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August 6th in NYC History

Posted: Aug 6, 2013 | 1:00 PM

1911:  Lucille Ball, radio, television and film star, producer, and comic actress born.
  She died 4/26/1989.

1928:  Artist Andy Warhol born in Pennsylvania.

1988:  Tompkins Square Park and Avenue A police rioting.  Homelessness and crime were the backdrop.  Tompkins Square Park was an out-of-control refuge for the homeless but also musicians, punks, artists, drug addicts, and dealers.  Even during the day there was a sense of danger and craziness.  
   The city sought to impose a curfew on the park, evicting the homeless.  
   Tensions brewed for a week.  An 11:30 PM protest was followed by an attack from the NYPD, not only against battling protesters, but also anyone on the streets nearby.  Cops were beating people in stores, chasing down pedestrians and beating them with clubs.  Their badge numbers covered with tape.
   Normally, 'police riots' are dismissed as propaganda, but two neighborhood artists and techies were armed with a new technology, hand-held video camcorders which documented the bloody excessive violence.
   A hundred charges of police brutality were filed leading to two officers being charged for excessive force.

2009:  The Bronx' Sonia Sotomayor was confirmed as the first Hispanic Supreme Court justice.


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