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Around Brooklyn: Software developer for Brooklyn DA is arrested

April 2, 2020 Editorial Staff

Software developer for Brooklyn DA is arrested

A software developer for the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office was arrested Monday after he was caught by cops waving a gun, according to the New York Post. Matthew Barton was arrested after midnight when police officers from the 88th Precinct in Fort Greene came upon him wielding the weapon, police said. Barton reviews NYPD body camera footage for the DA’s Office, the Post said. Charges against him are pending.

Lawyers seek release of vulnerable prisoners

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Public defenders have filed a lawsuit to demand the release of more than 500 “medically vulnerable” prisoners from the federal Metropolitan Detention Center in Sunset Park, according to the New York Post. Lawyers for the inmates charged that the facility’s warden has identified 537 prisoners as having an elevated risk of catching the coronavirus. The attorneys are “deeply concerned that our clients will be exposed, sickened, or potentially face serious illness or death because of MDC’s inadequate and slow response to this public health crisis, and its lack of medical facilities,” Deidre von Dornum of the Federal Defenders of New York wrote in court papers.

Brooklyn Tech alumni donate 800 bottles of hand sanitizers

The Brooklyn Tech Alumni Foundation is donating 800 personal-size bottles of Purell hand sanitizer to IBT Local 202 for distribution among its members working at the Hunts Point Produce Market in the Bronx. The market is the main hub for the distribution of fresh vegetables and fruit to grocery stores in New York City.  These are essential workers still making deliveries. The Alumni Foundation had purchased the Purell in preparation for its annual homecoming, which takes place at Brooklyn Technical High School every March. The foundation postponed homecoming until after the epidemic is resolved.

Forbes analyzes RE ‘quarter that started strong’

Forbes yesterday analyzed the real estate quarter that just ended. “The New York real estate market began 2020 with an unusually strong January, with surging buyer interest in a wide number of properties spanning all price ranges.” At that time, and in early February, the coronavirus seemed distant, since there were no cases in the U.S. yet. By the beginning of March, things began to look more serious. “Both buyers and sellers became apprehensive about taking the risk of infection; agents increasingly felt the same. By the time the governor urged New Yorkers to stay at home on March 20, almost all real estate activity in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens had already ceased,” the well-known business magazine said.


Affordable housing lottery opens in East New York

An affordable housing lottery has opened for 199 units in a nine-story building at 911 Erskine St. in East New York, according to Brownstoner. The building under construction is one of eight planned as part of the redevelopment of the former Brooklyn Developmental Center site. Of the affordable apartments, there are seven studios, 87 one-bedroom units, 63 two-bedroom units and 42 three-bedroom units. Monthly rents start at $328 and top out at $1,504. Eligible incomes range between $13,440 and $79,440 for households of one to seven people, Brownstoner said.

St. Francis College admissions go online

St. Francis College announced recently that the school is adapting to the COVID-19 outbreak by offering online events to ensure prospective students don’t miss opportunities to connect. Students considering attending St. Francis College are now participating in online programming to learn about the college’s degree programs, courses and community, thanks to a series of events developed by the SFC Admissions Office. These new remote, web-based events – which include one-on-one and group information sessions – replace the popular roster of real-world admissions events that typically attract hundreds of prospective students and their families to the college’s admissions event.

‘Virtual First Saturday’ at Brooklyn Museum

The Brooklyn Museum, like all museums, may be closed indefinitely, but the institution will continue its tradition of welcoming the public free of charge the first Saturday of every month as it has done for 20 years, according to Artnet News. Tune in to the museum’s YouTube channel to catch a foil-embossing demonstration followed by a teen variety show, music from Adeline and DJ Amber Valentine, and a disco-themed performance by drag queens from Brooklyn’s House of Bushwig. The virtual performances take place from 6 to 10 p.m.

Tom’s Restaurant is seeking help

Tom’s Restaurant at 782 Washington Ave., Prospect Heights, has been there since 1936. It was originally an ice-cream shop and is now a breakfast and lunch institution, according to Forbes. Jimmy Kokotas, Tom’s third-generation owner, has turned Tom’s into a neighborhood hot spot known for pancakes and all-day breakfasts. Now, however, the lines have come to a halt, and Kokotas is seeking government grants and loans to save the restaurant. “I know the city has never seen anything like this, but it’s bad,” he said.

Adams wants testing facility on Rikers

Borough President Eric Adams yesterday joined New York City Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association President Elias Husamudeen in front of the entrance to Rikers Island to demand that the city Department of Correction take swift action to protect the health and safety of Correction officers, medical staff, civilians, and inmates. “In recent days, the number of confirmed cases among those on Rikers Island has risen dramatically,” he said Adams supported calls by COBA to create a testing site on the island and to create a task force to implement proper safety protocols, including social distancing, in the facilities.

Gowanus Dredgers help small businesses

Members of the Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club launched a series of raffles last week to help local entrepreneurs and artists who have been facing financial loss due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to the Brooklyn Paper.  “We’re really trying to do something that keeps both the small businesses and the arts afloat,” Canoe Club Captain Brad Vogel told the publication. Earlier this month, the canoers pooled their resources to buy $2,000 worth of gift certificates and merchandise from small businesses in the neighborhood to get cash into the pockets of local restaurateurs and retailers.

Cuomo budget could affect local hospitals

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration last month proposed significant cuts to the state budget that could lead to a $38 million funding decrease for central Brooklyn hospitals, according to the Brooklyn Paper.  “The proposed cuts to our hospitals in central Brooklyn are cruel, inhumane and unacceptable,” wrote State Sen. Zellnor Myrie and Assemblymember Diana Richardson in a letter to Cuomo. Statewide, the Cuomo-appointed Medicaid Redesign Panel recommended $400 million in cuts to Medicaid spending — $186 million of which would affect New York City’s public hospital system.

Cyclones got championship rings just before shutdown

On March 11, the New York Mets presented championship rings to members of last year’s Brooklyn Cyclones, just two days before Major League Baseball shut down its training camps due to the coronavirus, according to the Brooklyn Reporter website. All the members of last season’s team, with one exception, were presented with their 2019 New York Penn League Championship rings in a pregame ceremony before the Mets played the St. Louis Cardinals. The missing member, Jake Mangum, opted to play in his assigned morning spring training game “to get some exposure” playing with Mets major leaguers. The event was held in Clover Park in Port St. Lucie, Florida.

New Instagram show: “Love Is Quarantine”

Many people are fans of the reality dating show on Netflix, “Love is Blind.” Older people will remember the 1960s middle-of-the-road hit song, “Love Is Blue.” Now, two Brooklyn roommates, Rance Nix and Thi Q. Lam, have created a new Instagram show, “Love Is Quarantine.” Each “season” lasts for one show only, according to PIX11. On the show, singles try to find a match and fall for each other without seeing each other face to face, only speaking to each other while in isolation pods.

Compiled by Raanan Geberer.


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  1. Mieczyslaw Midura

    Lore Croghan you and your walks through Brooklyn neighborhoods are a treasure.You should collect them in the book for future historians.
    Mitch from Bay Ridge