After Officers Are Accidentally Sickened at Downtown Shake Shack, Police Unions Allege Deliberate Poisoning
The Shake Shack at the Fulton Transit Center, where three officers were accidentally sickened by contaminated milk shakes.
Three NYPD officers were hospitalized on Monday evening, after ingesting what they believed was a toxic substance at the Shake Shack within the Fulton Transit Center in Lower Manhattan.
At approximately 8:30 pm, the officers (whose names have not been released) were taking a meal break at the popular burger emporium when they noticed a strange taste and smell coming from the milk shakes they had ordered.
They quickly concluded that the source of the aroma and flavor was a strong (and potentially toxic) cleaning fluid. As they began to feel sick, the officers radioed a request for assistance, which brought ambulances and investigators to the scene. All three officers were taken to Bellevue Hospital, where they were determined to be in stable condition. (All three have since been released and are expected to make a full recovery.) At the same time, detectives immediately launched an inquiry into whether somebody had deliberately attempted to poison the officers.
While this investigation was ongoing, but before it had issued any formal conclusions, two police unions — the Patrolman’s Benevolent Association (PBA) and Detective’s Endowment Association (DEA) — issued formal statements, via Twitter, effectively accusing Shake Shack employees of attempting to murder the officers. The DEA posted that, “three of our fellow officers were intentionally poisoned by one or more workers at Shake Shack.” The PBA followed suit, posting that, “a toxic substance, believed to be bleach, had been placed in their beverages,” and adding that, “police officers cannot even take [a] meal without coming under attack.”
Donald Trump, Jr. joined the fray, posting a Tweet asking, “Where are the Democrats denouncing the NYPD officers getting poisoned on the job? Their silence is deafening.”
By 4:00 am on Tuesday morning, the NYPD had finished its investigation, concluding that the officers were sickened accidentally. Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison posted to Twitter that, “after a thorough investigation by the NYPDʼs Manhattan South investigators, it has been determined that there was no criminality by Shake Shackʼs employees. It appears the incident was accidental, possibly the result of cleaning solution that wasn’t properly removed from the shake machine.”
The DEA, PBA, and Donald Trump, Jr. have all deleted their original Tweets, but none have formally retracted or apologized for the misinformation contained in their posts.
At a Tuesday press conference, Mayor Bill de Blasio responded, saying, “this example last night is a good one. I would think the unions would trust the NYPD to find the truth, and I thank Chief Harrison for so rapidly getting the truth out. But these union leaders don’t want the truth. They just want to sow division, and we have to figure out what the limits are on their right to do that.”
“I don’t like to be fighting with any labor union,” he continued. “I believe in the labor movement, but what I’ve seen… too often from the PBA, is efforts to divide us, to hold us back, to create all sorts of negativity, to push back progress, to undermine efforts at unity. It’s literally anti-social, what these union leaders do. They try to undermine efforts to bond police and community. They try to undermine progress.”
Pushing for Peace of Mind
Local Leaders Urge Heightened Federal Response to September 11 Mental Health Issues
Community Board 1 (CB1) is urging federal lawmakers to expand benefits offered by the World Trade Center Health Program and the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund to include more robust help for survivors of the terrorist attacks who are grappling with mental health issues.
‘A Fraudulent Scheme to Evade the Rent Stabilization Laws’
FiDi Renters Seek Recompense for Years of Rent Overcharges; U.S. Supreme Court Declines to Overturn Tenants’ Victory
More Financial District tenants are going to court to demand restitution from years of illegally high rent, on the heels of a 2019 ruling by New York State’s highest court, which found that as many as 5,000 Lower Manhattan apartments had been illegally deprived of rent stabilization benefits.
The most recent suit was filed on behalf of tenants at 90 Washington Street, a 397-unit rental building located between Rector and Joseph P. Ward Streets. This filing follows similar legal actions on behalf of tenants at 63-67 Wall Street, Ten Hanover Square, 50 Murray Street, 90 West Street, and 53 Park Place.
1) Social Distancing for Small Business, Sanitation & Noise Concerns – Discussion
2) Combined Sewer Overflows and Summer Swimming – Discussion
3) Addressing Systemic Racism and White Supremacy in Battery Park City & Lower Manhattan – Presentation by Taylor Banning & Katie Cuccia-Fenton, bpc4blm & Possible Resolution
4) Banning Pepper Spray to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19 – Discussion and Possible Resolution
5) The State of Policing in NYC – Discussion & Possible Resolution
June 18 6PM
1) Social Distancing for Small Business – Discussion and resolution
2) Improvements to Voting and Special Temporary COVID-19 Rules – Discussion & Resolution
3) Committee reports
Eyes to the Sky June 15 – 28, 2020
Summer Solstice – June 20, 2020
Every day is Sun day for the month of June, when the Sun is up for 15 hours plus a few minutes most days and darkness prevails, most days, for a few minutes less than 9 hours. The longest days of the year occur as Earth reaches the point in its orbit when the North Pole is tilted closest to the Sun, known as the summer solstice. This year, astronomers calculate that the solstice occurs on Saturday, June 20 at 5:44pm. According to my pencil on paper figuring from Starry Night* data, which is offered to a tenth of a second, day length at our location on Friday the 19this 3 seconds shorter than on the solstice and on the 20th day length is 2 seconds longer than on Sunday the 21st.
Each day, a different encore presentation from the company’s Live in HD series is available for free streaming on the Met website, with each performance available for 23 hours, from 7:30 p.m. EDT until 6:30 p.m. the following day. The schedule will include outstanding complete performances from the past 14 years of cinema transmissions, starring all of opera’s greatest singers.
Inspired by confinement and virtual connectivity, The Attendants 2020 is a re-imagining of the cutting edge interactive performance presented at Brookfield Place in 2011, during which the public communicated with performers through text messages and tweets. The plexiglass cube from the 2011 performance has been replaced by the 2020 2-D rectangular screens we have all become so familiar with and reliant on. Viewers will be able to influence the piece by sending messages to the performers through a digital platform from noon to 6pm EST. The performers can only respond with their bodies, each streaming in from the safety of their own homes.
Artist & poet Rachel Eliza Griffiths reads from her forthcoming book Seeing the Body (W. W. Norton, 2020) from her home in New York. Rachel Eliza Griffiths is a multi-media artist, poet, and writer. She received the MFA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and is the recipient of numerous fellowships including Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, Kimbilio, Cave Canem Foundation, Vermont Studio Center, Millay Colony, and Yaddo. Noon. Free.
CB1 Wants to Claim Part of the Pike for Cyclists
Community Board 1 is calling upon City and State transportation officials to close—at least temporarily—the lane of Route 9A (also know as the West Side Highway) that adjoins the Hudson River Park, between Chambers and Canal Streets, to enable continued social distancing, as New York scales back quarantine measures in the wake of the pandemic coronavirus outbreak.
The plan would use concrete barriers to bar traffic from the westernmost lane of the eight-lane highway, for a half-mile stretch of the waterfront boulevard, in order to allow users of the Hudson River Park additional room for biking, jogging, and walking.
City Pushes Plan to Move Iconic Sculpture Away from Bowling Green
The City’s Public Design Commission is slated to consider on Monday a controversial plan that would move Charging Bull—the the iconic Arturo Di Modica bronze sculpture that has been snarling and pawing the ground just north of Bowling Green since 1989—to a new location in front of the New York Stock Exchange. Several local leaders are concerned that the administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio is pushing this plan while ignoring community objections. To read more…
Honorable WilliamWall Opens for Business
The Honorable William Wall will open June 18. Click for more information.
June 17: Today in History
1885 – Statue of Liberty arrives in NYC aboard French ship `Isere’
1462 – Vlad III the Impaler attempts to assassinate Mehmed II (The Night Attack) forcing him to retreat from Wallachia.
1631 – Mumtaz Mahal dies during childbirth. Her husband, Mughal emperor Shah Jahan I, then spends more than 20 years building her tomb, the Taj Mahal.
1824 – Bureau of Indian Affairs established
1882 – Tornado kills 130 in Iowa
1885 – Statue of Liberty arrives in NYC aboard French ship `Isere’
1895 – US Ship Canal at West 225th St in the Bronx completed; cutting Marble Hill off from Manhattan
1916 – US troops under Gen Pershing march into Mexico
1928 – Amelia Earhart leaves Newfoundland to become first woman as a passenger to cross Atlantic in a plane piloted by Wilmer Stultz
1939 – Last public guillotining in France. Eugen Weidmann, a convicted murderer, is guillotined in Versailles outside the prison Saint-Pierre.
1950 – First kidney transplant performed in Chicago
1967 – China becomes world’s 4th thermonuclear (H-bomb) power
1970 – Edwin Land patents Polaroid camera
1972 – Five arrested for burglarizing Democratic Party HQ at Watergate
1987 – With the death of the last individual, the Dusky Seaside Sparrow becomes extinct.
1994 – OJ Simpson doesn’t turn himself in on murder charges, LA cops chase his Ford Bronco for 1½ hours, eventually gives up and seen live on TV
1704 – John Kay, English inventor (d. 1780)
1882 – Igor Stravinsky, Oranienbaum, Russia, composer (Rite of Spring)
1898 – Maurits C Escher, Dutch graphic artist
1943 – Barry Manilow, New York City, American singer/pianist
1945 – Tommy Franks, American General
1876 – Harriet Scott, American ex-slave, who with husband Dred Scott unsuccessfully sued for their freedom
Previously Published Downtown News
Gauges Become Less Grim
Fourteen New Cases, and One Additional Death in Lower Manhattan
A New York City prepares to begin reopening on Monday, this will be the Broadsheet’s final weekly update about local health statistic related to the pandemic coronavirus — until and unless the outbreak reemerges.
Downtown Non-Profit Sues to Gain Release of Protestors
A non-profit based in Lower Manhattan is suing the New York Police Department (NYPD) to obtain the release of more than 100 protestors arrested during the recent demonstrations over the death of George Perry Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on May 25.
The Legal Aid Society, headquartered at 199 Water Street, filed suit on Tuesday in New York State Supreme Court, on behalf of 108 detainees who were arrested in Manhattan during the first five days of protests.
CB1 Endorses Push to Expand VCF Coverage to Pandemic Illness
Community Board 1 (CB1) has signed on to a campaign that aims to expand the eligibility criteria of the September 11 Victims Compensation Fund (VCF) to include illnesses related to the outbreak of the pandemic coronavirus.
Crashes in Tourism and Business Travel May Signal Trouble for Downtown Hotel Sector
A hotel developer seeking to repeat a 2017 coup may face headwinds that could work against such a reprise. Last December, Hidrock Properties, a Manhattan-based builder of hotels and office properties, completed demolition of two small buildings at 110 and 112 Liberty Street, between Greenwich Street and Trinity Place, which it bought for $38 million in 2018. (Local residents may remember them as the home of the Ho-Yip and Essex World restaurants.)