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Man thought people were having sex in a parking garage — so he torched 135 cars, NYC cops say

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kings plaza mall

It took at least 200 firefighters to wrangle a massive blaze at a Brooklyn mall’s parking garage Monday morning, closing the King’s Plaza mall until Wednesday and sending toxic clouds of smoke through the air, the New York Post reported.

“The black, toxic smoke, the heat, the limited area firefighters had to work in all made it very difficult to quickly extinguish the fire,” New York Fire Department commissioner Daniel Nigro said, according to the paper. The blaze caused at least 29 injuries to civilians and emergency officials, according to Bklyner.

Poice say it was all started by one man with an unusual motive, the New York Daily News reported.

According to a criminal complaint obtained by the paper, police said 23-year-old Evon Stephens, who is homeless, crawled into a parked car in a section of the garage where auto dealers store luxury cars. Police say he set the car on fire, then exited the vehicle, gave the middle finger to a security camera and fled, the paper reported.
Police arrested him after he began talking to officers about the fire several hours later, asking questions like, “What do you think will happen, how long will the mall be closed and do you know who did it,” Patch reported.

Police said he confessed to setting the fire in a statement, and said the reason he did it was because of “his belief that others used the parked vehicles for sexual activity,” according to PIX 11.
At least 135 of the cars in the garage were burned, Patch reported.

“The defendant put several lives intentionally at risk,” said assistant U.S. attorney Temidayo Aganga-Williams, according to the New York Daily News.

Stephens said, “I’m sorry” and “I apologize” as he was led to a patrol car before appearing in court Tuesday, according to Brooklyn Daily. He was given no bail.

The garage was not damaged so much that it was unsafe, although police ordered people not to use the area where the fire occurred for the time being, News 12 reported.

Nigro said some of the firefighters were still recovering from the incident, according to the New York Post.

“Our members have various levels of smoke inhalation and heat exhaustion, working under those conditions with this amount of smoke and this amount of heat wearing what they wear, one can only imagine what they went through,” he said, according to the paper.

Source: https://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/national/article218649275.html

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9-year-old genius to graduate university

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Laurent Simons

(CNN) – A child prodigy from Belgium is on course to gain a bachelor’s degree at the tender age of 9.

Laurent Simons is studying electrical engineering at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) — a tough course even for students of an average graduate age.

Described by staff as “simply extraordinary,” Laurent is on course to finish his degree in December.

He then plans to embark on a PhD program in electrical engineering while also studying for a medicine degree, his father told CNN.

His parents, Lydia and Alexander Simons, said they thought Laurent’s grandparents were exaggerating when they said he had a gift, but his teachers soon concurred.

“They noticed something very special about Laurent,” said Lydia.

Laurent was given test after test as teachers tried to work out the extent of his talents. “They told us he is like a sponge,” said Alexander.

While Laurent comes from a family of doctors, his parents have so far not received any explanation as to why their child prodigy is capable of learning so quickly.

But Lydia has her own theory.

“I ate a lot of fish during the pregnancy,” she joked.

The TUE has allowed Laurent to complete his course faster than other students.

“That is not unusual,” said Sjoerd Hulshof, education director of the TUE bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, in a statement.

“Special students that have good reasons for doing so can arrange an adjusted schedule. In much the same way we help students who participate in top sport.”

Hulshof said Laurent is “simply extraordinary” and praised the youngster.

“Laurent is the fastest student we have ever had here,” he said. “Not only is he hyper intelligent but also a very sympathetic boy.”

Laurent told CNN his favorite subject is electrical engineering and he’s also “going to study a bit of medicine.”

His progress has not gone unnoticed and he is already being sought out by prestigious universities around the world, although Laurent’s family wouldn’t be drawn on naming which of them he is considering for his PhD.

“The absorption of information is no problem for Laurent,” said his father.

“I think the focus will be on research and applying the knowledge to discover new things.”

While Laurent is evidently able to learn faster than most, his parents are being careful to let him enjoy himself too.

“We don’t want him to get too serious. He does whatever he likes,” said Alexander. “We need to find a balance between being a child and his talents.”

Laurent said he enjoys playing with his dog Sammy and playing on his phone, like many young people.

However, unlike most 9-year-olds, he has already worked out what he wants to do with his life: develop artificial organs.

In the meantime, Laurent has to finish his bachelor’s degree and choose which academic institution will play host to the next stage in his remarkable journey.

Before that, he plans on taking a vacation to Japan for an undoubtedly well-deserved break.

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New award to honor arts and activism named after Lena Horne

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Lena Horne

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Gang members slam BMW into rival and his 8-year-old son in Harlem

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Gang members slam BMW into rival and his 8-year-old son in Harlem

Two gangbangers aimed their BMW like a missile at a father and his 8-year-old son on a Harlem sidewalk in a horrifying incident captured by video distributed by police Thursday.

The BMW — driven by a man police believe is a member of the Gorilla Stone Bloods Gang — was zeroed in on the father, a rival gang member, said cops.

Around 3:45 p.m. Nov. 6, the boy and his father were walking on W. 112th St. by Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. when the BMW jumped the sidewalk and slammed into them both, said cops.

Father and son were both knocked through a gate.

The BMW driver then backed up — and its driver and passenger, also believed to be a gang member, jumped out of the car and ran toward the father and the son.

One of the attackers slashed the father, identified by sources as 32-year-old Brian McIntosh, who’s served prison time for robbery and bail jumping.

McIntosh and his son went to Harlem Hospital. Miraculously, the boy escaped serious harm.

McIntosh was so adamant about refusing to help police catch his attackers that the young boy’s mother had to file a police report alleging he was the victim of a crime, police sources said.

Cops released video of the attack, and ask anyone with information about the suspects to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS.

Source nydailynews.com/

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