Volume 22, Number 20 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | September 25 - October 1, 2009
Brooklyn Bridge swim death
An N.Y.P.D. Harbor Unit pulled Richard Harley, 59, of San Rafael, Calif., a participant in the Sept. 12 annual swim in the East River under the Brooklyn Bridge, from the middle of the river after he appeared to be in trouble soon after the beginning of the event. The Harbor Unit brought Harley, an experienced competitive distance swimmer, to Pier 16 in the South St. Seaport at 10:10 a.m. and an Emergency Medical Service team took him to New York Downtown Hospital where he was declared dead at 11:10 a.m.
A cab driver hailed by two men at Lafayette and Grand Sts. at 12:35 a.m. Sun., Sept. 20, was pepper sprayed and robbed of his money and cell phone earpiece by the would-be passengers, police said. The driver, however, recovered enough to see his two assailants get into another cab and followed them to 14th St. at Eight Ave. where they fled down the subway entrance. The victim flagged down a passing police car and the suspects, Marlon Cole, 18, of Brooklyn, and Justin John, 16, of Queens were arrested on the subway platform. They were held pending a Sept. 25 court appearance on charges of first- and second-degree robbery and criminal possession of a weapon — the can of pepper spray, according to a spokesperson for the Manhattan district attorney.
Hudson Sq. break-in
A burglar who forced open the front door of an apartment on Charlton St. near Varick St. sometime after 7 p.m. Sat., Sept. 12 when the residents were away, made off with tools valued at more than $800, including a drill, a staple gun and an assortment of screws, police said.
Assault case sealed
Police arrested a suspect on Fri., Sept 18 in the Sept. 7 beating of an off-duty firefighter at the Staten Island Ferry terminal but the case was closed and sealed on Sept. 22, according to a spokesperson for the Manhattan District Attorney.
The victim, Matthew Duggan, 34, assigned to Engine 15 near the South St. Seaport, got into an argument with two men and a woman who laughed at his girlfriend when she tripped and fell in front of the terminal around 1:30 a.m. The incident turned into a fight in which the victim sustained serious head injuries. He was taken to New York Downtown Hospital in critical condition but he improved to stable condition last week. It was not known who struck the first blow in the fight and the District Attorney’s office would not comment on the reasons for the closing of the case. However, sealing cases frequently indicates insufficient evidence to prosecute.
— Albert Amateau