Chelsea Now

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AN ACT OF DESTRUCTION DIDN’T CHANGE CHELSEA Looking Back on the Bombing of September 17, 2016

Photo by Daniel Kwak

Photo by Don Pollard/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo


Photo by Scott Stiffler

VOLUME 09, ISSUE 29 | SEPTEMBER 14 - 20, 2017

After the Explosion, Lasting Impact — A Timeline Based on photo and news reporting from Michael Appleton, Gabe Carroll, Sean Egan, Daniel Kwak, Gustavo Martinez, Dusica Sue Malesevic, Tequila Minsky, Naeisha Rose, Scott Stiffler, Eileen Stukane, and Zach Williams.

Photo by Scott Stiffler

The corner of Seventh Ave. and W. 23rd St. at 9:15 p.m. on Sat., Sept. 17, 2016. Approximately 45 minutes earlier, an explosion was heard as far west as 10th Ave. The point of origin turned out to be W. 23rd, on the block between Sixth and Seventh Aves. The NYPD, Homeland Security, Con Edison, and the FDNY quickly arrived on the scene. The total number of injured would be 31, from what was later determined to be a terrorist act.

Photo by Daniel Kwak

FDNY personnel with a stretcher and response gear at the ready, shortly after the explosion.

Photo by Zach Williams

Just under three hours after the explosion, at 11:20 p.m., Mayor Bill de Blasio held a press conference on W. 23rd St. (btw. Fifth & Sixth Aves.). “We believe it was intentional,” he stated, despite earlier speculation of a link to construction happening at the point of the explosion, near Selis Manor (for the blind and visually impaired, 135 W. 23rd St.). As of 11:24 p.m., W. 27th St. (btw. Sixth & Seventh Aves.) was being investigated by the NYPD as a secondary site of interest. An unexploded device would later be linked to the W. 23rd St. incident (see page six for more info on the suspect).

Photo by Daniel Kwak

Photo by Tequila Minsky

Bomb-sniffing dogs patrolled the surrounding area throughout the night of the explosion and into the early morning hours of Sept. 18.

Jane Schreibman, at the W. 27th St. location where she saw the bomb, then reported it. “I’m not a hero,” she insisted, “I’m a New Yorker. Anyone would have done this.”


September 14, 2017

NYC Community Media

of the September 17, 2016 Chelsea Bombing

Photo by Scott Stiffler Photo by Scott Stiffler

West 23rd St. at Seventh Ave. on the morning of Sun., Sept. 18. The block would remain closed to vehicular traffic until the following evening.

A Red Cross Emergency Response Vehicle, parked outside of the Malibu Diner (163 W. 23rd St.). With the combined efforts of Malibu and Red Cross staff, 200 blind or vision-impaired residents of nearby Selis Manor received brunch the morning after the bombing.

Photo by Michael Appleton, Mayoral Photography Office

Photo by Michael Appleton, Mayoral Photography Office

Sun., Sept. 18: Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo outside King David Gallery (131 W. 23rd St.), which sustained damage as a result of the previous night’s explosion.

During a tour of the area, Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo examined a rolling dumpster later confirmed as the explosion’s point of origin.

Photo by Daniel Kwak

Photo by Scott Stiffler

A man surveys damage to W. 23rd St. (btw. Sixth & Seventh Aves.) on the night of Mon., Sept. 19, just after the block was reopened to vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

On the rainy morning of Mon., Sept. 19, the block of the explosion was still closed.

TIMELINE continued on p. 13

NYC Community Media

September 14, 2017


One Year Later on West 23rd Street, Renewal BY EILEEN STUKANE Words on the Council of the City of New York Proclamation, framed and hanging near the front door of the Malibu Diner, honor the character and service of everyone there, and eloquently recall Sept. 17, 2016: “It began as a beautiful September day, not so different from a Tuesday in September 15 years ago, with New Yorkers of every age and background simply going about their lives,” the Proclamation reads, continuing, “In an instant, however, the beauty of the day was shattered… Around 8:30pm, on West 32rd Street in Manhattan, a homemade bomb exploded in a dumpster, injuring 31 people, including two dozen taken to the hospital, and terrifying almost everyone who heard it.” A year later, commerce on W. 23rd St. between Sixth and Seventh Aves. is as normal as ever. With the exception of boarded up windows on two unoccupied buildings, the boulevard shows no signs of the explosion that propelled shrapnel into concrete, bricks, cars, and people, and blew out storefronts and windows. Yet on this anniversary of the blast, aftereffects range from on one hand, a stronger sense of community, a positive awareness of shared resilience, to on the other hand, personal anxiety issues. The explosion, which within two days was identified as the alleged terrorist act of 28-year-old Ahmad Khan Rahimi, occurred in a dumpster containing debris from an extensive and ongoing renovation of Selis Manor (135 W. 23rd St.), a 14-story building with 205 studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments; public housing for the blind and visually impaired. The dumpster was located on the eastern end of the building. Fortunately, that Saturday night most of the residents were playing Bingo in the building’s ground floor game room on its western end. Although windows were shattered as high as the fourth floor, no one was injured, at least not outwardly. A resident of Selis Manor, Helen Murphy, 65, remembers the “BABOOM” sound and a friend suggesting maybe it was a gas explosion. While she feels that everyone came together as family and calmed each other during the crisis, “I don’t want to be in crowds anymore. I avoid subways, buses, I get very claustrophobic. Now I take cabs.” VISIONS at Selis Manor/Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired, a rehabilitation and social service organization offering support and counseling for the tenants of Selis Manor as well as other visually impaired New Yorkers, is on the ground floor of Selis Manor, on the side


September 14, 2017

Photo by Scott Stiffler

West 23rd St. on the morning of Sun., Sept. 18, 2016, with the block between Sixth and Seventh Aves. closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

of the building closer to that dumpster a year ago. Then and now, the organization was less concerned about property damage than it was about the residents. “Tenants are mixed ages, have been blind for different periods of time, and come from very, very different backgrounds,” explained Nancy D. Miller, LMSW, VISIONS executive director/ CEO. “For tenants who had previously had any trauma in their lives, that anxiety and reaction to trauma was brought up again, because in those first few days nobody knew exactly what had happened. They also felt extremely vulnerable since there was so much media coverage of the building. They felt that everybody now knew it was a building for the blind and they would be at increased risk.” Licensed social workers at VISIONS together with social workers from NYC’s Service Program for Older Persons (SPOP) counseled tenants for issues Miller says lingered for about six months following the explosion, “and a few people are in longer-term treatment for anxiety that may not have been caused by the bombing but was exacerbated by the bombing,” she added. On the practical side, since the blast shut down the elevator at Selis Manor, VISIONS has stocked a greater quantity of emergency supplies for all the apartments. “It’s a lot of water, cereal, pack-

Photo by Eileen Stukane

After the blast, Malibu Diner offered a hub for first responders, and prepared meals for the blind and visually impaired residents of Selis Manor. Co-owner Alex Grimpas stands with the City Council’s Proclamation of appreciation and a plaque of recognition from the NYPD’s 13th Precinct.

Photo by Eileen Stukane

Lorena Velastegui and Paul Allwright, seen here at the Malibu Diner, were among the Red Cross volunteers serving community needs following the W. 23rd St. explosion. NYC Community Media

and Awareness at The Heart of the Blast

Photo by William Alatriste/NYC Council

Councilmember Corey Johnson with Helen Murphy during a visit to Selis Manor on Tues., Sept. 20, 2016. Murphy recently told Chelsea Now she still experiences anxiety as a result of her proximity to the explosion.

Photo by William Alatriste/NYC Council

Back row, L to R: State Senator Brad Hoylman, Assemblymember Dick Gottfried, Councilmember Corey Johnson and Mayor Bill de Blasio visited Selis Manor on Tues., Sept. 20, 2016.

Photo by Eileen Stukane

Sarit Peretz, one of the family owners of King David Gallery, initially viewed the extensively damaged business through her smartphone connection to the store’s security cameras. NYC Community Media

aged milk, diapers, on the main floor,” Miller noted. In the same vein, Joyce Carrico, president, Tenants Association of Selis Manor, has urged tenants to keep canned goods and other rations in their homes. “We’re still trying to get evacuation chairs for people who are wheelchair-bound,” she added. Carrico has been conferring all year with the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities, and other agencies, to fulfill this critical need, revealed by the explosion. King David Gallery (131 W. 23rd St.) is a custom interior design provider, gallery, and custom framer. Located next door to Selis Manor, King David today sparkles with samples of its many customized mirrors, glass shower stalls, and artwork framed under glass — looking very different from a year ago, when the explosion blew out the entire storefront and caused a crash of glass from shattered mirrors, stalls, frames, and artwork. Sarit Peretz, co-owner with other members of her family, vividly recalls the night of the blast when her family was gathered at her mother’s house. “My brother got a phone call from a client who lives down the block, who told him ‘Your store blew up,’ ” she said. Through her phone, she checked the security cameras and saw broken glass everywhere and the police

and FBI in the store. “It was like a crime scene,” she recalled, “blood splattered on the mirrors, on the floor. I guess people were hurt outside from the impact of the explosion and were flung into the storefront.” It took about 10 days for the store to be up and running again, having sustained damages costing well into the six-figure range. Like other businesses along W. 23rd St., King David Gallery turned over its security cameras to the FBI. (As other business owners have noted, these cameras do not get returned so added to the cost of any damage is the purchase of a new security system.) “We come from Israel, not that we’re used to this, but we know what it feels like,” Peretz said. “We had detectives coming in every day, for a whole month, reporters in and out, a press conference was held in front of the store.” Overall, insurance companies only compensated minimally for loss of business up and down the street. Councilmember Corey Johnson’s office worked with businesses in the aftermath, connecting them with the appropriate city agencies that could help, such as the NY Superintendent of Financial Services (formerly Superintendent of Insurance). “There was a lot of red tape and bureaucracy and we were making sure businesses were able to reopen as quickly as possible, especially the ones that were immediately next to the blast, like King David,” said Johnson, who was instrumental in organizing the Small Business Crawl of Sat., Sept. 24, 2016, which encouraged New Yorkers to shop on the block of W. 23rd St. that was closed to pedestrian traffic for nearly 48 hours after the bombing. King David Gallery has now signed up for terrorism insurance, which before the blast was an option either unknown or not considered by many Chelsea business owners. The Townhouse Inn of Chelsea (131 W. 23rd St.), a 14-bedroom hotel and the building in which King David Gallery is located, also incurred considerable damages from the explosion. No one at Actium Group, the owner, responded to our requests to talk about the Inn’s recovery. Across the street from the heart of the blast, Orangetheory Fitness (124 W. 23rd St.) had its storefront windows shattered and destroyed, but the glass storefronts of La Maison du Macaron (132 W. 23rd St.), directly across from Selis Manor, were miraculously untouched. Today it’s business as usual. The owners of Orangetheory Fitness did not WEST 23RD continued on p. 12 September 14, 2017


Search, Capture, Charges, Trial: The Chelsea Bombing Suspect BY SEAN EGAN It has been almost a year since the bombing incident that shook Chelsea, injuring dozens and wreaking havoc on a number of local businesses. While the neighborhood has gotten back on its feet since, the anniversary serves as an opportunity to reflect on the terror attack that rocked Chelsea, and take stock of the long-term aftermath of that incident. The bombing occurred at around 8:30 p.m. on Sept. 17, 2016, on W. 23rd St. (btw. Sixth & Seventh Aves.). A Saturday night, the street was relatively busy when the bomb exploded from within a dumpster between the King David Gallery (131 W. 23rd St.) and the Selis Manor affordable housing center for the blind and visually impaired (135 W. 23rd St.). The blast injured 31 people and caused significant damage to surrounding buildings. A short distance away on W. 27th St., another bomb (constructed of a pressure cooker, wires, and a cellphone) was discovered on the block between Sixth and Seventh Aves. However, this bomb did not detonate, after two Egyptian tourists with no connection to the incident removed the bomb from the travel bag it was hidden in, took the bag, and left; through sheer luck their jostling likely prevented it from exploding. These Chelsea incidents were not the only bomb-related happenings to occur on Sept. 17: At around 9:30 a.m. a pipe bomb hidden in a garbage can near the starting line of a Marine Corps 5K detonated. Luckily, the race was delayed, and no one was around when the bomb went off. The next day, Sept. 18, a backpack containing five similarly constructed pipe bombs was found in a trashcan at an NJ Transit station in Elizabeth, NJ; these too did not explode before being disarmed. All three incidents were quickly determined to be connected. Thankfully, the authorities made short work of identifying and apprehending the prime suspect in these connected terror attacks. By Mon., Sept. 19, 2016, the FBI identified then-28year-old Ahmad Khan Rahimi (first referred to as “Rahami” by law enforcement and media) — an American citizen of Afghan descent who settled in New Jersey as a child — as the likely culprit, and released his picture to the media. Furthermore the Wireless Emergency Alert System was employed, sending out the character-limited message, “WANTED: Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28-yr-old male. See media for pic. Call 9-1-1 if seen” to millions of


September 14, 2017


A photo of Ahmad Khan Rahimi, released by the NYPD before he was apprehended in connection to the Sept. 17 Chelsea bombing.


Unknown individuals sought by the FBI turned out to be Egyptian tourists not connected to the bombing.

AP photo by Elizabeth Williams

In this artist’s drawing, Ahmad Khan Rahimi, center, appears in a New York courtroom to face federal terrorism charges on Nov. 10, 2016. His attorneys are David Patton, left, and Peggy Cross-Goldenberg.

area phones. This measure later drew criticism from the public and politicians such as Senator Chuck Schumer for essentially prompting people to independently search for Rahimi’s photo, and potentially provoking dangerous anti-Muslim sentiment.

Soon thereafter a man in Linden, NJ spotted Rahimi sleeping in a doorway of a bar. The authorities were called and following a dramatic shootout — which left both Rahimi and an officer wounded — the suspect was taken into custody. Soon, his troubling Internet

history came to light, as did a handwritten journal containing jihadist missives; this has led most officials to conclude that Rahimi (believed to have worked alone) became radicalized over the past SUSPECT continued on p. 23 NYC Community Media

Chelsea Answers Cruelty With Caring: Recollections of the Bombing BY COUNCILMEMBER COREY JOHNSON The night of September 17, 2016 will forever be seared into my memory. It was a night in which the world’s attention was focused on a relatively inconspicuous block in Chelsea, and our community was tested like never before. It was a night when our community narrowly avoided a potentially devastating loss of life. It was pleasant mid-September Saturday night; the kind of night that reminds you that summer doesn’t truly end on Labor Day. After having dinner with a friend at Trestle on 10th Ave., I began walking east on W. 23rd St. When I reached Ninth Ave., the night’s quiet was shattered by a deafening sound: BOOM! The ground shook under my feet as I and those around me stopped in our tracks. We exchanged knowing looks. It was clear that we shared the same initial thought: terrorism. Though I couldn’t see the source, the explosion had come from the east. I instinctively walked in that direction as I called Deputy Inspector Brendan Timoney of the NYPD’s 13th Precinct. He was already aware of the incident and en route to the scene. At W. 23rd St. and Seventh Ave., emergency responders were already on site and the NYPD had begun to cordon off the block. Within minutes, a large police, fire, and EMT presence occupied the neighborhood. The intersection was thick with emergency vehicles and a growing crowd of concerned onlookers were assembling on the street corners. The explosion had occurred within a construction dumpster immediately in front of VISIONS at Selis Manor/Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired, on the north side of W. 23rd St., between Sixth and Seventh Aves. The NYPD was fairly certain early on that the explosion was man-made. I remember that only a truly sick individual would intentionally target this population. It was also puzzling: This location makes little sense as a target for terrorism. A midblock dumpster on a street with moderate pedestrian traffic in a partially residential area didn’t seem to make sense. This wasn’t a landmark or tourist destination. This wasn’t Times Square or the World Trade Center. It was just a regular New York City street. A tremendous feeling of relief swept over us when we learned that there were no initial reports of casualties. But we knew that this could change, and prayed that it wouldn’t. The police continued to widen the secure area surrounding the site of the attack. Bystanders were NYC Community Media

Photo by Daniel Kwak

The NYPD quickly cordoned off the area surrounding W. 23rd St. after an explosive device detonated at approx. 8:30 p.m. on Sat., Sept. 17, 2016.

Photo by William Alatriste/NYC Council

Councilmember Johnson was a frequent presence on the block of the Chelsea bombing in the days that followed.

Photo by William Alatriste/NYC Council

On Mon., Sept. 19, after the Chelsea bombing and after explosives were found near a train station in Elizabeth, NJ, officials held a press conference in Penn Station to outline security measures.

ushered toward W. 22nd and 24th Sts. Patrons of nearby sidewalk cafes on the avenues were asked to leave the restaurants immediately. Firmly in control of the scene, it was clear that the NYPD’s extensive training for this type of situation had prepared them for a well-executed response. A sobering sight was a unit of heavily armed antiterrorism forces in body armor with what appeared to be automatic weapons. It made me cognizant of the nightmare scenario for which they were prepared. FDNY Chaplain Reverend Stephen Harding, who is also pastor at St. Peter’s Church in Chelsea, arrived at the scene. I was struck by the realization that he was on site to potentially deliver last rites. Nonetheless, his presence was indeed comforting amidst the very tense scene. One of my most important functions as a City Councilmember is to help disseminate important information to the public. I tweeted what I knew as information became available. My cell phone rang with NY1, CNN, MSNBC, and other outlets seeking accurate and up-todate information from the site. The surrounding subway stations were evacuated RECOLLECTIONS continued on p. 23 September 14, 2017


File photo by Jackson Chen

FIT public safety personnel were honored at the 10th Precinct’s Annual Police Awards Dinner on June 27, for their response to the Chelsea bombing. L to R: Mark Walters, Moises Felix, Vivian Nunes, Nicholas Camacho, Barney Bonets, Matthias Scholar, Sean Tucker, Mortimer Chillcott, Sandy Dickens, Bruce Etoumou, and Mohammed Omar.

During the Chaos, Coordination Between FIT, NYPD, Penn South BY DUSICA SUE MALESEVIC Until about 8 p.m. the night of Sept. 17, 2016, it had been a normal shift for police officers Daniel Sendrowski and John Campanella, part of the NYPD’s 10th Precinct. “We were doing our regular thing driving around,” Sendrowski recalled. “We were on 23rd St. between Fifth and Sixth Avenues when we saw the device go off. We saw a flash and a lot of smoke. When we saw it go off, we hit the lights. “Me and John were literally first on the scene.” For Sendrowski, it took a few minutes before it become clear what was happening. Initially, since the bombing happened near a site with scaffolding and dumpsters, he thought it might have been something to do with construction. “As I saw the more broad picture, it really started to register this is more of an explosion. At that point I ran over to the car, grabbed the crime tape and started to rope off the area,” he told Chelsea Now at the 10th Precinct earlier this week. They radioed for back up. At the 10th Precinct on W. 20th St. (btw. Seventh & Eighth Aves.) — a stone’s throw from where the bombing happened at W. 23rd St. (btw. Sixth & Seventh Aves.) — many had felt the explosion, Sendrowski recalled. The 10th shares a radio frequency with the 13th Precinct — the bombing took place within its borders — and both precincts sprung to action, sending personnel to the scene. The two precincts work together often, he said. “When we got there, there was smoke in the air. Debris all over the road,” he said. There was a dumpster thrown across the street, he said, with orange and white


September 14, 2017

Photo by Dusica Sue Malesevic

Police Officer Daniel Sendrowski, seen here, was one block away at the time of the bombing, driving on W. 23rd St. along with Officer John Campanella. They were the NYPD’s first on the scene.

traffic dividers in the road along with pieces of plants and trees all over the place. A taxi that had been going east on W. 23rd St. had stopped in the middle of the road when the explosion happened, he said. The driver was fine, and Sendrowski and Campanella began to evacuate the area — mostly people working on the block — and to secure the scene for detectives. Sendrowski, a cop of 10 years, said, “A lot of that night is a big haze for me — I was caught up in the moment.” “It was chaotic,” he remembered. But, “Training kicked in and you acted according to your training.” Part of that training is the hammering

home that there could be a secondary device, he noted, adding, “I was very concerned there might be another one in the immediate area.” Detective Mike Petrillo, longtime Community Affairs Officer for the 10th, said the NYPD is cognizant of possible secondary or tertiary devices, and a “frozen zone” is created with the area cordoned off. That night, there was indeed a second device — not on 23rd, but a few streets over on W. 27th (btw. Sixth & Seventh Aves). Longtime Chelsea resident Jane Schreibman was passing by and noticed a pot with wires sticking out of it. Her call to 911 “probably saved a few people’s lives with that,” Petrillo said.

Petrillo was at home on Staten Island when he got the call about the bombing, and as he drove into the city, he started calling anywhere from 20 to 40 people from the community, including elected officials. “My main focus as a Community Affairs Officer is to liaison,” he said in a phone interview, “to keep it calm and keep the flow of information both ways.” A police officer for 28 years, Petrillo was assigned to the 10th in 1990, and has been a Community Affairs Officer since 2003. “The partnership with the community is great,” he said. Petrillo reached COORDINATION continued on p. 14 NYC Community Media

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Wednesday, October 18


7pm – 9pm

Location: Lenox Hill Hospital Einhorn Auditorium 131 East 76th Street New York, NY 10075 Presented by Northwell Health Orthopaedic Institute: Fred Cushner, MD Orthopaedic Joint Surgeon

Michelle Griez, PT Physical Therapist

Giles R. Scuderi, MD Orthopaedic Joint Surgeon

Snacks and light refreshments will be served.

Register now at or call (844) 91-ORTHO (6-7846).

Orthopaedic Institute NYC Community Media

September 14, 2017


New Biz Motto and Mission: ‘Edible Cookie Dough On-Tha-Go’ BY LEVAR ALONZO A new business whose look, sound, and taste pays homage to the best of ’90s-era hip-hop is carving a niche by scooping up cups of edible cookie dough from its outdoor cart. 2 Dough Boyz made its debut on August 15 in front of Gansevoort Market (353 W. 14th St., btw. Hudson St. & Eighth Ave.). The business is the brainchild of Chelsea residents Matt Maroone, a former marketing executive at Universal Records, and his wife, Christina. The cart sells flavors whose names reference ’90s hip-hop songs and albums. Among the four items currently on the menu are “Confetti to Die” (a sugar cookie dough with white chocolate chips and rainbow sprinkles inspired by rapper Notorious B.I.G.) and “The World is S’mores” (named after rapper Nas’ “The World is Yours” hit single). Family and friends who share the couple’s love of ‘90s music helped come up with the names. Matt, who grew up on classic hip-hop, was a marketing executive at Universal

Records in the early 2000s — the dawn of music streaming. When CD sales dropped as songs and albums became easily accessible online, he found himself “tired of trying to sell a product consumers didn’t want.” That’s when the idea of creating a business model that captured the nature of rivals battling for the top spot began to take hold. He also wanted it to be fun and creative, something that stood out from the rest. Matt said he came up with the name of the company while listening to Outkast’s 1996 song “Two Dope Boyz (In a Cadillac).” “It was like ideas just came flooding into my brain and I had to find a way to get them out,” he recalled. Matt and his wife spent months in the kitchen whipping up different ideas for the childhood treat of cookie dough (they both are big cookie lovers, he noted). The couple saw an opportunity for themselves in the edible cookie dough market and set out to “create a unique dessert,” Matt said. “I wanted to do a fun creative project, something that was more than just business.” Photos by Levar Alonzo

Nate Logan is an emerging rapper who sees 2 Dough Boyz as a jumping off point for his music career.

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September 14, 2017

“Chocolate Chip Hip Hooray,” a spin on Naughty by Nature’s “Hip-Hop Hooray,” is turning out to be 2 Dough Boyz’ most popular flavor.

In keeping with the cart’s fun hip-hop theme, Matt employs emerging rappers. He encourages his employees to use the same drive that make them want to be the best rapper and put the same energy into running the cart. “I was hired on the spot,” rapper and cart employee Nate Logan recalled. “I was tested on my knowledge of hiphop and passed.” Reaction to the product has been overwhelmingly positive.

“This is definitely a fun concept and people love it,” he said. Nate, a recent graduate from St. John’s University, looks to land a music internship or job in the industry. Matt urges his employees to bring their own ideas to the business, and he is looking to help Nate join a record label that gives him that same sense of creativity and freedom. DOUGH BOYZ continued on p. 16 NYC Community Media


“ADOPTAPALOOZA” PET ADOPTION EVENT Smart, loyal, friendly, and not opposed to tummy rubs — people who match this description are prime candidates for welcoming a pet into their home. But how? Lucky for you, the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals will host a mega adoption event (“Adoptapalooza”) at Union Square’s north plaza on Sun., Sept. 17, between noon and 5 p.m. Representatives from 35 different shelters and rescue groups will be there with cats and dogs (and probably some rabbits). For more info, visit

FREE SUMMER MOVIES IN HUDSON BOULEVARD PARK Unspooling every Thursday in September, when it’s neither oppressively hot nor too chilly to chill outdoors, this late summer series has one more trick up its sleeve — a 7:30 p.m. start time that guarantees your movie will begin in the dark, just the way Hollywood intended. With the twinkling lights of nearby Hudson Yards, you’ll still have enough ambient light to locate that bag of Twizzlers — and as for stars in the sky, who needs them? There are plenty on the screen: Sept. 14 fea-

tures “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” followed by “Back to the Future” on Sept. 21 and “Hocus Pocus” on Sept. 28. At Hudson Boulevard Park (btw. W. 33rd & W. 36th Sts., mid-block btw. 10th & 11th Aves.). This series is co-presented by local nonprofit The Uprising ( and the Hudson Yards/ Hell’s Kitchen Alliance. Check them out at If you did, you’d have a clue that you missed the opening Sept. 7 fi lm: “Clueless.”

SHRED DAY Just because a bunch of elected officials are sponsoring an event that revolves around the shredding of personal information doesn’t necessarily mean there needs to be an investigation. Indeed, all of us have sensitive documents containing medical details, home addresses, and plenty of other stuff that would make a garbage-picking identity thief salivate. So gather that material up and bring it to this free event, where your personal papers will be cut into a million pieces. Up to three boxes per person will be accepted. It happens Tues., Sept. 19, 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. (on W. 26th St.. btw. Eighth & Ninth Aves.). For info, call 212-633-8053. That’s the main number for the office of Senator Brad Hoylman — one of the event sponsors, along with Congressmember Jerry Nadler, Public Advocate Letitia James, Comptroller Scott Stringer, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, Assemblymember Dick Gottfried, and

File photo by Scott Stiffler

Bring up to three boxes of sensitive info to Sept. 19’s “Shred Day” event and it will be ground into bits.

Councilmember Corey Johnson. They’ve got nothing to hide, and neither do you — but we all have information that needs to be protected. Editor’s Note: Contrary to the implications of the fi le photo used for this listing, no actual dinosaurs will be participating — in fact, the company responsible for the shredding will be LionCage (sadly, no actual lions will be on hand; but you can see a picture of one at

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NYC Community Media

September 14, 2017


Photo by Daniel Kwak

King David Gallery, boarded up as a result of damaged sustained from the explosion. WEST 23RD continued from p. 5

want to comment on this anniversary. Pascal Goupil, owner of La Maison du Macaron, cozy café, macaroon and pastry shop, was not in the shop at the time of the blast but two female employees were behind the counter. “The dumpster was 20 yards from the shop. It could have

come straight through and killed everybody. That was lucky,” Goupil recalled. He praised the city agencies for their work in the aftermath, noting, “There were lots of people coming in to see if there was any need. They were fantastic.” “When it comes to difficult moments, WEST 23RD continued on p. 14

Photo by Naeisha Rose

L to R: Zina Kirko and Natalie Heras were working at La Maison du Macaron on the night of Sept. 17, 2016, and comforted a family who ran into the shop after the explosion.

Photo by Scott Stiffler Photo by Eileen Stukane

Pascal Goupil arrives in the early morning to create freshly baked pastries for his La Maison du Macaron, which escaped damage from the explosion directly across the street.


September 14, 2017

Three days after the bombing, Orangetheory Fitness owner Jessica Kumari (right) noted, “I’m happy we could help,” regarding the widely disseminated internal and external footage from her 124 W. 23rd St. storefront business. Surveillance cameras showed a flash from the blast, people running, and the studio’s shattered windows. NYC Community Media

Photo by Scott Stiffler

On Fri., Sept. 23, a NY State Dept. of Financial Services Mobile Command Center was parked on W. 23rd St. (btw. Sixth and Seventh Aves.), offering info to businesses damaged and/or impacted by lack of pedestrian traffic in the days following the bombing.

Photo by Scott Stiffler

The shattered windows of Orangetheory Fitness (124 W. 23rd St.) remained in this state for several months after the bombing. TIMELINE continued from p. 3

Photo by Naeisha Rose

Photo by Dusica Sue Malesevic

Working on the block of the bombing, Dayron Rodriguez of GLASSwerks said, “I’ve seen broken glass, but this a lot in one shot.”

Photo by Scott Stiffler

Binod Bhattari of Landmark Wine & Spirits (167 W. 23rd St.) stands beside a sign that greeted shoppers who took part in Sept. 24’s Chelsea Small Business Crawl, organized to support those who lost business while the block of the Chelsea bombing was closed to pedestrian traffic. NYC Community Media

September 14, 2017


Photo by Scott Stiffler

Photo by Scott Stiffler

At right, the vacant St. Vincent de Paul Church (123 W. 23rd St.) was boarded up shortly after the explosion shattered its windows. At left, the building housing King David Gallery and The Townhouse Inn of Chelsea also sustained damage.

The damaged windows of Orangetheory Fitness, the only business to report having terrorism insurance at the time of the blast, took months to repair.

WEST 23RD continued from p. 12

we are united and it helps a lot,” said Alex Grimpas, co-owner of Malibu Diner (163 W. 23rd St.), which became a hub for city agencies and the Red Cross during the three days that the street and other businesses were closed down. Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio,

COORDINATION continued from p. 8

out to State Senator Brad Hoylman and Councilmember Corey Johnson’s offices, both of which offered resources. He called Miguel Acevedo, president of the Fulton Houses Tenants’ Association, and Darlene Waters, president of the ElliottChelsea Houses Tenants’ Association. Petrillo was in constant contact with the community, including Larry O’Neill, Penn South Security Chief, and Mario Cabrera, Director of Public Safety for the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT). “We’re very lucky with both groups,” he said of the security personnel of FIT and Penn South. O’Neill got the call from Petrillo, and, “Once you wake me up with something of that nature, I don’t go back to sleep.” He instructed his patrolmen to make sure all the dumpsters were sealed, to have more patrols on Eighth and Ninth Aves., and to remove any garbage cans inside and around the perimeter of Penn South. O’Neill offered the use of the complex’s community rooms for a staging area and offered assistance, but the NYPD had it in hand, he said by phone. “He was really great,” O’Neill said of Petrillo. “I’m lucky — the 10th Precinct always keeps me in the loop. They do a


September 14, 2017

working with the Red Cross, allowed Malibu to open a day after the blast in order to provide meals for tenants at Selis Manor that the Red Cross delivered, and to continue offering regular breakfasts for tenants who know the number of steps to take from their building to the diner, where they socialize and enjoy a meal outside their apartments. Grimpas reached

out to support responders from the FBI, NYPD, FDNY, NY Office of Emergency Management, and American Red Cross, by offering Malibu’s facilities and food. The Tuesday after the blast, Mayor de Blasio, joined by a number of city officials, visited Malibu and spent 45 minutes in a booth, eating and chatting with Chelsea residents. That affirmation

from the Mayor, the Proclamation from the NY City Council, and a plaque of appreciation from the NYPD, are touching and important to Grimpas. “The Proclamation will stay on the wall forever,” he said. “You want to work hard and make money but you have to think about the people who live close to you, to give before you take.”

fine, outstanding job. The communication is phenomenal. They treat us like partners.” O’Neill started working at Penn South, which runs from W. 23rd St. to W. 29th Sts. from Eighth to Ninth Aves., in November 1985, working his way from patrolmen to Sergeant to Captain to Security Chief, and said he feels “like I live here” in Chelsea (he lives in Washington Heights). Penn South General Manager Brendan Keany said he was made aware of the bombing from an assistant commissioner for the city’s Housing Preservation and Development, the agency that oversees the complex. “Even though it was a block away, we weren’t really affected,” Keany said by phone. Nonetheless, there was still concern, and security made sure to build a strong perimeter on Eighth Ave., said Keany, who has worked at the complex for 32 years. “No possibility that anybody could come on our property to do anything nefarious,” he said. “We also secured all the garbage cans on the Eighth Avenue side immediately.” Both Keany and O’Neill praised their security staff of 25, which they say undergo thorough background checks from

them as well as the NYPD when they go for a special patrolmen certification. The security staff also goes to CERT training for disaster preparedness (CERT stands for Community Emergency Response Team). “My security officers are not run-ofthe-mill,” O’Neill said. Penn South has 2,820 units and about 4,500 tenants, Keany said, and an email blast was sent to residents to keep them aware of the situation. About 75 to 80 percent of residents are on the email blast, he noted. For older tenants not on the list, a notice was put up between the elevators on the ground floor, O’Neill said. Over at 227 W. 27th St. and Seventh Ave., Sergeant José Santiago, a member of FIT’s security personal, “had actually heard the blast on 23rd St. He sent an officer over to investigate what had happened,” Cabrera told Chelsea Now by phone. Santiago notified Cabrera, and put everyone on heightened alert and to be extra cautious, he said. After the blast, at around 11 p.m., Santiago got a call from the NYPD there was a second device half a block east of FIT, Cabrera recalled. FIT has three dorms on campus, with about 500 residents per dorm, he said, and that Saturday night, Cabrera estimat-

ed around 300 to 400 people, including staff, were told to shelter in place after the second device was discovered. “In the event of a possible explosion, you don’t want people going out,” he explained. Meanwhile, FIT’s security staff “checked in between parked cars, the campus’ landscaping — trees, bushes — any place something might have been left behind,” he said. The all clear was given around 2 a.m., and Cabrera said, “There was prevailing calm. The effort between our guys and the NYPD was seamless. It was a wellorganized response.” Cabrera has worked at FIT for eight years, and has been in his current position for three years, and knows Petrillo well — they often coordinate, including move-in day and campus safety events. “We didn’t have to work to establish communication at the scene,” he said. “I could not have expected a better outcome. Everyone did a fantastic job. It is a model for future events.” Petrillo said, “Having those secondary eyes and ears is key. We rely on our partnerships. It’s always a collaborative effort between Penn South, FIT and the precinct,” as well as the housing developments in the neighborhood — Fulton Houses and Elliott-Chelsea Houses. NYC Community Media

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DOUGH BOYZ continued from p. 10

Another local rapper wrote the company’s theme song. Jamieson’s lyrics, which include the below passage, capture the essence of 2 Dough Boyz’ competitive spirit: Old school, new school Need to know this We’re the only Cookie dough specialists My competition I waive them good riddance Flood the street with dough Can you taste the difference? For the whole song, visit OWDmzVHCAj4. The business is looking to expand its unique concept by adding a second cart soon. In the meantime, according to Matt, he and Christina are working on about 20 more flavors. They want to keep the menu small, though, because they’ve found that people don’t want a huge menu. Matt also urges you to “hit ’em up” on the company’s social media and suggest names for different combinations. There’s only one requirement: “It has to be a pun on a ’90s hip-hop song or album

Photo by Levar Alonzo

Open seven days a week, the 2 Dough Boyz cart sits at the entrance to Gansevoort Market, blasting classic hip-hop and serving up cups of the sweet treat.

and work with ingredients that reflect the pun and make sense,” Matt said. The cart’s cookie dough comes in three different sizes — the $6 “Little Wayne,” the $9 “Fat Joe” and the $12

“Big Pun.” It is open from noon to 10 p.m. seven days a week. When it is raining and starts to get cold they will move inside of the Gansevoort Market, Matt noted.

Visit Email them at Follow at,, and

Being sick and hungry is an urgent crisis no one should face. Help us deliver hope, compassion and love, all wrapped up in a nutritious meal.

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September 14, 2017

Save the date for our 29th annual film festival

October 19th -24th, 2017 Become a member or learn more at

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TOP DRIVER DISTRACTIONS Using mobile phones Leading the list of the top distractions behind the wheel are mobile phones. Phones now do more than just place calls, and drivers often cannot pull away from their phones, even when driving. According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, studies have shown that driving performance is lowered and the level of distraction is higher for drivers who are heavily engaged in cell

NYC Community Media

phone conversations. The use of a hands-free device does not lower distraction levels. The percentage of vehicle crashes and nearcrashes attributed to dialing is nearly identical to the number associated with talking or listening.

Daydreaming Many people will admit to daydreaming behind the wheel or looking at a person or object outside of the car for too long. Per-

haps they’re checking out a house in a new neighborhood or thought they saw someone they knew on the street corner. It can be easy to veer into the direction your eyes are focused, causing an accident. In addition to trying to stay focused on the road, some drivers prefer the help of lane departure warning systems.

Eating Those who haven’t quite mastered walking and

chewing gum at the same time may want to avoid eating while driving. The majority of foods require a person’s hands to be taken off of the wheel and their eyes to be diverted from the road. Reaching in the back seat to share some French fries with the kids is also distracting. Try to eat meals before getting in the car. For those who must snack while en route, take a moment to pull over at

a rest area and spend 10 minutes snacking there before resuming the trip.

Reading Glancing at an advertisement, updating a Facebook status or reading a book are all activities that should be avoided when driving. Even pouring over a traffic map or consulting the digital display of a GPS system can be distracting.

September 14, 2017


HERE Was There and Will Surely Endure Silver Anniversary season looks back, forges ahead

Photo by Paula Court

L to R: Mariana Newhard and Purva Bedi in “Assembled Identity” (April 24-May 13, 2018).

BY TRAV S.D. By many measures, 1993 was a pretty wretched year. The World Trade Center was bombed (the first time); the siege in Waco occurred, resulting in the loss of 76 lives; the US military saw action in Iraq, Somalia, and Haiti; Arthur Ashe died of AIDS; River Phoenix OD’d; and Colin Ferguson shot up the LIRR. But that same year, in Lower Manhattan, something wonderful happened. Two Downtown theatre companies, Tiny Mythic and the Home for Contemporary Theatre and Art, joined forces to create HERE Arts Center. The 2017-2018 season will be HERE’s 25th, which means the company will be celebrating its Silver Anniversary — no


September 14, 2017

small feat given the failure rate of small arts organizations. “It was just a raw space when we found it,” said co-founder Kristin Marting, of their location at 145 Sixth Ave. “It was 13,000 square feet of storage, full of refrigerators and appliances, with a loading dock. We had to gut and rehab the whole space ourselves, and our family and friends, with just sweat equity.” As originally configured, HERE had three theatres, a large art gallery on the ground floor, and a cafe space on the Sixth Ave. side. The space was initially considered a vessel for its two main companies, Tiny Mythic and the Home for Contemporary Theatre and Art,

and the various artists and companies they sponsored and hosted through their core programs. The two founding companies merged in 1997 and Marting was named Executive Director, a post she held for a decade. In 2007, her job title shifted to Artistic Director, with Kim Whitener coming on as Producing Director. “I came on during on what we call our ‘teenager with braces phase,’ ” recalled Whitener. During these years (2005-2007) the building’s owners announced that they going to convert the building to condominiums. “They didn’t want us here anymore,” said Whitener. Nevertheless, HERE persisted. They raised the money to get out

of their current lease, condensed their footprint, and purchased the smaller square footage. Work on the conversion was completed in 2008 (with the entrance on Dominick St., one block south of Spring St.). It was a bold and risky gambit, but it paid off, solidifying HERE’s financial position even as it supported hundreds of artists and helped change the face of the neighborhood. “No one used to go beyond Sixth Avenue,” said Whitener, “Now the neighborhood is bustling. All those artists moving in made a difference. HERE has made an impact.” HERE continued on p. 20 NYC Community Media

Just Do Art

Photo by James Coote

Find out what Oslo already knows: The Krumple presents “YOKAI, Remedy for Despair” at The Tank through Sept. 24.

Photo by Ed Forti

Photo by James Coote

L to R: Alexandra Anne, Margaret Catov and Erin Beirnard in “The Climbers” — at Metropolitan Playhouse through Oct. 8.

From The Krumple’s “Do Not Feed the Trolls.” View the show’s clever stand-alone short film at


“THE CLIMBERS” The programmers at Metropolitan Playhouse either have a fully functioning crystal ball squirreled away in the prop room of their East Village theater, or an extraordinarily keen sense of when something old is new again. That’s the only reasonable explanation for their uncanny ability to revive early American plays that turn out to be tailor-made for our times. Such is the case with the work that opens their 2017-2018 season, whose theme of “Resilience” calls to the modern mind everything from hurricane recovery to having the wind knocked out of you after an unwelcome election result. Written by then-Broadway box office darling Clyde Fitch, 1901’s “The Climbers” finds the Hunter family reeling from the death of their patriarch — NYC Community Media

and bereft of assets or income (due to extravagant spending and an ill-advised investment). Two factions of the family emerge, with one side cooking up a fraudulent fundraising scheme and the other choosing the route of personal sacrifice. This damnation of Gilded Age greed and decadence, says artistic director Alex Roe, is “a welcome appraisal of a divided culture from a century past” whose “vote for compassion and empathy is one that should count again.” If the Hunters are divided, at least the creative team is on the same page. Directed by Metropolitan mainstay Michael Hardart, “The Climbers” has been cast with faces from past seasons who will share the stage for the first time — including Ian Eaton (“East Village Chronicles”), Margery Catlov (“Leah, the Forsaken”), Becca Ballenger (“The Hero”), and David Licht (“Rollo’s Wild Oat”). Currently in previews; opens Sept.

15, closes Oct. 8. Thurs.–Sat. at 7:30pm; Sun. at 3pm. Additional 3pm performances Wed., Sept. 27/Oct. 4 & Sat., Sept. 30/Oct. 7. At Metropolitan Playhouse (220 E. Fourth St., btw. Aves. A & B). For tickets ($30; $25 for students/seniors, $10 for children), call 800-838-3006 or visit

THE KRUMPLE AT THE TANK Taking its title from the Japanese word for supernatural entities capable of mischief, malice, or good fortune, “YŌKAI, Remedy for Despair” doesn’t hold back on delivering Parisian-tinged Norwegian theater company The Krumple’s promise to combine “theater, dance, magic, poetry, and sheer stupidity.” But don’t mistake the pride they take in being silly for a lack of serious subject matter.

Clad in beige bodysuits, Yōkai-like members of the silent ensemble fill the empty stage with miniature trees, mountains, skyscrapers, and puffy clouds — then populate that world with destined-to-converge storylines involving a horrible car accident, a hungry cod, and a father/daughter’s toxic Christmas Eve. Cutting the constant despair with moments of slapstick and surrealism, The Krumple excels at deploying wordless whimsy in the service of themes both hopeful and disturbing. For a better sense of their ability to deftly move between such extremes, visit and view the short film version of their Internet bullying stage show, “Do Not Feed the Trolls.” “YŌKAI” is performed Thurs., Fri., Sat. at 8pm and Sun. at 3pm through Sept. 24 (also Wed., Sept. 20 at 8pm). At The Tank (312 W. 36th St., btw. Eighth & Ninth Aves.). For tickets ($15–$35), visit September 14, 2017


Photo by Richard Termine

The 12-week engagement of Basil Twist’s “Symphonie Fantastique� begins March 29, 2018.

Photo by Carl Skutsch Photo by Benjamin Heller

L to R: Nola Sporn Smith and Jade Daugherty in “Stairway to Stardom,� playing through Sept. 23. HERE continued from p. 18

It has also grown. Initially an organization with a $350,000 annual budget, that number has grown nearly sixfold. Once entirely volunteer based, HERE now employs nine full-

time and nine part-time staff members. Equally impressive is the high quality of the work the company has produced over the past quarter century — including such groundbreaking productions as the premiere of Eve


! "


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L to R: HERE Producing Director Kim Whitener and Artistic Director Kristin Marting.

Ensler’s “The Vagina Monologues,� Basil Twist’s “Symphonie Fantastique,� Basil Twist and Joey Arias’ “Arias with a Twist,� Young Jean Lee’s “Songs of the Dragons Flying to Heaven,� Trey Lyford & Geoff Sobelle’s “all wear bowlers,� Taylor Mac’s “The Lily’s Revenge,� and several works created and directed by Marting. Other artists with a close association with the space have included Labyrinth Theater Company, Elevator Repair Service, Target Margin Theater, and The Talking Band. This year’s season will present three world premieres of works developed through the HERE Artist Residency Program, or HARP: “Stairway to Stardom� by Amanda Szeglowski/cakeface, “Thomas Paine in Violence� by Paul Pinto, and “American Weather� by Chris Green. There will also be a new original work by Marting and co-creator Purva Bedi and Mariana Newhard entitled “Assembled Identity,� and a

revival of a seminal production from HERE’s past: Basil Twist’s “Symphonie Fantastique,� which will soon be celebrating its own 20th anniversary, and has traveled to cities from San Francisco to London. Said Twist, “The original production of ‘Symphonie Fantastique’ was part of HERE’s puppetry program and presented in the little theatre downstairs [now named the Dorothy B. Williams Theatre in honor of Twist’s grandmother]. After the HERE run, I developed a touring production and the show got a bit bigger, and this time we’ll be bringing that bigger version of the show to the upstairs space [the Mainstage Theatre]. I really do hope to recreate the magic of that original production, the sense of discovery. It means a lot to bring it back here. It’s thrilling. It’s like coming home.� For more on HERE’s 2017-2018 season, visit NYC Community Media


BROOKLYN The Community News Group is proud to introduce BROOKLYN PAPER RADIO. Join Brooklyn Paper Editor-in-Chief Vince DiMiceli and the New York Daily News’ Gersh Kuntzman every Tuesday at 4:30 for an hour of talk on topics Brooklynites hold dear. Each show will feature in-studio guests and call-out segments, and can be listened to live or played anytime at your convenience.








September 14, 2017



September 14, 2017

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following an attack. But officials soon confirmed that a suspicious device had been discovered on W. 27th St., between Sixth and Seventh Aves. Residents of the block were told to shelter in place while the bomb squad investigated. We would later learn that an undetonated explosive device had indeed been spotted by a vigilant Chelsea resident named Jane Schreibman, who saw a strange object on her block and reported it. It would turn out to be an improvised device that was abandoned by the terror-

ist. Reports of undetonated devices at NJ Transit stations in New Jersey would also prove to be true. Again, the loss of life could have been devastating had this plan been carried out as intended. Night became day as hints of the sun crept over the rooftops to the east. The following hours and days blurred together as I sought to assure and provide information to my constituents and assist the residents and small businesses directly affected by the bombing. We did what we could to help the community

bounce back. The following weekend, my staff and I organized a Small Business Crawl on W. 23rd St. Hundreds of New Yorkers came out to patronize businesses that were either damaged by the bombing or closed in its aftermath. What I remember most from that time after the bombing, however, are the ways in which New Yorkers rose up to support and protect one another. The Malibu Diner, for example, served free, hot meals to the residents of Selis Manor when they couldn’t use their own facilities. It was an honor to present the Malibu Diner with a City Council Proclamation the following week at City Hall. Even now, I become emotional when I remember scores of New Yorkers running toward, not away from, the sound of the blast, in case there was some way they could help. The lowest moments and cruelest acts of humanity also inspire the greatest and most incredible acts of love and caring. We’ve seen that in the aftermath of the devastating hurricanes in Texas and Florida. We saw it in the days and weeks after September 11, 2001. And we certainly saw it last year in Chelsea. Councilmember Corey Johnson represents District 3 in the NYC Council, which includes the neighborhoods of Chelsea, Hell’s Kitchen, Greenwich Village, and parts of Hudson Square and the Upper West Side.

System to include links to pictures and phone numbers, after its shortcomings were highlighted during the manhunt. Later on, in June 2017, the New York State Assembly passed a bill putting restrictions on the sale of ammonium nitrate and aluminum powder, two chemicals sold separately, which are combined to form explosives similar to the ones Rahimi allegedly employed. The bill has not yet been voted on by the Senate, though Chelsea’s own Senator Brad Hoylman has commented, “I think it’s a good bill and I would strongly support it.” Similarly, in Sept. 2017, New Jersey state legislators announced that they would introduce a bill allowing law enforcement to freeze the financial assets of suspected terrorists; Rahimi’s

alleged attacks were cited as an impetus for the measure. Following a flurry of activity over the first few weeks of the aftermath, Rahimi’s trial has progressed relatively slowly and quietly. In New York, the suspect was indicted on eight federal terrorism charges, including using a weapon of mass destruction, bombing a place of public use, and destroying property by means of fire or explosive. He was also charged on seven counts in New Jersey, including attempted murder, resulting from his shootout in Linden. At his arraignments in both states (in Nov. and Dec. 2016), Rahimi pled “not guilty.” Developments since have largely concerned Rahimi and his team of lawyers

preparing by attempting to foster more beneficial conditions for his trials. In April 2017, for instance, Rahimi and his team made an unsuccessful attempt to get his trial moved from Manhattan to Vermont. In May, they filed a motion to dismiss certain evidence, including statements that he made while hospitalized post-shootout and hair samples collected by an FBI agent while hospitalized. Additionally, in Aug. 2017, a federal judge asserted that the Manhattan jury would not hear about anything relating to the shootout culminating in Rahimi’s arrest in New Jersey. Nonetheless, Rahimi’s trial is currently scheduled to begin in Manhattan in earnest in October. Chelsea Now will follow this story as it develops.

RECOLLECTIONS continued from p. 7

and service was suspended. Residents were asked to remain clear of the area. Residents of the affected block were asked to shelter in place. The number of those injured would eventually climb to 31. Thankfully and remarkably, none of these injuries were grievous and there were no reported fatalities. Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, State Senator Brad Hoylman, Assemblymember Dick Gottfried and I connected with the Mayor’s staff within a secure area in the intersection. The Mayor and Police Commissioner O’Neill, who had just been sworn into his new role two days before, were on their way. When the Mayor and Police Commissioner arrived, my colleagues and I were all escorted onto W. 23rd St. between Sixth and Seventh Aves. and from a distance we witnessed the mangled remains of the dumpster and the damaged building facades for the first time. The world’s press corps had converged on this one spot to hear from the Mayor and Police Commissioner and a host of Homeland Security officials; people who knew more about what had happened than perhaps anyone. It was around this time that news of a secondary device in Chelsea began trickling in. As we had learned from 9/11, misinformation abounds in the chaos

SUSPECT continued from p. 6

few years, and carried out the bombings for related reasons. Meanwhile, the neighborhood made quick work of bouncing back from the attack. Thankfully, none of those affected by the attack were injured seriously, and all were discharged soon after the explosion. Both state and local entities and officials also helped provide services and funds to get afflicted businesses back in shape after the explosion. On the legislative end of things, the bombing also led directly to measures that would help prevent other such incidents. Later in 2016, the Federal Communication Commission voted to update the Wireless Emergency Alert

Photo by William Alatriste/NYC Council

Councilmember Johnson inspected the blast damage — mainly blown-out windows — inside The Townhouse Inn of Chelsea (131 W. 23rd St.).

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September 14, 2017


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