Cops look for E train thief

Police are searching for a man who has repeatedly struck riders on the E train.

Authorities first reported that on Sunday, December 18, at about 3 a.m., the suspect in question approached an 18-year-old man on a Manhattan-bound E train.

He displayed a knife, forcing the victim to fork up his iPhone. The suspect then fled at the Northern Boulevard subway stop.

He struck again on January 4, this time at about 4 a.m. While riding the E train, the man approached a 20-year-old victim, which had stopped inside the 23rd Street subway station.

The suspect, along with another man, approached the victim and punched him in the face. They removed his wallet, which had a debit card and MetroCard. They also took the victim’s cell phone charger.

Anyone with information in regards to these incidents is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).  The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.

7 train rated best line in annual Straphangers report

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Despite having an entire Facebook community documenting daily woes, 7 train riders apparently have it the best, according to the latest report by the Straphangers Campaign.

The NYPIRG campaign issued its 18th annual “State of the Subways” Report Card last Thursday, and rated the 1, 7 and L trains as best in the system due to their abundant morning and evening rush hour service.

The report noted that the 7 also got props for having less frequent subway car breakdowns than the average line, as well as the highest percentage of clean subway car interiors.

The 5 and A trains were ranked the worst MTA lines.

According to the Straphangers Campaign, the ratings are based on “an extensive review of official transit data on six measures of subway service.” Those measures are: scheduled service, service regularity, breakdown rate, crowding, cleanliness and announcements.

“Passengers on the top lines – such as the 1, 7, and L – hands down get a much better ride for their MetroCard than those on its worst, such as the 5 or A,” said Gene Russianoff, senior attorney for the campaign. “Disparities abound throughout the system.”

The 7 train was rated the best subway line last year as well.

Do you agree with the Straphangers Campaign’s 2016 Report Card? Let us know!

See the entire report here.

7 train rider punched for filming an argument

3640-16-qns-transit-td20-108pct-12-22-16-photoIf an argument or fight broke out on the train and you were at the scene, what would you do?

Many people nowadays would take out their phone and start recording. That’s exactly what one commuter did last Thursday.

But instead of recording an incident, he ended up on the wrong side of an attack.

Police say that on December 22, at approximately 10 p.m., two men were engaged in a dispute on a Flushing-bound 7 train at the 46th Street station.

The victim, a 45-year-old man, began filming the argument from afar. He wasn’t involved in any of the yelling.

But as soon as the unidentified suspect saw the man filming on his cell, he ran and knocked him to the ground.

The victim suffered bruises to his head and right arm, but refused medical attention at the scene.

He then call 911 and remained at the scene.

The unidentified suspect then left the subway.

Take a look at the brief video below and see if you can identify the attacker.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.

CB2 meeting next Thursday

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Community Board 2 is hosting its annual board meeting next Thursday, January 5 at Sunnyside Community Services (43-31 39th Street).

The agenda includes remarks by Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley and Ivy Nguyen, executive director of agency operations for Small Business Services (SBS).

The remarks will be followed by a public comment period, the chairperson’s report, district manager’s report and committee reports.

Staten Island man busted for series of burglaries across Queens

fsg-crime-scene-response-unit-01A 38-year-old Staten Island man is accused of deploying interested tactics to break into six commercial locations across Queens.

According to Queens County District Attorney Richard Brown, Hector Rodriguez of the New Brighton section of Staten Island stole approximately $40,000 in cash, lottery tickets and cigarettes between October 2015 and August 2016.

“The defendant is accused of brazenly burglarizing various businesses by literally breaking into the buildings – creating holes in rooftops and/or walls to get inside,” Brown said in a statement. “The commercial locations – grocery stores and bodegas in various Queens neighborhoods – allegedly had more than $40,000 in cash and merchandise stolen.”

Rodriguez is accused of breaking into businesses in Queens Village, Woodside, Jackson Heights, North Corona and Jamaica.

He is charged, in a 15-count indictment, with five counts of third-degree burglary, one count of petit larceny, four counts of third-degree grand larceny, four counts of third-degree criminal mischief and one count of third-degree attempted burglary. If convicted, he faces up to seven years in prison.

Burglars who targeted Sunnyside Sprint strike again

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They’ve done it again.

The same thieves who robbed the Sprint store in Sunnyside on November 20 have also struck cell phone stores in North Corona and Elmhurst.

Police say the November 20th incident occurred at roughly 12:35 p.m., when two unidentified men entered the Spring store and approached a 22-year-old employee. One of the suspects took out a gun and demanded cash and merchandise.

The employee complied, as the suspects took 45 Apple iPhones and $3,500 in cash.

The next incident took place on Saturday, December 3 at 5:35 p.m. Two unknown individuals entered a T-Mobile store at 86-16 Queens Boulevard in Elmhurst. Again, they took out a gun and demanded everyone to move to the back of the store.

The robbers then removed $600 worth of property. One store employee tried to chase after the suspects, causing one of the thieves to shoot the gun at the employee’s direction. Thankfully, no one was injured.

Three weeks later, they struck again. Two unidentified men entered the Sprint store at 37-50 Junction Boulevard in North Corona at 12:15 p.m., displaying a gun. They forced two employees and two customers to the back of the store, where they bound them with tape.

The suspects then took store merchandise and receipts, including 218 electronic devices such as iPhones, iPads, Samsung phones and tablets. They also grabbed $800 in cash.

The crooks then took $700 in cash from one customer, $400 from another, and $30 from a female employee before running away.

The last robbery occurred on Christmas day at noon. Two men with handguns walked into the MetroPCS at 97-14 Queens Boulevard in Rego Park with handguns. They forced three employees and three customers to the back of the store.

One of the thieves walked to the front of the store to remove all the cash from the register. Another suspect entered the store and took all the cell phones from the displays.

One of the crooks who remained in the back of the store put his gun down momentarily to tie a 56-year-old customer with duct tape. At that moment, the three teenage employees tackled the suspect and subdued him, but he was able to escape into a waiting vehicle with the rest of the suspects.

Below are photos of some of the suspects in question:

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Authorities also shared two videos of the incidents, posted below:

DCA reminds employers about minimum wage hike

The Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) is hitting the streets in Sunnyside tomorrow morning to remind employers about the minimum wage increase.

Tomorrow at 10:30 a.m., DCA Commissioner Lorelei Salas, representatives from the Commission for Human Rights, Small Business Services (SBS) and elected officials will conduct a “Business Education Day” in all five boroughs.

In Sunnyside, they will be at Greenpoint Avenue and 39th Street, right by the B24 bus shelter. Reps will walk toward Queens Boulevard businesses.

The outreach effort is to remind local businesses that the New York State minimum wage goes up for all workers, regardless of status, on December 31, 2016.

Teams will also educate local employers about other workplace and consumer protection and licensing laws that will apply to them.

Self defense, anti-bullying, de-escalation training in Sunnyside

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At the community speak out event hosted by Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer last month, some residents said they wanted to learn how to protect themselves from any danger.

Van Bramer said it was a great idea. Now he’s following through.

His office is hosting a self defense, anti-bullying and de-escalation training session at Sunnyside Community Services on Wednesday, December 14th from 6 to 8 p.m.

The Women’s Initiative for Self-Empowerment (WISE) and Center for Anti-Violence Education will be on hand to teach the public about how to protect yourself and your neighborhoods.

The event is free and open to the public. To RSVP, contact Elana at eehrenberg@council.nyc.gov or call 718-383-9566.

Skillman Avenue Holiday Lighting & Winter Festival

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Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, in partnership with The Skillman Project, Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce and the Sunnyside Post is hosting the 7th annual Skillman Avenue Holiday Lighting and Winter Festival.

The event will run on Saturday, December 3rd from 4 to 8 p.m., while the tree lighting ceremony starts at 6 p.m.

Festivities will take place at the 48th Street Reformed Church, while the festival will be on Skillman between 41st and 43rd streets.

The program includes caroling by local schoolchildren and features warm cider and hot cocoa provide by Aubergine Cafe.

7th Annual food Drive

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Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer is hosting his 7th annual food drive to distribute food to homeless and hungry New Yorkers during the holiday season.

You can donate donate canned foods, infant formula, pasta, rice, grains, peanut butter and other non-perishable items to their district office in Sunnyside (47-01 Queens Boulevard, Suite 205).

“We all must step up to help hungry families in our community,” Van Bramer. “No child should ever have to go to bed hungry.”

Last year, all donated items were given to Borden Avenue Veterans Residence in Long Island City.

Until December 20th, you can also drop off donations to the following locations:

  • Broadway Library (40-20 Broadway)
  • Court Square Library (25-01 Jackson Avenue)
  • Long Island City Library (37-44 21st Street)
  • Ravenswood Senior Center (34-35A 12th Street)
  • Sunnyside Library (43-06 Greenpoint Avenue)
  • Woodside Library (54-22 Skillman Avenue)