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And Nero Fiddled

“Yond Cassius over there has a lean and hungry look. He thinks too much. Men like him are dangerous.”

Julius Caesar; Act 1 Scene 2

The Town of Huntington Flak Brigade issued a press release on April 29th praising the Board’s recognition of seventeen young poets who were selected for participation in Poetry for the HART Public Art Initiative. Councilwoman Susan Berland presented the winners with certificates signed by members of the Huntington Town Board in an award ceremony at the Walt Whitman Birthplace on April 21.

Now we don’t propose to degrade the good work of our youth. Their labors tell us that not every teen has their nose firmly imbedded in an iPad! These budding artists, their classmates, parents and teachers have every reason to be proud. Congratulations to all.

But we DO mean to suggest that, beyond patting themselves on the back for recognizing talented youngsters, the Town Board ought to be telling us what they are doing to stem the rapidly eroding quality of daily life in Huntington Station.

In addition to seemingly ignore the shootings, police raids, drug arrests, convent burglary, assaults, vehicular homicide, drunk driving, animal cruelty and child endangerment incidents over the last ten days, the Town Fathers – and Mothers – are turning a blind eye and a silent tongue to the festering conditions created by absentee landlords and illegal apartment owners. And their disregard for the ongoing degradation is ruining life in Huntington Station.

In addition to the incidents reported in VT last week http://_wp_link_pla   Suffolk County Police now advise that they arrested Eric Oquendo, 37, of 16 West Jericho Turnpike in Huntington Station on May 4. According to sources, Second Squad Special Operations Team detectives and Second Precinct Gang Unit officers executed a search warrant and arrested Oquendo, charging him with Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance 3rd Degree, three counts of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance 7th Degree and two counts of Criminal Use of Drug Paraphernalia 2nd Degree. In addition, sixty four (64) bags of heroin, assorted prescription narcotics, three cell phones, two scales, packaging materials and $9,400 were also seized.

As listed on the TOH Land Management website, the building at 16 West Jericho Turnpike is owned by absentee landlord NY Ley Realty Corp of Long Island City and is classified as “421 – Restaurants”. It’s a two story structure with apartments on the second floor. New York State Corporation records show that the chief executive officer of NY Ley Realty Corp is Maximo Figueredo of 37-31 76th Street, Jackson Heights.

Earlier in the same day, SCPD arrested two other men for shooting a person at the Huntington Station LIRR Commuter parking lot on April 23. Following their investigation, Second Squad detectives charged Jonattan Canales, and his step-brother Cesar Moncada, with Assault 1st Degree for the shooting.

 Canales, 18, and Moncada, 19, both of 19 Tower St., Huntington Station, are being held at the Second Precinct in Huntington Station. Both were scheduled to be arraigned at First District Court in Central Islip on May 5.

Acording to TOH Land Management, 19 Tower Street is a single family residence owned and occupied by Jose Contreras and Maria Anariba.

Of the myriad criminal incidents we reported over the last twelve days, nearly eighty percent (80%) were perpetrated by individuals living in sites owned by absentee landlords or residing in buildings whose owners have surnames that are considerably different from the accused. Sure; – those residents could be step children, distant relatives; cousin, aunts, uncles; half-brothers; or visitors. But they could be tenants in unlawful apartments, too.

Police Commissioner Timothy Sini’s inauguration pledge to push hard against crime in the Second Precinct seems to be much more than an idle threat. For this first time in quite a few years there is pro-active policing throughout the area.

But the cops can only be as effective as the Town bureaucracy will allow. Without aggressive enforcement of the housing rules by Code Enforcement, the police are swimming upstream!





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