2006-11-08 / Features

Graffiti Vandal Arrest Hailed

BY RICHARD GENTILVISO

Ann Bruno, 114th Police Precinct Community Council president (c.), and George Delis, Community Board 1 district manager, pose with Melinda Caudill at the council's October meeting at Riccardo's By the Bridge, Astoria. Caudill contributed $1,000 to the total of $3,185 raised at the meeting for the council's annual children's Christmas party, scheduled for December 2. Ann Bruno, 114th Police Precinct Community Council president (c.), and George Delis, Community Board 1 district manager, pose with Melinda Caudill at the council's October meeting at Riccardo's By the Bridge, Astoria. Caudill contributed $1,000 to the total of $3,185 raised at the meeting for the council's annual children's Christmas party, scheduled for December 2. Oliver Siandre, aka Kiko, is going to jail. As the 114th Police Precinct announced its 103rd graffiti arrest, leading the city, it was also announced that the notorious graffiti vandal has pleaded guilty to 28 counts of criminal mischief for spraying his Kiko tag on some 50 sites in Astoria. The announcements were made at the October meeting of the 114th Precinct Community Council.

Siandre took a plea deal on October 19 in Queens Supreme Court. Judge Barry Kron sentenced him to six months in prison and a fine of $25,000 for the damage he caused. Siandre turned down an earlier plea deal for one to three years in prison. He was facing up to seven years if convicted.

"We were calling for a little bit more jail time," said Andrew Moesel, communications director for Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. However, according to the district attorney's office, more jail time would have made Siandre eligible for parole with restitution, Moesel said.

"[Siandre] will be in jail for four to six months, and he will have to pay back the community," said Moesel. "Hopefully, this will set a good precedent." Vallone Jr. led the fight to prosecute Kiko. "For someone like Kiko who did literally thousands of dollars of damage, we think he deserves jail time," said Moesel.

Captain Christopher Tamola, executive officer of the 114th Precinct, said Siandre was also sentenced to four and one half years probation. "He can be sent back [to prison] if he violates his probation," Tamola said.

Tamola, in reporting that the precinct had just made the 103rd graffiti arrest so far this year, said there have also been 190 graffiti cleanups this year. He credited the 114th Civilian Observation Patrol and Jim and Barbara Pollock. "They are our point people in the graffiti effort," he said.

Police Officers Michael Bellis, Thomas Ramirez and Mary Spiezio received Cop-of-the- Month awards for September.

In stopping a car that had run a red light, Bellis found the driver inebriated. At the station house, the arrested driver offered a bribe. Bellis notified his supervisor and got the bribery offer on tape. "This arrest demonstrates the high integrity of Officer Bellis and the NYPD," Tamola said.

On September 13, Ramirez encountered and arrested two individuals breaking into a car. It was later determined that they were involved in numerous burglaries and other car break-ins. A knife, burglary tools and stolen property were in their possession.

Responding to a radio call for an auto breakin, Spiezio initially saw nothing at the scene. Continuing to canvass the area, she arrested two individuals who were found to be involved in five to 10 other car break-ins, including one of a car belonging to Vallone.

With the 114th Precinct Community Council's annual children's Christmas party drawing near, a fundraiser was hosted by Community Board 1 District Manager George Delis. "These children are abused throughout the year," Delis said. Civic groups and organizations, local businesses and private citizens donated a total of $3,185 during the evening to help the 114th throw a party filled with gifts, food and entertainment. The goal is to raise $4,000, said 114th Community Council President Ann Bruno. Delis praised Bruno's efforts, saying, "It's because of her that this organization is so successful."

This year's Christmas party will take place December 2, 9 a.m., at the Astoria Manor.

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