who has already made a "Me Too" post, according to Facebook.

Photo Credit: CQ-Roll Call,Inc.]]>
<![CDATA[79-Year-Old Man Heartbroken After 'Best Friend,' Pup Stolen]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 17:33:33 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/stolen+dog1.jpg

A 79-year-old Queens man who had just come home from a hospital stay went for a walk to his local supermarket and returned home to find his beloved dog, a pet that had been his best friend for eight years, had apparently been stolen, along with her pup, according to a relative and animal advocates. 

It's not clear why Jose Melendez, of Far Rockaway, had been hospitalized, but his son said the dog was stolen the same day he came home, on Saturday. And Melendez's daughter says he's heartbroken. 

The soon to be 8-year-old dog, a possible Yorkie/Maltese or Yorkie/Poodle mix named Perrita, is about 20 pounds and has a stub for a tail with a noticeable bump on it. She has light brown eyes, pink and brown markings on the roof of her mouth and had recently been groomed. 

Perrita's 4-month-old pup, a light brown dog named Teddy, was also taken. 

The family is working on obtaining surveillance video, according to a representative from a pet adoption organization.

Photo Credit: Handout]]>
<![CDATA[Car Slams into Harlem Building, Injuring 3: FDNY]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 16:29:22 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/SPEC+CAR+INTO+BUILDING+191617+Peter+Gerber+-+01000116_WNBC_0000.jpg

Three people were hurt when an out-of-control car veered onto a Harlem sidewalk and slammed into a storefront Monday, fire officials say. 

A car crashed into the building on the 2000 block of Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard at about 2:30 p.m., injuring three people, including the driver of the vehicle, the FDNY said.

At least one other vehicle was seen slammed into a nearby storefront, though it's not clear how it ended up there. 

The victims were taken to Lincoln Hospital in serious but stable condition.

It's not clear what caused the crash. 

Photo Credit: NBC 4 NY]]>
<![CDATA[LIRR Resumes Between Atlantic Terminal, Jamaica]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 17:22:08 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/lirr+generic.jpg

Long Island Rail Road service has been restored between Atlantic Terminal in Brooklyn and Jamaica, Queens, after signal problems suspended service as the evening commute was getting underway. 

Commuters should expect residual delays and cancellations, however, the MTA says. 

NYCTransit subway is still cross-honoring via the 2 and 3 lines at Atlanic Terminal and Penn Station. 

Earlier Monday, the subway had its own share of signal problems, among other troubles. The A, B, C, D, E, F, G and M lines were all affected, creating an epic commute nightmare for subway riders. 

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Minister's Son Claims DA Railroading Him in NYC Murder Case]]> Tue, 17 Oct 2017 17:05:03 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/neale+item.jpg

A minister’s son claims he is being railroaded in a Queens murder case and is unable to properly defend himself because the district attorney's office hasn’t turned over crucial evidence against him. The DA’s office says it has given over “whatever materials we are legally required to disclose.”

The case of 29-year-old Ajaya Neale raises an issue that has critics demanding changes in New York’s discovery law, which some have labeled the “blindfold law.” 

Neale is accused of gunning down alleged gang member Joel Rashko Jr. in Roy Wilkins park in Jamaica in May 2014. He denies involvement.

“I’m taking the fall for something I didn’t do,” Neale told the I-Team in an exclusive interview. 

There were questions about the prosecution’s case from the start. According to Neale’s attorney, Victor Knapp, two witnesses in a lineup originally picked out different suspects. Knapp said one was then “cued” by a detective to go closer to the glass for another look. 

A judge set $100,000 bail for Neale, which is unusual in a murder case. The DA’s office acknowledged that Neale’s DNA did not match evidence found from two hats recovered at the crime scene and that there was no other forensic evidence. 

A private investigator hired by the Neale family, Manuel Gomez, located two witnesses who claimed in statements that an alleged gang member, Omar Bryan, confessed to them that he was the shooter. Bryan, who appeared at a recent court hearing, denied any involvement in the murder and declined to speak to the I-Team. Judge Kenneth Holder ruled that Bryan's statements were unreliable and not admissible at trial. 

As of Monday, the DA’s office had not turned over police reports, witness statements or 911 calls, frustrating Neale’s defense team a day before his trial was scheduled to start. 

"The deck is stacked against me. Any time I try to present evidence proving my innocence, it gets shot down,” Neale said. 

The DA’s office said it has fully complied with the disclosure law. 

New York is one of 10 states where prosecutors can wait until just before trial to share evidence. Tim Rountree, the attorney-in-charge of the Legal Aid Society of Queens, complained that current New York law on “discovery” gives prosecutors an unfair advantage. 

“Document dumping is real," Rountree said. "It’s a constant problem trying to get early discovery.” 

He said his attorneys sometimes get documents when they’re in the middle of picking a jury -- and that buried in the documents is often “exculpatory” evidence helpful to the defendant. 

The Legal Aid Society is leading a coalition trying to get the discovery, or "blindfold," law changed. 

Meanwhile, Gomez, the family's private investigator, said he may have found a prosecution witness who could become a star witness for the defense. 

In an affidavit and videotaped statement, Erika King told Gomez she was in the park at the time of the murder and was “steered” by detectives to select Neale in a photo array. 

“I was told that the killer was in the lineup,” she said. “I immediately searched the bottom row for a familiar face. I also picked two other males that I selected. I told detectives I wasn’t 100 percent sure.” 

King said she signed off on the photo of Neale even though she wasn’t comfortable, and was then threatened by the assistant district attorney.

“I was told that I could have a warrant sent for my arrest if I didn’t testify," King said. "I think it’s wrong that I’m being victimized and almost forced to testify.” 

Both sides are scheduled to be in court Tuesday. A spokesman for the DA's office said it does not preview its case prior to trial.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[NY Chiropractor Accused -- Again -- of Patient Sex Abuse]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 11:57:29 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/Douglas+Dukofsky.jpg

A Long Island chiropractor has been arrested, apparently for at least the second time in the last four and a half years, for allegedly inappropriately touching a patient during a routine exam. 

Douglas Dukofsky, 48, allegedly touched the 42-year-old patient at Valley Stream Chiropractic Wellness Center on Roosevelt Avenue on Friday. He was arrested Monday after an investigation on a charge of sexual abuse. 

Attorney information for him wasn't immediately available. This apparently isn't the first time he's faced such a charge. 

LIHerald.com reports Dukofsky was accused of forcibly touching a 21-year-old patient at the same center in 2013. Dukofsky denied wrongdoing at the time; the outcome of that case wasn't immediately clear. 

According to the wellness center's website, Dukofsky developed Structural Restoration, a technique the site describes as a "groundbreaking method of restoring overall health and functioning." 

Dukofsky graduated from Stony Brook University and Life University College of Chiropractic, according to his bio.

Photo Credit: Handout]]>
<![CDATA[NYPD Investigating 2 Weinstein Sex Assault Claims: Source]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 20:32:29 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-687397020.jpg

The NYPD is investigating two credible allegations of sexual assault made against Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein, a senior law enforcement official with direct knowledge of the matter tells NBC News. 

The official noted that the two allegations currently under investigation are different from a 2015 NYPD investigation that was ultimately not prosecuted by the Manhattan district attorney. 

The two allegations date back over 10 years, the official says. While these accusations may be credible, the official noted that it does not necessarily mean that they may be actionable regarding possible criminal charges.

One of the allegations made to the NYPD was outlined in last week's New Yorker article, the official says.

In addition, the NYPD has received three calls alleging inappropriate or unseemly behavior by Weinstein outside of the NYPD's jurisdiction. Those calls have been referred to the appropriate agencies in those jurisdictions as appropriate, the official says.

However, the official noted that the allegations were about unseemly behavior and not necessarily criminal behavior.

A message was left with Weinstein's attorney in Los Angeles. 

The NYPD said last week they were taking a fresh look into sex assault allegations against Weinstein and trying to determine whether there were any additional complaints against Weinstein.

Photo Credit: Andreas Rentz/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[14 Hurt, 1 Critically, in Roaring NYC Apartment Fire: FDNY]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 18:35:45 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/CREAG+APT+BUILDING+FIRE+BK+LIVE+FEED+600AM+-+06044225_WNBC_0000.jpg

A roaring, three-alarm fire broke out inside a Brooklyn apartment building early Monday, injuring at least 14 people, one critically, the FDNY says.

Fire officials say the fire began in a closet on the second floor of the building on 49th Street near 12th Avenue in Borough Park at about 4:30 a.m., quickly spreading up to the third and fourth floors. It appeared to be the result of a malfunctioning permanently installed gas heater.

Flames were doused for more than an hour before crews declared the blaze under control. Officials said there was no working smoke alarm in the apartment. 

At least 14 people are hurt, one of whom was in critical condition, according to Deputy Chief Peter Leicht. A woman was trapped inside a bedroom, where firefighters got to her and pulled her to safety, he said. 

Nine civilians are in stable condition and were able to escape to the roof, where firefighters got them down. Leicht said some children suffered injuries. 

Four firefighters suffered minor injuries, fire officials said. 

Officials warned of traffic delays in the area and told people who live nearby to close their windows because of the smokey conditions the fire created. 

The Department of Buildings issued a violation for obstructing the fire escape with a religious shed known as a Sukkah, which had been put in place for the Jewish holiday Sukkot. The DOB said it prevented egress. 

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York
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<![CDATA[Attacker Shoves Man Pushing Wheelchair, Helps Him Up: NYPD]]> Mon, 16 Oct 2017 23:07:43 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/elderly+assault+suspect1.jpg

A 77-year-old man was knocked over ifn a Bronx attack that put him in the hospital with broken bones and serious bleeding, police say.

The NYPD says the beating was sparked by some sort of argument around 7 a.m. Sunday in Allerton, however, they didn’t know exactly what was said between the two.

Officials said the suspect, in his 20s, walked up to the 77-year-old as he pushed his wheelchair and said some words to him. A brief time later, the suspect pushed the elderly victim to the ground so severely it broke pelvis, police said.

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The suspect then picked the victim up and put him back into his wheelchair before he wheeled himself away, according to authorities.

The victim was taken to an area hospital to be treated for his broken and pelvis as well as internal bleeding.

Anyone with information on the suspect should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

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Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York / NYPD
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