Bail Set at $30,000 For Man Charged With Throwing Fake Blood on Commissioner Bratton

Categories: NYPD

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C.S. Muncy
Diego Ibanez, center, was arrested while protesting in Times Square on November 24.
Diego Ibanez, the 26-year-old activist who splattered Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and his security detail on Monday, will be able to leave jail if he can come up with a $30,000 bond or $20,000 in cash for bail.

At his arraignment shortly before 8 p.m. Tuesday, Assistant District Attorney Andrew Mercer said that Ibanez threw the "unknown red liquid" at Bratton and his crew "not once but twice."

"Bratton was reviewing the situation and making sure everything was in control and safe," said Mercer. He added that two police officers got irritated eyes from being "struck by this liquid and had to go to the hospital."

"It did, in fact, injure two people," said Mercer. "And it could have injured more."

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Cuomo's $18.6 Million 'Weather Detection System' Wouldn't Have Predicted the Buffalo Storm Anyway

Categories: Politics, Weather

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Anthony Quintano via Flickr
The scene in Buffalo on Tuesday
The National Weather Service is predicting that a "significant" winter storm will arrive Wednesday morning and linger until early Thursday. The weather system will supposedly come in as rain, dousing the coast before freezing into snow in the afternoon.

But, grain of salt: This is just what the NWS is forecasting. And what do they know, anyway?

Take it from Governor Andrew Cuomo: The entire NWS might as well just be one old man on a park bench, licking his finger and sticking it in the wind. Here's what Cuomo said this past weekend at a press conference in the city of Buffalo, which was buried under an unprecedented seven feet of snow last week:


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This Guy Knows How to Make TED Talks Interesting: Get the Speakers Drunk

Categories: Culture

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Stephanie Koch courtesy of Eric Thurm
Eric Thurm has a plan to make TED Talks bearable.
Depending on who you ask, TED Talks are either a treasured vehicle for the exchange of ideas or a sad representation of our generation's inability to pay attention to things.

Brooklyn writer Eric Thurm is trying to settle the question once and for all: He's getting eight experts drunk before putting them on the podium to talk about everything from city pigeons to Jane Austen to "conscious uncoupling."

It's all happening on November 29 in Williamsburg, where Thurm will host an event that he's calling TEDxxx: Ideas Worth Dreading -- an offshoot of similar "talks" that he held as a student at the University of Chicago.


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Spy vs. Guy: What It's Like to Be the Target of NYPD Surveillance

Categories: Longform

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Photographs by Willie Davis
Thadeaus Umpster -- real name Dennis Burke -- was under NYPD surveillance for at least two years.
A pair of tattered banners billowing in the wind mark the site of the Brooklyn Free Store. One reads "ANARCHY For a Better World"; the other says "Share," with an anarchist symbol replacing the letter a.

Books and VHS tapes are packed into a line of milk crates stacked two high — law textbooks, Game of Thrones volumes, Rick Warren's The Purpose Driven Life — and more spill out of a suitcase just behind those (vestiges of Occupy Wall Street's People's Library). There's a table piled with neat sheaves of anarchist literature, Xeroxed copies of the writings of Emma Goldman, and a guide to the Free Store, written in both English and Spanish.

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Ferguson Protesters March From Union Square to the Bronx

Categories: NYPD, Protests

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Katie Toth
Police on the Triborough Bridge early Tuesday morning
At least 100 people occupied the John F. Kennedy bridge from Harlem to the Bronx for nearly an hour early Tuesday, capping a protest that began at 5 p.m. Monday in Union Square over a Missouri grand jury's decision not to indict Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

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How Many People Are 'Unintentionally' Shot by NYPD Officers?

Categories: NYPD

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David Robert Bliwas via Flickr
Akai Gurley was descending a dimly lit staircase in the Louis H. Pink Houses in East New York on November 21 when a shot rang out in the darkness.

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In Union Square, a Crowd Waits for the Grand Jury Decision on Ferguson Shooting

Categories: NYPD, Protests

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Credit: @James From The Internet. Courtesy of Twitter
Police have begun putting up barricades in Union Square, says one activist online.
As much of the country waits for an announcement of the grand jury's decision in the Ferguson shooting case, New York City activists have already begun gathering in Union Square.

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Video: Nightmare Passenger Stabs Cab Driver, Makes Him Crash, Steals His Phone and Money

Categories: Crime

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NYPD via YouTube
A black car crashed in Bushwick this weekend after the passenger inside repeatedly stabbed its driver. The fare made off with the victim's phone and his cash. According to the NYPD, the driver picked the passenger up just before 11 a.m. on Saturday outside 1234 Halsey Street in Bushwick.

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Look Out for These Eleven New York City Scams

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All illustrations by Curtis Tinsley
Tourists are easy (and the only?) targets for MTA card scammers.
December is the final busy month before New York sees its tourism dip in January and February, and with all those out-of-towners comes the opportunity for easy money to be made at subway stations, in Times Square, and even at one of the city's museums. So, with a month left before Christmas, we present this 2014 guide to New York scams, old and new. These first-hand accounts show you're always capable of having the wool pulled over your eyes, whether you're a tourist or a lifelong New Yorker. Happy holidays!

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While Demanding Better Wages and Benefits, NYU Graduate Assistants Are Mulling a Strike

Categories: College

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Michael Gould Wartofsky
Grad students yelled for a "Fair Contract Now" before they started the strike vote.

Graduate students at New York University are weighing whether to step out of the library and onto the picket line.

The Graduate School Organizing Committee -- the union that represents NYU's teaching and research assistants -- is trying to negotiate a contract with school officials, and says the university isn't playing fair.

See More: Graduate Students at NYU Become the First Graduate-Student Union at a Private School (Again)

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Want to Find Love in NYC? Put a Bag Over Your Head

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Photo credit: Irene Chidinma Nwoye
Monica Siu has never been in a relationship.

The 23-year-old is not unattractive. In fact she is quite beautiful -- quick to laugh, with long black hair that falls past her shoulders, and cheeks that flush pink easily.

But in high school, while "everyone else was dating and getting all those feelings," Siu, the oldest of her siblings, was saddled with adult responsibilities because of problems at home.

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No One Knows Why the Eric Garner Grand Jury Is Taking So Long

Categories: NYPD

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Photo credit: gerard_flynn via Compfight cc
Demonstrators this summer at a protest march for Eric Garner
Reaction to Michael Brown's shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, on August 9 was immediate, and not in the way journalists usually use that word.

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Seven Indie Movies out This Weekend You Don't Know About but Should

Categories: Film and TV

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Each week new movies open in New York (and online) by the dozen. The Voice reviews all of 'em. Here are some you might not have heard about that got our critics excited, for better or worse:

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Watch History's Most Sexist Local News Dude Report on the 1970 National Women's Strike

Categories: Film and TV

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One of 2014's best films, Mary Dore's She's Beautiful When She's Angry is an urgent, illuminating dive into the headwaters of second-wave feminism, the movement that -- no matter what its detractors insist -- has fundamentally shaped most aspects of our lives today.


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Protest Movement to Kill Massive Gowanus Parole Center Gains Momentum

Categories: Politics

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Katie Toth
Almost 100 protesters stood outside a manufacturer on Second Avenue in Brooklyn to rally against a parole center being built nearby.
The scene at The Bahche, a popular coffee shop on Third Avenue and 7th Street in Gowanus, Brooklyn, was far from a typical pre-protest gathering.

Rather than the requisite leather-clad anarchists and angry militants, more than 60 Gowanus residents were sipping free hot chocolate while they toiled away with a rainbow array of colored Sharpies. There were smiling parents. There were little children. Soon they would all be braving the elements -- it was an unseasonably frigid 33 degrees on November 18 -- to march two blocks away to a dead-end street full of manufacturing and industrial sites. And there, they listened to a band of pre-teens called Eye of Time jam out to a selection of classic rock favorites.

See Also: Literally No One Is Happy About the Massive Parole Center Being Built in Gowanus

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Has Jennifer Lawrence Outgrown Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games?

Categories: Film and TV

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Photo: Murray Close
Jennifer Lawrence in Mockingjay
Can The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 keep up with the first two films? Why was the final book split into two movies? Does Katniss even want to be part of this revolution? On this week's Voice Film Club podcast, we discuss all things Hunger Games before moving on to a documentary about Sheffield, England's Pulp, and finishing with a recommendation for Happy Valley, a documentary on the fallout after the Penn State scandal. Be sure to follow our hosts on Twitter: Alan Scherstuhl (@studiesincrap), Stephanie Zacharek (@szacharek), and Amy Nicholson (@theamynicholson).

Here's a full rundown of the show:
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 (11:50)
Pulp: A Film About Life, Death & Supermarkets (31:00)
Happy Valley (35:46)

Subscribe to the Voice Film Club podcast


A Proposed Fee for Plastic Shopping Bags Has Council and City Officials Taking Sides

Categories: The Planet

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Katie Toth
Councilman Brad Lander speaks in front of City Hall about a proposed bill on plastic bags.
New York City Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia knows trash.

So it's not surprising that she has a lot to say about the nuisance -- and dangers -- that plastic shopping bags can pose to the city.

During a City Council hearing on November 19, though she stopped short of giving a full-throated endorsement of a new bill to impose a 10-cent fee for single-use shopping bags, Garcia said that the city is certainly sick of dealing with the plastic vessels that litter our streets, choke our storm drains, and get stuck in our trees. "They're nearly impossible to get out of trees," she told the council during the hearing. Worse yet, they end up in the city's rivers, she added, "posing a threat to marine animals that confuse them with a food source."

See more:
Environmental Activist Daniel McGowan, Jailed for Blogging, Is Suing the Bureau of Prisons


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New Wi-Fi 'Payphones' May Include Controversial Location-Tracking Beacons

Categories: Technology

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Jim Pennucci via Flickr
On November 17, New York City announced an ambitious new plan to replace payphones across the five boroughs with nine-and-half-foot pylons beaming free Wi-Fi to any device within a 150-foot radius, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The new network, Mayor de Blasio declared, would be "the fastest and largest municipal Wi-Fi network in the world."

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NYPD Can No Longer 'Neither Confirm Nor Deny' Whether It Was Spying on Muslims

Categories: NYPD

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The NYPD has been going to the legal mat recently to protect records that might shed light on a now-infamous spy program targeting Muslims in the New York City area.

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The FDNY Now Has More Female Firefighters Than Ever. Is That Good Enough?

Categories: FDNY

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Irene Chidinma Nwoye
Three of the four graduates with members of the United Women Firefighters

History was made in the Fire Department of New York on Tuesday after four female firefighters graduated from the FDNY Fire Academy, raising to 44 the number of women in a department of more than 10,500 members -- the most ever in the FDNY's 149-year history.

See also: The FDNY Is a Force of More Than 10,000. Can You Guess How Many Are Women?

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