One Injured in West 125th Street Fire

One Injured in West 125th Street Fire Updated March 18, 2012 9:13pm

March 18, 2012 6:49pm | By Tom Liddy, DNAinfo News Editor

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Firefighters battle a blaze at 511 W. 125th St. On March 18, 2012. (Moishe Lichtenstein/

MANHATTAN A person was injured in a fire in a Harlem building Sunday afternoon, authorities said.

The blaze erupted on the third floor of 511 W. 125th St., near Amsterdam Avenue at 6:08 p.m., the FDNY said.

One person suffered minor injuries in the fire, which was brought under control less than a half hour later.


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Inaugural Harlem TEDx Conference Wants to Spark Big Ideas

Inaugural Harlem TEDx Conference Wants to Spark Big Ideas Updated March 19, 2012 9:10am

March 19, 2012 9:10am | By Jeff Mays, DNAinfo Reporter/Producer


TEDxHarlem Executive Producer Imari Oliver said the event is about bringing life to ideas of social innovation. (DNAinfo/Jeff Mays)

HARLEM Harlem has a reputation of being a place of innovative ideas. From the writers of the Harlem Renaissance to Malcolm X speaking on 125th Street and the jazz culture that was curated here, Harlem has always been a place for creativity that has changed the world.

But these days, Harlem is sometimes only thought of as an intellectual hotbed in the historical sense. The organizers of Harlem’s first TEDx event, a group of global conferences whose motto is “ideas worth spreading,” want to change that.

“The world recognizes Harlem as a source of creativity, inspiration and innovation yet we don’t have anything in Harlem that harnesses our voice. It’s a collection of individual voices. We don’t have a vehicle that tells our story of creativity and vision and innovation,” said Marcus Glover, an advertising executive who founded the TEDxHarlem conference.

TEDx conferences are the independent, locally-produced versions of the TED conferences held in annually in Long Beach, Calif., and TEDGlobal in Edinburgh, Scotland.

In a nod to Harlem’s place in history, the March 27 event will be held at one of Harlem’s most legendary venues, the Apollo Theater.

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ITS MENG VS. LANCMAN FOR CONGRESS: Queens Democrats chose Assemblywoman Grace Meng to run for retiring Rep. Gary Ackermans seat and become New Yorks first Asian-American member of Congress last night, but Assemblyman Rory Lancman plans a primary challenge anyway:


* Gov. Andrew Cuomo expects Medicaid Inspector General James Cox to perform less adversarial audits of healthcare providers after dismissing his fraud-busting predecessor, James Sheehan, under pressure from the industry, the New York Times says:

* Younger members of the Assembly were put off by Speaker Sheldon Silvers arm-twisting for votes last week, especially since more senior members of the body werent subjected to such tough treatment, Ken Lovett writes in the Daily News:

* The Senate Democrats unsettled leadership situation and poor performance while in the majority factored into Gov. Andrew Cuomos decision to sign off on gerrymandered district lines, Fred Dicker writes in the Post:

* A slew of well-financed and influential groups are lining up to carve up, promote or kill a deal to allow for casinos in New York, the Times Union reports:

* Comptroller John Liu has awarded $6 million in contracts to manage city pension funds to a firm under investigation by New York federal and state prosecutors over claims it ripped off millions from public-employee pension systems around the world, the Post reports:

*Mayor Michael Bloomberg has attempted to maintain ties with his hometown of Medford, Mass., in a number of small ways, but residents see him as a big city guy, the Times writes:


* City Council Speaker Christine Quinn shows off her new, slimmer figure in a photo spread in the new issue of Elle on sale this week, the Post said:

* The Posts David Seifman said City Council members want to spend the citys $466 million settlement from the CityTime scandal on restoring cuts to social services, complicating the usual spring budget dance:

* Gov. Andrew Cuomos use of messages of necessity to pass last weeks pension and redistricting compromise in the middle of the night is drawing fresh criticism, the Associated Press said:


SOA2 !*911 Audio Link of Racist Murder of Trayvon Martin

Trayvon Martin Case: 911 Audio Released Of Teen Allegedly Shot By Neighborhood Watch Captain (AUDIO)
SANFORD, Fla. Police have released audio 911 tapes in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed teenager allegedly killed by a neighborhood watch captain while walking home from a store.

In eight chilling recordings, made the night of February 26, listeners can hear the frightened voices of neighbors calling to report screams for help, gunshots and then that someone was dead.

In perhaps the most disturbing of the recordings, a frightened voice cries out for help and pleading “No! No!” and then wailing.

And for the first time, we hear the voice of George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch captain who admitted to police that he shot Martin, who was walking home from a convenience store to his father’s home in the gated community. Zimmerman has not been arrested or charged in the shooting.

Editor’s Note: The following recordings and their transcriptions below contain strong language that some readers may find objectionable.

You can listen to the audio from Zimmerman’s call here.

“This guy looks like he’s up to no good, or he’s on drugs or something,” Zimmerman tells the 911 operator. “He’s just staring, looking at all the houses. Now he’s coming toward me. He’s got his hand in his waistband. Something’s wrong with him.”

Zimmerman described Martin as wearing a hoodie and sweatpants or jeans. He continues: “He’s coming to check me out. He’s got something in his hands. I don’t know what his deal is. Can we get an officer over here?”

“These assholes always get away,” he says to the operator. Zimmerman is then heard giving directions to the dispatcher. “Shit, he’s running,” Zimmerman says.

“Are you following him?” the dispatcher asks.

“Yes,” Zimmerman responds.

“We don’t need you to do that,” the dispatcher says.

In other recordings, callers tell the 911 dispatcher that someone has been shot. One person tells the dispatcher that two guys were wrestling behind his back porch and that one of them was yelling for help. Then the male caller stammers in shock. “I’m pretty sure the guy is dead … Oh, my God! … The black guy looks like he’s been shot and he’s dead.”

“The guy on top has a white T-shirt,” another caller said.

“Is he on top of someone?” the operator asks.

“Mmmhmmm,” a female caller responds.

Yet another caller says, “Someone was screaming ‘Help! help! help!’ Then I heard a gunshot.”

One caller, a teenage boy, said that as he was walking his dog, “I saw a man laying on the ground that needed help. He was screaming.”

Then, he told the operator, he heard a gunshot and said the screaming stopped.

Martin’s family and their attorneys were allowed to hear the audio before it was made public.

“You hear a shot, a clear shot, that we can only assume is a warning shot,” said Natalie Jackson, a family attorney. “Then a 17-year-old boy is begging for his life. Everything tells me that that was Trayvon Martin.”

Tracy Martin, the teenager’s father, broke down crying as he listened to the audio on Friday, the family lawyers said. “My son was crying for help, and he still shot him,” Tracy Martin, the teenager’s father said, according to Benjamin Crump, another family attorney.

The local state attorney is reviewing the investigation and will decide whether to prosecute the volunteer watchman.

Police in Sanford initially told Martin’s family that Zimmerman had not been arrested because he had a “squeaky clean” record, according to Tracy Martin. Zimmerman had been arrested in 2005 on charges of resisting arrest with violence and battery on a law enforcement officer, according to court records. Those charges were later dropped.

“Do we really believe that if Trayvon Martin would have pulled the trigger, he would not be arrested?” said Crump. “This is obviously a cover-up, and we need a sweeping overhaul of the Sanford Police Department.”

Sanford Mayor Jeff Triplett said he spent Thursday meeting with the state attorney’s office discussing the release of the tapes. “It was as simple as us saying, ‘We’re going to do this, what do you think?'” Triplett told HuffPost.

Earlier Friday, Triplett met with Rep. Corrine Brown (D-Fla.), Police Chief Bill Lee and city manager Norton Bonaparte to discuss the 911 recording.

The police chief serves at the pleasure of the city manager. Bonaparte was asked by HuffPost whether the furor jeapordizes Lee’s job. “We’re reviewing all of our options at this point,” he said, adding that he currently sees “no reason” to remove Lee.

Zimmerman had been the subject of earlier complaints by residents of the gated community in which he and Martin’s family lived. At an emergency homeowner’s association meeting earlier this month, “one man was
escorted out because he openly expressed his frustration because he had previously contacted the Sanford Police Department about Zimmerman approaching him and even coming to his home,” a resident wrote in an email to HuffPost. “It was also made known that there had been several complaints about George Zimmerman and his tactics” in his neighborhood watch captain role.

The case has drawn national attention and has outraged many residents of Sanford, a town about 20 miles north of Orlando, particularly in the African-American community. Many have suggested a history of strained relations between the police department and blacks.