Panic in New York: massive fire in NYPD warehouse destroyed evidence and left 8 injured
A massive fire that ripped through an NYPD warehouse in Brooklyn yesterday left eight people injured, destroyed DNA evidence and jeopardized multiple criminal cases, NYPD and FDNY officials said.
“This fire will probably continue for a few days before we can fully extinguish it. and getting into the deep seeded areas,” FDNY Department Chief John Hodgens said. Three firefighters, three EMS paramedics and two civilians suffered minor injuries.. The flames were so fierce that a section of the warehouse collapsed, Hodgens said.
The fire broke out at the Erie Basin Auto Pound on Columbia St., vecindario Red Hook, around 10:30 a.m. Tuesday and left thick plumes of smoke visible from Manhattan and other counties.
An exact cause of the fire has not been determined. The flames may have been caused by a lithium ion battery that was stored in the impound yard, based on a preliminary investigation, fire department sources said.
Fourteen NYPD employees and six contractors were working in the warehouse. when one of them saw smoke coming from a “high shelf,” NYPD Chief Jeffrey Maddrey said. “Everyone left and the fire department was alerted.”
Typically that building stores “biological evidence”: clothing and other items that have been DNA tested by the NYPD, Maddrey said, adding that there were no rape kits kept at the site.
“There was a substantial amount of motorcycles, electric bicycles, some vehicles,” Maddrey explained. “Some of the evidence goes back a long time, 20 to 30 years. There were also some properties of the Hurricane Sandy over there. We won’t know the extent of what was destroyed until we get an itemized bill and see what was there.”
In 2012 Hurricane Sandy destroyed 5,000 55-gallon cardboard drums filled with DNA evidence when storm surge flooded the ground floor of the facility, police said.
The New York Police Department also uses that area to hold all Illegal dirt bikes and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) being seized on the streets from the city. The cars that are evidence in criminal investigations, as well as those in which the victims were shot, are also kept there, he said. Daily News.
NYPD Deputy Commissioner Julian Phillips said the department will catalog what was damaged or destroyed and send notifications to the appropriate agencies.
“We expect the NYPD and district attorneys to provide us with a full report of the damaged evidence and to promptly inform defense attorneys of individual cases that may have been affected,” said Redmond Haskins, a spokesman for the advocacy group. defending Legal Aid Society.