Lower East Side Links

silver city hall

The city’s newspapers this morning and over the weekend were filled with previews of the Sheldon Silver trial. The New York Times calls his trial, along with the overlapping corruption trial of former Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos, an “extraordinary spectacle centering on allegations of corruption, bribery and nepotism in the highest chambers of political power.” The judge dismissed five prospective jurors on Friday, after they indicated on questionnaires that they’d already formed opinions about the case. Also on Friday, prosecutors said Silver never asked for a plea deal.

Politico New York looks at trial strategy, noting that “The defense’s ability to uncouple Silver’s legislative work from what he did as a private-practice lawyer will be a critical part of the case.” The Times Union runs down the potential witness list. In an editorial carrying the headline, “Sheldon Silver’s Crimes Against New York,” the Daily News asserts, “He bought votes by funneling taxpayer dollars to favored groups in his Lower East Side district, thus ensuring his endless reelection.”

According to Page 6, two local teens swiped a large rocking horse sculpture from a workspace on Orchard Street, and rolled it away on their skateboards. The unfinished work is owned by the street artist known as Mr. Brainwash (his real name is Thierry Guetta). The kids went straight to their friend Mike Malbon of Franks Chop Shop. He helped negotiate a return of the sculpture. Guetta told the Post, “I don’t have any hate… They are kids. Everybody’s been young. You do [stupid] things… but [it’s how] they react after. They felt bad about it, so I said ‘OK, they went from bad to good.'”

In Untapped Cities, local writer Laurie Gwen Shapiro tells the story of a group of kids, involved in an artist apprentice program, who created a mural in the backyard of East Broadway gallery Sargent’s Daughters.