Now there's an understatement if I ever saw one.Originally Posted by lofter1
Gotta say that the gang here seems much more thoughtful and better informed than the posters over there ...Originally Posted by Schadenfrau
Now there's an understatement if I ever saw one.Originally Posted by lofter1
I somehow found this site the night that JB died. I was searching for articles about his death. I am his dad's cousin and of his dad's generation. We are one small entity of his family that lives in Dallas. I last saw JB at his mom's funeral in October. I had not seen him prior to that since he was elementary age. When I visited with him a few months ago I immediately knew he (and his sister) were exceptional. I have been reading what everyone is posting about him. I spent several hours reading many of his posts. I learned a lot about JB. From all of you I learned that he knew how to love and to live life to the fullest. From his posts and yours it became evident how brilliant he was. He obviously took life and all it has to offer and lived it to the fullest. You also spoke of his inspiring compassion. It seems like we could all learn a considerable amount from JB about making this world a better place. I hope we will keep his rememberance by trying to be more like him.
This site allowed me to feel like I have had a conversation with JB and a conversation with many of his friends and for that I am sincerely grateful.
Thank you. Libby
I am following the news on the arrest of the alledged assailants of JB (our TLOZ). I have not yet heard from the parks department on creating a living and / or lasting memorial in a Harlem or Washington Heights park to JB. The situation seems fluid and has made me hesitate in pursuing the reward fund option.
I wanted to see if we still want to pursue creating a reward fund with people now in custody or do we want to see what the arrests bear out and continue to consider a memorial of some type. It is fair to say that we want to do something, but is a reward at this moment where we want to focus our efforts?
4 Harlem Teenagers Charged in Student's Death During Robbery
By ANDREW JACOBS
April 10, 2006
The police have arrested four Harlem teenagers and charged them with the robbery and murder of a New York University student who died earlier this month after he was chased onto 125th Street and hit by a car.
Although law enforcement officials had been investigating the incident as a possible bias crime, citing an anonymous witness who said he heard one of the attackers, who were black, yell, "Get the white guy," they determined that the assault on the student, Broderick J. Hehman, was instead a robbery gone awry.
Mr. Hehman, a 20-year-old junior who lived on the Upper East Side, was hit by a silver Mercedes-Benz the night of April 1 as he tried to escape five teenagers who had accosted him as he walked to a friend's apartment to play video games. He died four days later, never having regained consciousness.
Over the weekend, investigators arrested four friends who they say tried to rob Mr. Hehman and may be responsible for other street robberies in East Harlem. Authorities are still seeking the fifth attacker.
The youths, two 13-year-olds and two 15-year-olds, will be charged as adults, according to the Manhattan district attorney's office. They face nine years to life if convicted.
Based on interviews with witnesses and confessions from three of those arrested, investigators decided that bias did not play a role in the selection of Mr. Hehman as a victim, said Deputy Inspector Michael Osgood, the commanding officer of the Police Department's Hate Crimes Unit.
"The purpose was to take his money, not to assault him because of his identity," he said, adding that although one of the attackers may have used racist language during the chase, that in itself did not make the incident a bias crime. "It was a gratuitous slur," he said.
The events that led to Mr. Hehman's death began at 8:15 that Saturday night, when the youths, according to police, gathered on the corner of 126th Street and Lexington Avenue to plot a robbery. They quickly spotted their mark — another man, the police said — but backed off when a patrol car passed. A few minutes later, when Mr. Broderick emerged by the Lexington Avenue line subway station at 125th Street, the boys decided that they had found an easy target.
As part of their tactic, two of them moved in front of Mr. Hehman and three lingered behind, the police said. One block west, as he walked beneath the Metro-North Railroad tracks on Park Avenue talking on his cellphone, they made their move. After the teenagers surrounded Mr. Hehman, investigators said, one of the youths placed him in a bear hug, while another rifled through his pockets.
The police say they believe that another of the youths punched him in the face. Moments later, Mr. Hehman broke free. With his attackers shouting and in pursuit, he darted into 125th Street, heavy with traffic, and was hit by a car. The driver stopped and the youths fled. According to their own accounts, they came away with nothing.
For more than a week, the police were stymied in their investigation. On a hunch, they viewed surveillance tapes from a McDonald's on 125th Street that had been damaged by a group of teenagers eight days earlier. Although the police said that none of the arrested youths took part in that melee, some of those identified in the videos had heard about the attack on Mr. Hehman and led police to the suspects, who were taken into custody on Saturday.
Friends and relatives of the accused youths described them as well-behaved and unlikely participants in a violent assault. Rodney Jenkins, a grandfather of one of the 15-year-olds, said he spoiled his grandson so he would never be lured into the thuggery that upends the lives of so many young black men.
"He has a jacket for every day of the week and stack of jeans," Mr. Jenkins said. "We do that so he won't have to go to the street to sell drugs."
Diana Fox, 23, who lives across the hall from one of the 13-year-olds, said he was a bookish boy with a stutter who once helped her rid her apartment of a rat. She said, "I can only say good things" about him.
Mr. Hehman's father and sister, stopped as they entered their building yesterday, said they did not want to talk. According to an online profile Mr. Hehman, known to his friends as J. B., was a karaoke enthusiast, a Prince fan and self-effacingly neurotic about his health. Before his death he had been awaiting word about an internship with the city's Parks and Recreation Department. One of the last papers he turned in for his major, metropolitan studies, was about urban violence.
Norman Siegel, a civil rights lawyer and former executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, expressed disappointment at the department's decision not to treat Mr. Hehman's death as a bias attack. He said he thought the police were shying away from the hate-crime designation for political reasons.
"They don't want to have increased racial tension, racial divisiveness and violence," he said. "They'd rather ignore what's painfully real, which is that there are still racial tensions in this town."
Mr. Siegel said he would ask Robert M. Morgenthau, the Manhattan district attorney, to consider reclassifying the crime as bias-motivated. A spokeswoman for the district attorney declined to comment on the case but said it was still being investigated.
New York State's hate-crime law, passed in 2000, metes out harsher penalties for those who single out victims based on race, religion or sexual orientation.
Frederick M. Lawrence, the author of "Punishing Hate: Bias Crimes Under American Law" and the dean of George Washington University Law School, said the state's hate-crime statute places a high burden of proof on the authorities. Prosecutors have to prove what someone was thinking when they committed a crime, he said, "and that's not an easy thing to do."
Janon Fisher and Kate Hammer contributed reporting for this article.
Copyright 2006The New York Times Company
Just wanted to share my thoughts -
I'm obviously not a frequent poster, but I've read the WNY boards regularly since 2002 and was very familiar with TLOZ's insightful postings. I hadn't checked the forum this week and am just now learning that TLOZ was the victim of this terrible tragedy which I've been following all week. I've been especially drawn into this story because the fact that JB was struck down in a sketchy neighborhood reminded me of myself - I grew up in Jersey City and have always loved exploring hoods off the beaten path. I often went to grimey areas against the advice of others and know what it's like to be taunted by packs of teens looking to start trouble. When you're outnumbered, you're at the mercy of the bullies and can only wait calmly for the situation to simmer down on its own.
I guess it was no surprise that TLOZ was a member of the very same forum. Anyway, I am still in shock and deeply saddened that TLOZ lost his life so senselessly. I'll be happy to donate money in his memory or otherwise contribute to a memorial in his honor. I work in the Financial District and, if there's a meet-up to discuss plans for a memorial, I'll be able to meet up.
REST IN PEACE TLOZ, YOU WILL BE MISSED
- AP / tone99loc
"investigators decided that bias did not play a role in the selection of Mr. Hehman as a victim."
"It was a gratuitous slur," he said.
Reports: 5th Suspect Sought In NYU Student's Death
UPDATED: 7:18 am EDT April 10, 2006
NEW YORK -- Police are searching for a fifth suspect in the death of a university student who was hit by a car last week in Harlem while fleeing a group of youths, according to published reports.
Broderick Hehman, 20, a junior at New York University, darted into traffic at 125th Street and Park Avenue on April 1 and was hit by a silver Mercedes-Benz, police said. He died Tuesday.
The existence of a fifth suspect was reported in Monday editions of multiple city newspapers.
A witness told police that just before the accident he saw a group of youths trying to attack Hehman and shouting, "Get the white boy!"
But prosecutors so far have declined to label the case a hate crime, which would bring added penalties.
"The purpose was to take his money, not to assault him because of his identity," Deputy Inspector Michael Osgood, the commanding officer of the police department's Hate Crimes Unit, told The New York Times.
Hassan Mayfield and Andre Johnson, both 15, and Denzel Fell and Bobby Guzman, both 13, were arrested Saturday on charges of second-degree murder and second-degree attempted robbery, police said. The four, all black or Hispanic, were being charged as adults, police said.
All were in custody and booked Sunday.
Johnson's lawyer said his client claims he's innocent.
"What he's maintained to me is that he's not involved in this in a way that would implicate him in any kind of murder," attorney Adam Freedman said.
A relative of Guzman, who identified himself as Uncle Louie, said his nephew is a good pupil who never missed school and had awards for attendance.
"He's not a murderer," the uncle said while fighting back tears outside a Harlem police station. "He's a straight-A kid."
No telephone numbers could be found for the other two boys.
From The NY Daily News:
From Washinton Square NewsHehman was jumped after an earlier plan to mug a Latino man was foiled when the teens saw a passing police cruiser, cops said.
Norman Siegel, a former director of the New York Civil Liberties Union and civil rights lawyer, told the New York Times that the police department’s decision not to treat Hehman’s death as a bias crime was politically motivated, and said he would petition New York district attorney Robert Morgenthau to reconsider the charges.
“They don’t want to have increased racial tension, racial divisiveness and violence,” he told the Times. “They’d rather ignore what’s painfully real, which is that there are still racial tensions in this town.”
Close friends of Hehman, however, said they are unhappy that media outlets are attributing unfair racial overtones to the crime. The New York Post, for example, ran an article on Hehman with the headline that read “Hate Killed NYU Kid.”
“J.B. would have frowned upon his death being turned into a headline that perpetuates racial violence,” said a friend of Hehman, who spoke to WSN under the condition of anonymity. “His death as a spectacle would have only pissed him off.”
Originally Posted by Fabrizio
Fabrizio...... You will find the following quote instructive as to "why" this "ridiculous" statement can stand unchallenged in NYC.
City Journal 06
by Michael Knox Beran
The double standard is apparent in the 1996 Romer v. Evans case, in which the Court struck down an amendment to Colorado’s constitution that prohibited the creation of special rights (beyond those which all citizens enjoy) for gays. In his dissent in Romer, Justice Scalia argued that the Court, forsaking its role as neutral umpire in a pluralist society, had chosen “to take sides” in a “culture war” and impose upon the nation values “favored by the elite class from which the Members of this institution [the Court itself] are selected.” The old standard of “equal protection of the laws” was being superseded, Scalia maintained, by a “novel and extravagant constitutional doctrine” of “preferential treatment under the laws” for views at odds with “traditional American values.”
P.S. The issue here is the Double Standard.....that upsets me: the fact that this case deals with gay rights is irrelevant to the subance of the matter. He was the victim of Hate crime....just as I have been on several occosaians in the same vicinity. This is WRONG.
Last edited by infoshare; April 10th, 2006 at 10:28 AM.
My faith follows that people are forgiven. Personally I forgive these kids. I also don´t feel that they should be tried as adults. To me that´s just weird. Immoral. They should be tried as juveniles... as children and given treatment proper for their age....and their parents should be investigated as well. On the other hand, if a racial taunt was used, or race was the motivating factor, then that should not be glossed over. It should be noted... talked about...preached about. Calling it a "gratuitous comment" ....is flaming racial tensions.
He was 'easy mark'
Race not main motive in student slay: cops
BY NICOLE BODE, TAMER EL-GHOBASHY, TONY SCLAFANI and NANCY DILLON
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS
NY Daily News
April 10, 2006
These are kids accused of causing Harlem traffic death
Four young teens busted in the slaying of an NYU student were an "organized robbery team" that stalked and pummeled the 20-year-old before chasing him into the path of a car, cops said yesterday.
" 'We were trying to rob this guy and he got hit by a car,' " one teen allegedly blabbed to a witness after the tragic mugging-turned-murder of John Brod.erick Hehman on E. 125th St.
Hassan Mayfield and Andre Johnson, both 15, and Denzel Fell and Bobby Guzman, both 13, all of Harlem, were charged as adults yesterday with second-degree murder. Johnson and Mayfield were arraigned last night and held without bail. Another teen was being sought.
The gang of five had sized up the slightly built Hehman as "an easy mark" - and at least one shouted "Get the white boy!" before chasing him into the path of a Mercedes-Benz about 8:30 p.m. on April 1, cops said.
Hehman, a popular metropolitan studies student who lived on the upper East Side, died four days later at Harlem Hospital.
"He was a very gentle and docile person," said Deputy Inspector Michael Osgood, commander of the NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force. "He's never been in a fight. We believe they sized him up to be an easy mark."
A police source described the roving teens as a band of neighborhood toughs "who thought they owned the street."
Osgood said the youths grouped as an "organized robbery team" and set on making a quick - and dirty - buck.
"The substantial reason (for the attack) was economic, not the victim's (racial) identity," said Osgood, adding that three of the four teens had made "full confessions."
Hehman was jumped after an earlier plan to mug a Latino man was foiled when the teens saw a passing police cruiser, cops said.
The teens allegedly targeted Hehman after he emerged alone from the train station at Lexington and 125th St., police said.
A source said the youths followed Hehman to a Popeyes Chicken on 125th and Park Ave. After Hehman gave a dollar to a homeless man, the young thugs pounced, officials said.
Two of the five moved ahead of Hehman and the other three trapped him from behind, cops said. They grabbed and punched him - and chased him into the street .after he broke free of a bear hug, officials said.
Police said they nabbed four of the suspects after grilling a different group of teens who were caught vandalizing a McDonald's last month.
Cops said they know the identity of Hehman's fifth attacker and were looking for him.
Relatives described the troubled teens as neighborhood buddies who played basketball together. The two oldest boys attend A. Philip Randolph High School.
"He's just a young naive kid who was with the wrong crowd. . . . He's no murderer," said Louie Rodriguez, 42, Guzman's uncle. "He's never been in trouble before," said Johnson's grandmother Bernice Johnson. "It's a gang of boys, and each one of them is putting it on the other."
Hehman's father and sister declined to comment yesterday, but an upper East Side neighbor described Hehman as a "polite, respectful young man."
"I saw him leaving the night it happened," said neighbor John Barnes, 45. "It's truly a case of 'Only the good die young.' "
With Tanyanika Samuels and Jess Wisloski
All contents © 2006 Daily News, L.P.
Guys, try not to get too passionate in the discussion here.
We may need to split it off into another thread if we start talking about the issue rather than TLOZ and than night....
I agree Fab,,,,But this must go down as a hate crime as a matter of LEGAL RECORD.Originally Posted by Fabrizio
To Libby (the family member) you must make this event KNOWN in your local community and RALLY support for TLOZ.....nobody THAT DAY stood up for him.......I Will.
Libby please PM me for any support......I am prepared to Testify regarding TWO racial incidents.......and YES .......one was on 125th STREET.
This matter can not be dismissed.
P.S. .......And lofter....you should be ashamed of your self......THat article you posted is towing the "party line" and YOU know it. SHAME
Last edited by infoshare; April 10th, 2006 at 12:19 PM.
I am sorry, but I personally am not able to discuss forgiveness yet. Those "kids" aren't kids the way a 15 year old in the year 1800 was a kid. They are elements dangerous to society, as evidenced by the murder of our dear friend. They knew right from wrong. They knew it was wrong to gang rob somebody. A fierce, uncompromising response to "juvenile" crime is necessary to set an example of intolerance. Perhaps I need forgiveness for thinking,"Too bad it has to be these worthless thugs. Their parents are probably as messed up as they are, and I don't care if they rot." That's how I feel right now.
Maybe it is the anger talking. I'm familiar with the soft stance toward juvenile crime in Brazil, and look at the result. Kids literally get away with murder every day.