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Sheldon Silver Pleads Not Guilty; US Attorney Accused of Creating a ‘Firestorm’

Silver back in the good ol' days. (Photo: Mary Reinholz)

Silver back in the good ol’ days. (Photo: Mary Reinholz)

Lower East Side assemblyman Sheldon Silver pled not guilty to federal corruption charges during his arraignment yesterday, proclaiming after the hearing that he expected to be vindicated in court.

His lawyers, meanwhile, claimed he had already been convicted in the press and accused U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara of orchestrating a “media firestorm” against their client before a single witness had been called. They filed a motion to dismiss the indictment that was handed down by a grand jury last week, contending the proceedings may have been tainted by pre-trial publicity.
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Amid Spike In Crime, Police On The Lookout For Armed Robber In East Village

(Photo: Jaime Cone)

(Photo: Jaime Cone)

Bitter blasts from Old Man Winter failed to put a freeze on crime in the NYPD’s 9th precinct. The East Village experienced spikes in felony assaults, grand larcenies and robberies over 28 days starting in the last week of January when compared to the same period last year, according to Deputy Inspector Peter J. Venice, the precinct’s commanding officer.
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With Indictment Looming, What’s Next For Sheldon Silver?

(Photo: Mary Reinholz)

(Photo: Mary Reinholz)

Fallen assembly speaker Sheldon Silver could be indicted any day now, but where will his case go from there?

After filing their complaint on Jan 22, government prosecutors had 30 days to obtain an indictment against the Lower East Side pol, according to his attorney. It hasn’t come down yet, but it may well happen during a court hearing scheduled for Feb. 23 (assuming Silver doesn’t request an extension) or even sooner, according to a spokesperson for Preet Bharara, U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of New York.
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Silver Helped Knickerbocker Village Weather the Storms, Tenants Say

Sheldon Silver in 2013, announcing Sandy relief funds for Knickerbocker Village.

Sheldon Silver in 2013, announcing Sandy relief funds for Knickerbocker Village.

It’s safe to say the political tide has turned against Sheldon Silver, as Democrats in the State Assembly press him to resign. But tenants of Knickerbocker Village continue to shower him with praise for having helped them rebound from Superstorm Sandy. (It’s the kind of praise Andrew Cuomo is hurting for this morning, in the wake of the blizzard that wasn’t.) When the longtime Assembly speaker was arrested on corruption charges Thursday, some of those who watched him in action during the crisis at the Lower East Side complex were nothing short of blown away.
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Williamsburg Hotel Wins Early Support For Rooftop Water-Tower Lounge

Plans for the hotel. (Photo: Mary Reinholz)

Plans for the hotel. (Photo: Mary Reinholz)

A forthcoming Williamsburg hotel’s bid to pour liquor won the tentative support of a Community Board 1 committee last night, but not before co-chair Thomas J. Burrows blasted hoteliers for building in the hot neighborhood without any input from the community “until you want a liquor license.”
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'We're in the Eye of the Storm': Brooklyn's Undocumented Immigrants Get Ready For Reform

(Photos: Mary Reinholz)

(Photos: Mary Reinholz)

Fernando Canovas has lived in the shadow of the law for 23 years, working as a cook in Queens and never visiting a doctor’s office in part because of problems with his ID. “I don’t get sick,” said the 43-year-old undocumented immigrant from Mexico City on a recent late afternoon.
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Death By Tire Swing in Tompkins Square Park Was a ‘Terrible Tragedy’

The suspect

The suspect in last week’s shooting.

The East Village’s commanding officer gave a gut-wrenching account last night of how a 39-year-old man was fatally hit by a tire swing in Tompkins Square Park.

“It’s a terrible tragedy” said Deputy Inspector Peter J. Venice at a monthly Community Council meeting, describing how the Harlem man was playing with his four-year-old niece and swinging the tire Monday afternoon. It had metal in it and struck him in the face.
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Cops Nab East Village Burglary Suspect, On Alert After Two Shootings

An image of the suspect in a string of East Village burglaries.

An image of the suspect in a string of East Village burglaries.

Police are concerned that two disturbing “back to back” shootings in the East Village will result in retaliation from “unhappy” people who know the injured victims, the Ninth Precinct’s commanding officer revealed during a meeting with residents.
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Paul Krassner On Harvey Milk, the Yippies, and Talking to Dolphins After Dropping Acid

(Photo courtesy of Paul Krassner)

(Photo courtesy of Paul Krassner)

Paul Krassner sometimes gets touted as a forerunner to comics like Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, who blend fact and fiction into combustible political cocktails. But the Daily Show can seem lame and tame compared to The Realist, launched in 1958 when Krassner was a Mad magazine contributor living in the East Village.
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Protesters Fracked Up Andrew Cuomo’s Book Signing

(Photo: Mary Reinholz)

(Photo: Mary Reinholz)

It’s safe to say Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s appearance at Barnes & Noble in Union Square last night wasn’t quite as electrifying as Russell Brand’s at the Strand, nor did he draw the throngs that wrapped around the block for Hillary Clinton’s appearance in June. But he did rile up a group of protesters as he signed copies of his first book, a hefty tome titled All Things Possible: Setbacks and Success in Politics and Life.
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