Crime Waves: ‘All This is Very Surprising’

The police officers accused of attacking Michael Mineo were acquitted yesterday. Jurors were apparently unconvinced by the ambiguous physical evidence they saw, and the prosecution succeeded in undermining Mineo’s credibility.

“It would seem that the prosecution allowed the victim to go on trial,” Al Sharpton said, according to the Post.

The Times concludes that it was “a case that recalled some of the city’s most notorious police brutality episodes but never generated as much public outcry or departmental change.”

In other news from the courts: Yvonne Fernandez, the woman accused of threatening a fellow Astor juror, is mystified by the version of events that Judith DeMarco shared yesterday. Reports the Post:

Fernandez, a producer for TruTV, said she became friendly with DeMarco and once told her that she briefly dated “the president of the Latin Kings” when she was 16.

But that was years ago, she said: “I’m 52. I have a good job, a beautiful home. It’s crazy that she said I came at her with gang signs.”

The Times adds that, according to Fernandez, her confrontation with DeMarco ended with hugging and crying together in the bathroom–a “pleasant voice-mail message” also followed. So she was shocked to learn that her supposed aggression had left DeMarco unable to render a fair verdict.

“All this is very surprising,” she told The Times.

Today in murders: the Daily News reports that a middle-aged Brooklyn couple killed last year were wrapped up in shady business. Four co-conspirators were charged yesterday for the “financial schemes” they had apparently hatched with the couple–a divorce lawyer and a mediator:

Prosecutors say the four people busted Monday were in cahoots with the couple to steal $1 million from clients–and probers think the scam may have led to the murders.

“It was kind of the thieves turning on each other,” one law enforcement source said. “We just hope something shakes out from these arrests.”

Meanwhile, a Queens school-bus driver apparently killed himself, his wife, and his two daughters. The Post and the Daily News both describe the moment of grim realization in which a concerned brother-in-law reaches through the family’s first-floor window only to feel a still, stiff foot.
And the Post reports that a defunct East Harlem museum stands accused of exhibiting a stolen painting:
Barney Shiotani’s Manhattan federal court suit says “unknown third parties” obtained Anthony van Dyck’s “Betrayal of Christ” through “theft, conversion or fraud” and transferred it to the National Museum of Catholic Art and History. A spokeswoman for the now-closed museum said it was a “misunderstanding.”
Crime Waves: ‘All This is Very Surprising’