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Apr 15, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Blind Bronx students exhibit found object art pieces


A group of blind Bronx students proved you don’t need perfect vision to produce eye-catching works of art.


Students at the Lavelle School for the Blind showcased their work after spending the year making art under the guidance of a teacher who’s also sightless.


Ashley Morisseau, a student at Lavelle since 2013, said she never believed being born blind would prevent her from making art.


“Some people think that … people like us, that we can’t do that much, we can’t create art or play music or do anything,” said Morisseau, 20, who’s been attending Lavelle since 2013.


“But guess what? We can.”


A crowd of students and teachers packed into the school’s gym, oohed and ahhed as they browsed the tables lined with whimsical art pieces.


Many of the students, who have differing levels of vision impairment, gushed over the use of everyday objects — colanders, soup cans and seatbelts — combined with plasters and paints to create the works of art.


“A big part of what I teach is problem solving,” said art instructor Jessica Jones, 48, who has been working at the Williamsbridge school for the past 12 years.


“I think that the production and the experience of art is a tool for teaching.”


Jones, who began as an art teacher at Public School 9 in 1997, lost her sight at the age of 32. Although she took some time off to go to rehab, she was determined to continue her passion.


“You have to learn how to adapt in everything because people aren’t going to do it for you,” Jones said


Switching schools and disclosing her limited vision proved difficult in her job search. She finally caught a big break when the Lavelle School signed her for a summer session in 2006.


“I’m teaching these kids that you can do anything that you set your mind to. Unfortunately that’s not really the message that the public in the United States gives to people with disabilities,” she said.


“Look at what we can do, don’t underestimate us.”

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Apr 14, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Suspect in rape, robbery of Bronx teacher held without bail


A Brooklyn man accused of raping and robbing a young teacher in the elevator of her building was ordered held without bail early Saturday.


Lynneke Burris, 30, grabbed the woman in the entrance to her building about 1 a.m. Thursday, and put her in a headlock, police charged.


The 22-year-old woman passed out and woke moments later as Burris was raping her, according to cops.


After the rape, cops said Burris stole the woman’s wallet and made her give him her PIN before he fled.


The victim was taken to Lincoln Hospital.


According to the woman’s mother, the distraught teacher pounded at the apartment door after the attack.


“She said, ‘Help me mommy, help me,’” the victim’s mother said. “‘He raped me mommy.’”


Burris took 0 from the victim’s bank account, according to cops.


The suspect was caught in Concourse Village soon after the rape, when a cop recognized him from a surveillance photo.


Burris — who already has a rape and 20 other arrests on his record — was charged with rape in the first degree and robbery in the second degree.


The victim had lived in the apartment building since she was a child; her mother said she started teaching in September, and was looking to further her education.


Burris is being held at Rikers Island until his next court date April 18. 

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Apr 14, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Brawl sparks deadly stabbing in Bronx apartment lobby


A 28-year-old man was fatally stabbed during a fight in the lobby of a Bronx apartment building late Friday.


The victim, whose name was not immediately released, was stabbed multiple times in the thigh in the lobby of a building on Sedgwick Ave. near W. 179 St. in Marble Hill at about 11 p.m., police said.


Medics rushed the man to St. Barnabas Hospital, where he died.


Police made no immediate arrests.

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Apr 14, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Bronx house fire kills 94-year-old woman


A Bronx blaze claimed the life of an elderly woman Friday, police said.


Grace Carter, 94, was found on her bed inside her home on Ely Ave., near Pitman Ave. in Wakefield at 3:30 p.m.


She was rushed to Jacobi Medical Center, where she died, cops said.


The nonagenarian’s home health aid managed to escape the flames, police sources said.


Fire marshals are investigating what sparked the blaze.

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Apr 13, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Driver who told boss he ‘would oil her down’ can’t avoid charges



In a blistering opinion issued Tuesday, an appellate court threw out an arbitrator’s decision that let bus driver and union official Tony Aiken avoid a firing because his lewd remarks did not “rise to the level” of sexual harassment.


Judge Sallie Manzanet-Daniels, who wrote the decision for the five-judge panel, lambasted the arbitrator decision as “irrational” and for taking a “’blame the victim’ mentality” that “belies the realities of workplace sexual harassment.”


The arbitrator’s decision, Manzanet-Daniels wrote, “emboldens future harassers to engage in pernicious misconduct, knowing that they are likely to receive little more than a slap on the wrist as punishment.”


Aiken, who had served as a high-level Transport Workers Union Local 100 official, allegedly made sexually explicit remarks to bus dispatcher Tulani Melendez in 2012 at the Kingsbridge depot.

Senate hopeful Mayer again called out for harass claims inaction


Aiken allegedly called her “sexy” and “sugar daddy.”


“Isn’t she fine? What would you do if you had a woman like her at home?” Aiken allegedly remarked loudly as bus operators reported to Melendez for assignments. “I wouldn’t leave the house. I would stay in bed all day. I would oil her down.”


After Melendez sent a 13-page complaint to NYC Transit’s Equal Employment Opportunity office the investigation found that that Aiken made unwelcome sexual comments to Melendez. The Transit Authority charged that Aiken created a hostile work environment for Melendez and other female employees.


But an arbitrator initially shielded Aiken from discipline because he was a paid union official. That decision was eventually tossed by the appellate court.

Karl Lagerfeld says models who feel harassed should be nuns


The case went back to arbitration, where Aiken got a 10-day suspension and an order to take a course on sexual harassment training — a “meager” punishment, the judge wrote Tuesday.


The arbitrator, Stephen O’Beirne, agreed with factual findings in the Transit Authority’s investigation but still rebuffed the agency’s efforts to fire Aiken. O’Beirne blamed Melendez, as a supervisor, for failing to report the harassment sooner, according to the decision.


O’Beirne, the arbitrator, declined to comment Friday.


Arthur Schwartz, representing the union and Aiken, who is no longer a union official, vowed to take the case to the state’s high court, the Court of Appeals.

Female TV hosts describe the firings of Matt Lauer, Charlie Rose


He also suggested retaliation by Melendez, arguing she filed the sexual harassment allegations after Aiken complained about her job performance.


“The Appellate Division decision runs contrary to the law that should have been applied to an arbitration award,” Schwartz said.


NYC Transit will keep pushing for termination in a new arbitration the court ordered.


“The arbitrator’s decision had prevented the Transit Authority from terminating an employee who was found to have committed sexual harassment, and instead imposed a penalty of only a 10-day suspension,” MTA spokesman Shams Tarek said in a statement. “As the Court recognized in its ruling, it is critical that the Transit Authority be permitted to effectively enforce policies that protect its employees against workplace sexual harassment.”

Companies must give workers anti-sexual harassment training

Tags:
labor unions
sexual harassment

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Apr 13, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Sicko arrested after raping, robbing Bronx teacher


A sick predator who raped and robbed a teacher in her Bronx apartment building Thursday has been caught, police said.


The stranger grabbed the 23-year-old victim in the entrance to her apartment building on Park Ave. in Concourse Village and put her into a headlock about 1 a.m., cops said.


The woman passed out. When she woke up a few moments later, her attacker was raping her, cops said.


When he was done, the suspect took her cash and wallet and demanded she give him her PIN before running off down the stairs.

Ex-NYPD cop admits to raping teen relatives in Orange County


The creep withdrew 0 from the victim’s account, police sources said.


Medics rushed the woman to Lincoln Hospital.


A police officer spotted the attacker and arrested him Thursday. The cop recognized the man from a surveillance photo. Charges against the suspect — whose name was not released — are pending.


The victim had just returned from a date with her boyfriend when she was attacked on the elevator, authorities said.


Her mother recalled her panicked daughter’s cries as she pounded at their apartment door.


“She said, ‘Help me mommy, help me,’” the mother said. “‘He raped me, mommy.’ She was devastated.


“She said, ‘It’s my fault.’ She felt guilty for what happened.”


The victim is a high school English teacher, according to her mother.


The mother said she moved her family to their current Bronx apartment when her daughter was a toddler.


The teacher started her job in September, and had plans to take a break to further her education.


She said her daughter looked much different after the attack than she did in recent graduation photos.


“I think he punched her,” the mother said of her brute who told her daughter not to call the police.


“She’s scared because the person who attacked her, he knows she lives here,” her mom said.


“He has her ID, and then he comes to find her and kill her. She’s scared.”

With John Annese

Tags:
sex crimes
new york rapes
new york robberies
concourse village

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Apr 12, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: De Blasio sending NYPD neighborhood policing program into subways


Subways aren’t typically a place for small talk with strangers, but Mayor de Blasio is hoping New Yorkers will strike up a relationship with some of their fellow commuters: cops.


Hizzoner announced Thursday that he’s sending the city’s neighborhood policing program underground, assigning officers to patrol transit sectors the way they might a neighborhood — and posting names and e-mail addresses for the officers on station advertisements.


“For all of who you have spent a lot of your lives in the subway, the notion that you’re going to know the names of the officers on your line, that if you have concerns or something you see you’re worried about, or a question you want answered about safety, you could literally walk up to them because now you know their names, or you could e-mail them because their e-mail is there, they’re going to respond to you personally” de Blasio said at the Barclays Center stop in Brooklyn. “We’ve never had anything like that.”


The program will start with Transit District 212 in the Bronx, which covers stations along the 2 and 5 lines, and Transit District 30 in Brooklyn, encompassing stations along the 2, 3, 4, 5, A, C, B, D, Q, F, G, N and R lines.

NYPD will expand neighborhood policing program to 40 precincts


While de Blasio painted a quaint vision of the subway — “If you ride the subway you know you get to know a lot of your fellow riders,” he said — they are more transient than neighborhoods, where people may be more likely to get to know cops on the beat. But Chief of Patrol Terence Monahan said riders will be seeing the same officers, and their pictures on posters, in the same stations everyday, growing a relationship.


“When there’s an issue, there’s someone you can reach out to,” he said. “You have your cop to reach out to.”


De Blasio said people will be intrigued by posters with the names, pictures and e-mail addresses of officers, and then will see those same officers on their trains, sparking dialogue.


“If you see the same officer 10 times and you have something you’re concerned about, I think you know New Yorkers, they’re not going to be shy about it,” he said.

NYPD to test community policing in Manhattan, Rockaway


The officers will receive training with how to deal with homeless people — who can remain in the subway but, like all riders, are prohibited from lying down. As for fare evasion, a thorny subject for de Blasio as he pushes back against funding half-priced MetroCards for low-income people, the officers will have discretion, Monahan said.


“People have to pay to get on the subways. We don’t want people getting on for free, it’s a quality of life issue,” Monahan said, standing in front of a line of uniformed officers. “But in everything we do, the main focus of neighborhood policing, is giving these men and women back here discretion to handle their area.”

Tags:
bill de blasio
nypd
mta

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Apr 12, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Sicko rapes and robs Bronx woman as she enters her apartment


A sick predator raped and robbed a 23-year-old Bronx woman as she entered her apartment building early Thursday, police said.


The stranger grabbed the victim in the entrance to her apartment building on Park Ave. in Concourse Village and put her into a headlock about 1 a.m., cops said.


The woman passed out. When she woke up a few moments later, her attacker was raping her, cops said.


When he was done, the suspect took her cash and wallet and demanded she give him her PIN number before running off.

Ex-NYPD cop admits to raping teen relatives in Orange County


The creep withdrew money from the card a short time later, police sources said.


Medics rushed the woman to Lincoln Hospital.


There were no immediate arrests.

Tags:
sex crimes
new york rapes
new york robberies
concourse village

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Apr 10, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: FDNY paramedic molested patient because ‘Dominican women are hot’


The lewd on-duty FDNY paramedic arrested for molesting a patient he was transporting to a Bronx hospital targeted his victim because she was Dominican — and boasted about his manhood, authorities said Tuesday.


“Dominican women are hot,” Karel Delgado, 36, told his 43-year-old patient Sunday during the harrowing ride to Montefiore Medical Center, according to court papers.


“You have such a big p—-, you must be able to take it hard.”


Delgado, a 10-year veteran of the FDNY, is facing sex abuse, criminal sex act, forcible touching and official misconduct charges.

Medic cuffed for groping woman, trying to force her into oral sex


The woman had called 911 because she was feeling ill, police said.


When she was put in the ambulance, the sicko medic pounced on her and began groping her breasts and genitals.


“Dominican women love men with big penises like me,” he said, according to the court papers. “This will be over quick.”


He then grabbed her by the hair, pulled her down to the ambulance floor and forced her to perform oral sex on him, court papers show.


Delgado’s victim reported the attack to hospital staffers.


Police arrested Delgado on Monday. A judge ordered him held on ,000 bail.


Delgado is currently on Rikers Island, awaiting his court date, according to the city Department of Corrections website.


The FDNY has suspended Delgado for 30 days without pay, a department spokeswoman said.


Attempts to reach Delgado’s attorney were unsuccessful Tuesday. An email to his union for comment was not immediately returned. 

Tags:
fdny
sex crimes
rikers island

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Apr 10, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Man dies at hospital after jumping off Bronx-Whitestone Bridge


A 44-year-old motorist Tuesday morning took a 135-foot death leap into the East River from the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge, police said.


The man, whose name wasn’t immediately released, had driven onto the span, stopped his car and then jumped over the bridge’s railing just before 7 a.m. at the height of the rush hour, multiple witnesses told police.


Harbor units pulled the man from the chilly water, bringing him to a wharf off of Malba Drive in Queens, where an FDNY/EMS ambulance was waiting.


Medics rushed him to Flushing Hospital Medical Center, where he died a short time later.


No note was found on the victim, or in his car, police said.

Tags:
fdny

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Apr 10, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: New schools chief vows to help fix city’s student homeless crisis


New Chancellor Richard Carranza said he’s ready to tackle the crisis of student homelessness that’s engulfing the city schools, using lessons he learned in Houston after Hurricane Harvey.


Carranza, 51, who served as superintendent of the Houston Independent School District until March 31, explained his position to reporters at an unrelated tour of Concourse Village Elementary School in the South Bronx, his first visit to a city school.


“Homelessness is very dear to my heart,” he said. “Having recently come from Houston and seen the devastation of Hurricane Harvey … I am very sensitive to the issue of homelessness and what that does in terms of insecurity, academic insecurity for our students.”


A record 111,562 New York City students were homeless or living in temporary housing in the 2016-17 school year, up from 66,931 in the 2009-10 school year.

Kids from poorest neighborhoods left out of city’s elite schools


That’s about one in 10 of the city’s 1.1 million school kids who are currently living in temporary housing.


By contrast, the Houston Independent School District saw a drop in enrollment of roughly 1,900 students in 2017 versus 2016 when Harvey hit last summer. About 214,000 students are now enrolled in Houston schools.


Mayor de Blasio has been criticized for failing to adequately address the issue of homeless students in city schools, who lag their housed peers on a number of academic indicators.


Carranza, who started April 2 as chancellor, also told reporters he’s looking to tackle integration in the city schools, which are among the most segregated in the country.

Kids from poorest neighborhoods left out of city’s elite schools


“Like any large urban system, there’s a myriad of things that we should be looking at,” Carranza said. “I’m very, very interested in the opportunity/achievement gap. I’m very much looking into the issues of segregation in our schools.”


Carranza additionally said he will meet soon with Police Commissioner James O’Neill to discuss school-safety programs after the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.


“We’ve also put on the list these issues about securing doors, when to secure doors, about egress and ingress,” Carranza said.


After his Concourse Village visit, Carranza met up with de Blasio for a photo-op at a pre-K program at Bronx Public School 25.

Incoming schools boss making his presence felt at Education Dept.


“The chancellor will tell you he didn’t come from a privileged family, and his opportunities were created by public education,” de Blasio said of his new schools boss.


“Richard Carranza got that chance because of public education, and today is the leader of the biggest school system in America.”

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Apr 10, 2018
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BRONX NEWS: Bronx house fire kills one person


A house fire in the Bronx killed one person late Monday.


The blaze broke out at about 11:30 p.m., in a three-story townhouse on Freeman St. near Prospect Ave. in Foxhurst, an FDNY spokeswoman said.


Firefighters found one victim dead inside, the spokeswoman said. She did not identify the person.


Neighbor Jose Ayala said the victim was a man he knew as “R,” who lived on the first floor of the house.


“I just saw them pull him out and they put him right there,” Ayala said. “He looked burnt. His legs were burnt.”


The victim’s body remained covered with a sheet as firefighters worked early Tuesday.


“I feel bad. That’s my friend,” Ayala said. “He lived here for as long as I lived here.”


Firefighters brought the blaze under control at about midnight.


The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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