New York City has always had its hawk-eyed snoops - just think of Hitchcock's classic "Rear Window" - but now a growing network of surveillance cameras is making the city a stage. You'd better be ready for your closeup. Just ask the two security guys recently caught on tape pilfering from the luggage at JFK Airport. Considering today's technology, they should have known they were being watched. The most recent survey by the New York Civil Liberties Union spotted over 8,000 cameras across the city. The NYPD's proposed "Ring of Steel" plan for midtown would add 3,000 more. And then there are the cameras in ATMs, stores and private buildings, and in the cell phones being carried by vigilant New Yorkers, numbering millions on the subways and streets every day. The footage and photos can establish alibis or ruin reputations, help capture criminals and memorialize meltdowns. They make for addictive viewing, but also pose the question: When are we really alone? "We're on our way to … [Read more...] about With surveillance cameras around New York City, you’re being watched
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Federal investigators have questioned two men whose photographs were shown to a Muslim religious leader along with a picture of an Afghan immigrant accused of plotting a bomb attack in New York City. Adis Medunjanin, a 24-year-old Bosnian immigrant, met voluntarily with investigators for 14 hours, said Robert Gottlieb, a New York lawyer representing him. Zarein Ahmedzay, a 24-year-old New York City cab driver, also was interviewed by the FBI, said his brother, Nazir Ahmedzay. Both men's photos were among four shown to Ahmad Wais Afzali, an imam at a Queens mosque accused of tipping off Najibullah Zazi (nah-jee-BOO'-lah ZAH'-zee) that New York Police Department detectives were searching for him. Ron Kuby, a New York lawyer representing the imam, confirmed that detectives showed Afzali photos of Medunjanin and Ahmedzay along with Zazi's. Naiz Kahn, a high school friend of Zazi's who allowed him to stay in his Queens apartment last month when prosecutors say Zazi was preparing his … [Read more...] about Feds question 2 others in alleged New York City terror plot; Najibullah Zazi’s father pleads not gui
Much has changed for the "Real Housewives of New York City" over the past year - and that was very obvious at Kelly Bensimon's Halloween bash at Espace in N.Y.C. on Saturday night. After being scorned by the other ladies for her late arrival at her party on the 31st of 2008 (she came, dressed as a Playboy bunny, two hours late), Kelly did a complete 180 for her Joonbug.com-sponsored fete this time around. "She was mortified when that show aired last year," a source close to the former model dishes. "She is really trying to look better in front of the cameras this season."And it looks like Miz Bensimon is succeeding, she showed up right on time and even gave up her VIP table to hang out in the crowd. "She was dancing and saying hi to everyone," another partygoer said. "A lot of people were kind of shocked at how nice she was being." Former frenemy and co-star Jill Zarin even came (dressed as Poison Ivy from "Batman & Robin"), and the two were inseparable from the moment Zarin … [Read more...] about ‘Real Housewives of New York City’ star Kelly Bensimon changes tune, pals up with Jill Zarin
A new Web site and visitor center partnered by Google and Travelocity will help tourists and residents find New York City's best shows and hottest restaurants.Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined tourism officials Wednesday to introduce the NYC Information Center in midtown Manhattan.The new $1.8 million visitor center, a few blocks north of Times Square, replaces one that closed in July. Wall-mounted information kiosks available in nine languages will offer transportation tips and services. The center will also sell MetroCards and tickets to top attractions.City officials also introduced a new Web site, www.NYCgo.com, that will feature a comprehensive calendar of the city's cultural events.The Web site will allow visitors to create personal profiles and review venues and events. They will be able to use Travelocity to book hotels, flights and car rentals.Both the visitor center and the Web site will offer Google Maps for trip planning. At the center, interactive tables will allow users to … [Read more...] about New York City unveils virtual tourist center
Who wants to buy some "Real" stuff?! The "Real Housewives of New York City" returns for a second season Tuesday - and the hit reality show's stars have puh-lenty of their own specialty products for fans to purchase. How much does it cost to keep up with the housewives? Find out, below. Bethenny FrankelArguably the busiest housewife, Bethenny Frankel has a lot of projects cooking. The natural food chef is gearing up to release her first book, "Naturally Thin: Unleash your SkinnyGirl and Free Yourself from a Lifetime of Dieting," in March. The tome, chock full of healthy tips and recipes, is currently available on pre-order at Amazon.com for $10.88. Frankel is also penning "Naturally Thin: Recipes to be a Skinnygirl for Life," "Skinnygirl's Guide to Cocktails" and "Skinnygirl's Guide to Entertaining." The reality star still works as a personal chef, but her fee varies per gig, starting at $10,000. Visit BethennyBakes.com for more information. Frankel also just … [Read more...] about Wanna buy what the ‘Real Housewives of New York City’ are selling?
The jailed NYPD rookie accused of stealing $113,000 from a Pennsylvania bank was a one-cop crime wave, pulling two earlier heists in Manhattan, authorities said Friday. A month before he joined the NYPD, Christian Torres robbed a Sovereign Bank on Avenue A in the East Village on June 8, 2007, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said. Torres, 21, made off with $16,305 after he passed a note to a teller just after the branch opened. Donning a matching suit and tie, stylish sunglasses and a fashionable skullcap, Torres returned to the same branch the morning of Nov. 16 and stole $102,000 after he flashed what appeared to be a gun at clerks, Kelly said. Though Torres' image - and slick wardrobe - was captured on a bank surveillance camera and distributed to the media, his crime spree did not end until he was nabbed at another Sovereign Bank in Muhlenberg, Pa., Thursday morning. The disgraced transit cop - who makes $32,800 a year - told NYPD investigators he used the bank loot to … [Read more...] about Rookie cop charged in Pa. bank job linked to 2 New York City holdups
No vehicle is as engrained into the landscape of a metropolis like the mighty Checker Marathon is with New York City. This broad-shouldered and big-bumpered sedan is as much of an N.Y.C. icon as the Empire State Building or the Brooklyn Bridge. That's despite the fact that the last working Checker cab retired from active service here in the Big Apple more than 15 years ago. FOLLOW DAILY NEWS AUTOS ON FACEBOOK. 'LIKE' US HERE. Yes, all those films and television shows that still have Checker cabs trundling along in modern traffic have been lying to you. But come on, would you really prefer a Yellow Cab Prius to roll into the shot? We’re not trying to stir up trouble - sorry Prius - or spark any rivalries. We at the Daily News Autos know that London has its famously upright black taxis. For years, New Delhi had the gloriously outdated Hindustan Ambassador. And no trip to Asia is complete without a ride in a square-edged Nissan Cedric, or the … [Read more...] about TAXICAB CLASSICS: Cruising New York City in a vintage Checker and DeSoto cab!
In celebration of the five-year anniversary of “Let’s Move,” her signature initiative to reduce childhood obesity, First Lady Michelle Obama has asked the nation to share five ways to stay fit under the hashtag #GimmeFive. If she really wants tips about keeping kids healthy and slim, Obama need look no further than a few trend-setting schools and school districts in the New York region. The key is not what they are doing in physical education classes — but what they are doing in the lunchroom. Earlier this month, The Peck Slip School in lower Manhattan became the second city public school to begin serving only vegetarian food in its cafeteria. Goodbye greasy nuggets, hello mouthwatering kung pao tofu. Peck Slip follows on the heels of PS 244 in Queens, which dropped meat from its cafeteria menus two years ago. The Newark School District has joined dozens of school districts around the country — including ones in Philadelphia, Boston, Buffalo, … [Read more...] about Tofu and veggies in the cafeteria: Follow the lead of New York City schools
A coalition of Hispanic chambers of commerce is set on establishing a new tradition as part of the annual Puerto Rican Day Parade festivities. On Friday, June 12, the first-ever Puerto Rican Hispanic Business Summit will be held in Manhattan to help the metro area's small business owners and entrepreneurs take their companies to another level. The Summit, a one-day event running from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Bank of New York Mellon (101 Barclay St.) is open to New York City members of the NYS Hispanic Chamber of Commerce - as well as Puerto Rico's chamber presidents and business members who will be in the city for Sunday's parade. The event comes at a time when small businesses in Puerto Rico are struggling to grow due to factors that include many large U.S. corporations that do business on the island refusing to interact with small companies owned by Puerto Ricans, in addition to a high rate of taxation by the island government." "One of the most important things that will … [Read more...] about New York City and Puerto Rico small-biz owners welcomed at Hispanic Chamber of Commerce’s first summit
Celebrate this July 4 with chars and stripes — without even leaving town. New York City — once a barbecue dead zone — now offers a multitude of regional styles, allowing ’cue fans to eat in Texas one night, Kansas City the next and North Carolina after that. “When we opened eight years ago, there were probably three other barbecue restaurants,” says Charles Grund Jr., the pitmaster at Hill Country, with locations in Flatiron and downtown Brooklyn. “Now there’s a good place in almost every other neighborhood.” Here’s how to take your own personal BBQ tour: St. Louis-style ribs Dinosaur Bar-B-Que (700 W. 125th St.; 604 Union St., Brooklyn; dinosaurbarbque.com) St. Louis barbecue is all about the cut of the ribs, explains John Stage, the man behind Dinosaur Bar-B-Que. A whole pork sparerib normally weights about 3.5 pounds when it is butchered. A St. Louis cut eliminates some … [Read more...] about Eat all of America’s great barbecue styles — without ever leaving New York City