Eight Arrested and 3,000 Birds Rescued As "Operation Angry Birds" Busts Cockfight in Queens

Image via Google Maps.
74-26 Jamaica Avenue, where the cockfights were reportedly held.
On Saturday night, state police, investigators from the New York Attorney General's Office, and the Department of Homeland Security brought an end to a popular attraction held at an abandoned storefront in Queens: a cockfighting ring, where roosters raised in upstate New York and held at a pet store in Brooklyn were made to fight to the death. Really? We can't find anything better to do with our weekends, cockfighting spectators?

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced this weekend that investigators from his office's New York State Organized Crime Task Force had arrested and charged eight people in the alleged cockfighting ring, in an investigation they dubbed "Operation Angry Birds." During the Saturday night raid, according to the New York Times , officers watched as people paid $40 each and filed into the basement of a vacant storefront at 74-26 Jamaica Avenue in Woodhaven. The roosters waiting to fight were held in sacks on the basement wall; many of the 65 birds rescued, per the NYT, had "their natural spurs clipped off and with sharper metal spurs attached to their bodies."

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Manhattan Topless Book Club on Brooklyn Woman's Arrest: Police Officer Was "Ignorant of the Law," "Abusive"

Image via OCTPFAS official blog
Book club members enjoy reading (and not being arrested) in Central Park
Last week, we told you about Jessica Krigsman, a Brooklyn woman who's suing the city, alleging that she was wrongfully arrested last summer for sitting topless in a Gravesend park.

According to the suit, Krigsman was sitting on a bench when two police officers approached and told her to get dressed; when she declined, the suit alleges, Officer Colleen Canavan forced her shirt on her. Krigsman was cuffed, taken to the precinct, and, ultimately, charged with "obstruction of a sitting area," a charge that was later dropped.

Although going shirtless in New York is, for the nth time, totally, totally legal, Krigsman's lawsuit generated the usually flurry of commentary about whether it's right and appropriate and what about the children.

"Skank," offered one thoughtful commenter beneath a New York Post story.

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Stay Green, New York: Marijuana Arrests To Drop 20% In 2013

You probably know the rules by now: in New York City, if you're caught in public view with pot, or in possession of 25 grams or more, you're getting a violation. Because of this (well, at least, partially), New Yorkers made up 99.2 percent (149,951) of the entire state's marijuana-related arrests (total: 155,048) last year. And, in 2012, getting thrown in the can for the reefer was still No. 1 in New York with the highest amount of arrests.

But lately, the external pressures placed on internal agencies by the incredibly high rates has become an engine for policy shifts. This is why Governor Cuomo continues to try to outlaw the public view provision in the criminal code last year. And why Bloomberg has opted out of the 'stay overnight in jail, be at court in the morning' situation for marijuana offenders. And why NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly has even told his officers to chill (brah) with the pot arrests.

Luckily, it looks like these efforts are actually showing real-time results.

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Why Daylight Robbery Is Best Treated As Metaphor: Reason 728

Categories: Arrests, NYPD

Tuesday around 1:40 p.m., three officers on 15th Street and Eighth Avenue happened by a black male leaning toward a yellow cab with his arms inside the window. We've all been there, either negotiating or vomiting or damning the cab driver to hell, but the officers realized this was different. The driver was calling for help.

That's when one cop in plainclothes, Eric Rivera, walked over to the taxi. The suspect had a knife in his hand, inside the cab.

Rivera screamed at the suspect, stating that he was a cop and ordering the man to drop the knife. That's when the man, a 40-year-old named Darnel Sanders, pulled himself out of the cab and started walking slowly toward the officer.

"Kill me," Sanders said.

Rivera retreated quickly, distancing himself from the advancing Sanders, who was focused on Rivera. Using Rivera as a diversion, the remaining two officers, Wilfred Ramos and Dennis Estwick, rushed Sanders, pried the knife from his hand, and arrested him.

Sanders, an Albany resident, was charged with robbery, menacing, and resisting arrest. Everyone, beleaguered cabbie included, walked away uninjured.

Arrest Count 73 At OWS Saturday, Police Say, As Occupiers Wait For Arraignments

DCPI has confirmed to us that 73 people were arrested over the course of the day at the Occupy Wall Street protest staged yesterday, while OWS maintains that then number is over 90. Our reporter Nick Pinto headed over to 100 Centre Street for the arraignments of those that were taken into custody, but when he arrived found that none of the arrests appeared to be on the calendar for arraignments. Now some people waiting for their arrested friends are telling Nick that the earliest those will happen is tonight.

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Psychologist Drags Cop in Crazy Traffic Bust

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Talking to the crazies all day could make you go insane. That's why we're not putting too much blame on William Bannon Jr., a research psychologist at Mount Sinai Hospital. the New York Post has the story of his crazy arrest, which includes driving on the wrong side of the road, driving on the sidewalk, and finally driving with the arresting officer attached to the driver's-side window of the car. The arrest happened on East 62nd Street near First Avenue. It was apparently a crazy early night on the Upper East Side.

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College Student Arrested and Held for 36 Hours for Being in Riverside Park Without ID

You could say the NYPD is having a PR problem. In the wake of tales of ticket fixing, planting drugs on innocent people, gun-smuggling, "rape cops," accusations of police brutality, and pepper spraying incidents, there's a pretty damning story in the New York Times today about 21-year-old Samantha Zucker, a Carnegie Mellon senior in town with a group of students looking for jobs. Zucker happened to be in Riverside Park a couple hours after it closed at 1 a.m. on October 22 (she wanted to see the Hudson). There, she and a classmate, Alex Fischer, were stopped by the police and given tickets for trespassing. Fischer showed ID and was allowed to leave; Zucker had left her wallet at her hotel, and, when she couldn't show a driver's license, was handcuffed, arrested, and held for 36 hours. She also, she says, was mocked by the arresting officer, identified in court papers as Police Officer Durrell of the 26th Precinct.

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Marshall Garrett Tells the Voice About Being Arrested For Occupying Citibank

Garrett was arrested in Citibank's lobby.
On Saturday, a group of Occupy Wall Street protestors were arrested in the LaGuardia Place Citibank. Among them was freelance photographer and actor Marshall Garrett. Garrett, who has a bank account with Chase, had originally intended to go to that bank, close his account, and go to the big Times Square event in the evening.

Instead, when the Citibank crew needed more people, he and three friends went along for the ride, got arrested, and spent the next day and a half in custody.

We spoke to Garrett on the phone today. Here's an edited transcript of our conversation.

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Bo Diddley's Son Arrested for Occupying Bo Diddley Community Plaza

Ellas Anthony McDaniel, the son of legendary rhythm and blues artist Bo Diddley, was arrested Friday morning in a park named after his father while participating in the Gainesville, Florida offshoot of the Occupy Wall Street protests. The Independent Florida Alligator reports four protesters, including McDaniel, were arrested for trespassing in Bo Diddley Community Plaza while it was closed. "This is my father's park. For them to arrest me in that plaza is ludicrous. ... I'm an American. This is freedom of assembly," McDaniel said. Your move, little Tommy Zuccotti.

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Salvatore Di Bartolo Arrested for Stalking Mayor Bloomberg's Daughter

Di Bartolo's Facebook page
Salvatore Di Bartolo, a 48-year old Queens man, was arrested after sending a series of text messages to an NYPD sergeant asking for help in contacting both Mayor Bloomberg and his daughter, Georgina. The Daily News reports that Di Bartolo, a pizza worker, had sent six messages to the sergeant regarding the planning of his fantasy wedding with Georgina. "Two dozen police and federal agents" arrested Di Bartolo in June, and details about the allegations and arrest are being released. Anytime there is a 4:1 police officer and federal agent to text message ratio, you can assume the threat was taken seriously.

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