Daily News from New York, New York on August 20, 1983 · 3
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Daily News from New York, New York · 3

New York, New York
Issue Date:
Saturday, August 20, 1983
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k 7 s?" A . ' JOHN ROCA DAILY NEWS Firemen watch as blaze rages out of control after series of explosions at a South Bronx welding company yesterday. By BELLA ENGLISH and BRIAN KATES Explosions in a welding shop rocked a South Bronx industrial area yesterday and touched off a five-alarm fire that brought rush-hour traffic around the Triborough Bridge to a virtual standstill for nearly three hours. No one was seriously injured, officials said. At least one man was overcome by smoke. The blasts erupted at the Arc Welding Supply Co., 467 Bruckner Blvd., in an industrial zone under the elevated Bruckner Expressway about 6:30 p.m., blanketing the area with black smoke and creating traffic gridlock on arteries feeding the bridge. More than 175 firefighters battled the blaze as acetylene gas tanks in the building exploded around them. Scores of 100-pound tanks skyrocketed like flaming missiles, bombarding parked cars and crashing through buildings. Some soared 100 feet, shooting over the elevated Bruckner Expressway and landing in flames in a freight yard on the other side. Police closed Bruckner Blvd. around the site and shut down the See BLAZE Page 16 n ST- wS) i i HiPARK - I BRONX j n 138 th Jj1 jst. I Major Deegon - f 'ZA.- Explosion occurred at Bruckner Blvd. near 149th St. a n DLTD LfDLfuD(l By JOHN RANDAZZO and BRIAN KATES With Stephen McFarland A 37-year-old actress was found strangled with an electric cord in the living room of her apartment on the West Side's Theater Row, police said yesterday. Detectives yesterday were seeking to question the boyfriend of Judy Heiss, who was found dead in her sixth floor walk-up at 413 Wv43d St., where she had lived ? ince moving from Chicago six years ago. Her boyfriend, whom police would identify only as a slim, sandy-haired man named Mark, was seen with her on the day of her death, and neighbors said they had quarreled. "We saw her Thursday morning and she looked quite upset," said one tenant who asked not to be identified. "She had been arguing with her boyfriend over the weekend." Detectives were investigating reports that Mark had lived in the five-room apartment with Heiss and her roommate, school teacher Anilda Loza-da, and that the couple had fought after the women told him to move out. POLICE DECLINED to list Mark as a suspect, and said they only wanted to question him. "It's too early in the investigation," a detective said. "We're still talking with all her friends and neighbors." Detectives also were questioning workmen who had been installing storm windows in the building Thursday. The slim, curly-haired actress was found when Lozada returned to the apartment at about 8:10 p.m. Thursday. She was fully clothed and lying face up in the living room, police said. "We didn't find any evidence of robbery and there was no sign of forced entry," according to Detective Lt. James Cowan of the Midtown North station, indicating Heiss may have known her killer. Neighbor Graciella Lopez, who usually greeted Heiss on the stoop of the apartment building when the actress came home from work, said she V. 3 , 'i - i - t- TOM MONASTER DAILY NEWS Judy Heiss strangled with electric cord In her apartment. did not see her Thursday night. But, she said, she heard "one long, long scream" come from the sixth floor at about 4:30 p.m., not quite four hours before the body was discovered. Heiss worked in television in Chicago before coming to New York to make commercials and play minor parts in soap operas. Her apartment building, occupied largely by actors and actresses, is in Theater Row, across the street from Manhattan Plaza, a federally subsidized complex for performing artists. In between acting jobs, she worked as a barmaid at Amy's Pub on Ninth Ave. Another barmaid there, Linda DaGrossa, said the slain woman was "very nice and very ambitious professionally. She worked here for about three years." pack Dim j SQDU By JAMES HARNEY Two unemployed brothers from Westchester found themselves parked in jail yesterday for allegedly opening a fake express payment window in the Manhattan office of the Parking Violations Bureau as part of a ticket-fixing scam that may have netted them up to $100,000. City Investigation Commissioner Patrick McGinley charged that the two took advantage of the constant traffic jam in the bureau office at 51 Chambers St. to regularly go behind a counter, open their own window and accept payments for parking summonses. "It's so crowded and chaotic in that lobby that it's easy to see how they could have operated undetected," said McGinley, even though the brothers allegedly operated that scam and another one for more than a year and a half. McGinley estimated their total take at up to $5,000 a month. In the second alleged scam, McGinley charged that George and Tyrone Rhett of Morris Ave., New Rochelle, openly approached people on line to pay fines and offered to fix their tickets at cut rates. When the motorists agreed, McGinley said, the Rhetts allegedly took their money and gave them fake receipts. IF THE MOTORISTS had been classified as scofflaws, the Rhetts also gave them fake forms notifying the Department of Motor Vehicles that their fines had been paid. That way the DMV would clear the scofflaws to re-register their cars. McGinley said the Rhett brothers were arrested Thursday on charges of larceny, forgery, criminal posses- and sion of forged instruments tampering with public records. "The scam came to light when, last April, the motorists tried to re-register their cars and discovered that they couldn't because the summonses were still outstanding," McGinley said. McGinley said 10 drivers, who had allegedly paid the Rhetts amounts ranging from $180 to $2,300 each, have come forward to the department, which has not yet decided if it will prosecute drivers who attempted to fix their tickets.

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