May 18th, 2007
Vinegar Hill is a usually a quiet neighborhood, (one of my favorites) but early morning on Wednesday, residents were awakened by a police chase that ended in a crushed cab and an arrest. I’ll let the resident who emailed me tell the story:
Last night, at 4:17 A.M., within earshot of the building at 91 Hudson Ave, there was a bang that sounded like the shelling of Vinegar Hill. I shot upright in terror and ran to the window but I couldn’t see anything. There was some angry shouting out of view, and then within 30 seconds a police car sped down Front St. and turned left on Hudson Ave. More shouting. Then my first floor neighbors came outside. People asked, “Are you okay?” A voice said, “They caught the guy.” Someone said, “Will it catch on fire?” “No, that’s the radiator.” Huh?
Apparently, a guy stole someone’s cab in Manhattan and drove it away. Then the cabbie got into another cab, chased it over to Brooklyn, and must have called the police en route. Then when the carjacker got to the end of Front Street, he couldn’t round the turn, smashed into the front door of my building, then got out of the car and tried to run away but he was caught by the police. Everyone was okay, but the car was pretty smushed.
A few minutes later, four police cars were outside of my building, then firetrucks. The firefighters had to get in through the back of the first floor apartment, because there was a taxi pinning our front gate shut. They spent the next hour or so removing the gate from the roughed-up front of our building so we wouldn’t be trapped.
Not sure how long the car chase was, but it’s fortunate that no one got injured. Vinegar Hill is now back to its normal peaceful neighborhood.
[Thanks Benno and Luis for the tip and photos]