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Queens Chronicle

Cops put the brakes on illegal drag race

Cops nab six dare devils in Maspeth

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Posted: Thursday, April 10, 2014 10:30 am | Updated: 11:29 am, Thu Apr 17, 2014.

Residents of Middle Village and Maspeth have long complained of people driving recklessly down area streets, and maybe six speed demons who were caught in the act last weekend will think twice next time before putting the pedal to the medal.

According to the office of Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, Edgar Lozano, 26, of Jamaica, and Edward Henry, 21, of St. Albans, were apprehended by police after taking part in a drag racing event on Laurel Hill Boulevard in Maspeth around 1:30 a.m. on Sunday.

Four other suspects from Manhattan, Brooklyn and Long Island were also arrested alongside the two Queens residents.

The defendants are awaiting arraignment on charges of second-degree reckless endangerment and numerous violations of vehicle and traffic laws.

They face up to one year in prison if convicted.

“Turning the streets of Queens into speedways endangers not only innocent pedestrians and motorists, but the spectators and drivers who are drawn to these dangers spectacles,” Brown said in a statement. “Such illegal speeding contests have no place on the streets of our city.

According to the investigation, dozens of spectators watched the races, for which Lozano and Henry served as the flagmen, in charge of starting the competition, for several of the races.

Police from the 108th Precinct who conducted the operation blocked Laurel Hill Boulevard at 48th, 49th and 58th streets with barricade trucks and police vans with lights flashing in order to box in the alleged racers.

“There is no place in the streets of New York City for drag racing or the dangers it poses to both pedestrians and drivers,” police commissioner Bill Bratton said in the statement. “These arrests send a clear message that disregarding the safety and welfare of Queens residents will not be tolerated.”

Four vehicles were seized in the bust, as well as four smartphones. Brown says the phones will be searched for evidence pertaining to the planning of the races.

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