6 THE QUEENS COURIER • DECEMBER 31, 2015 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT www.qns.com year in photos s march NICK CANNON BRIGHTENS UP KIDS’ LIVES IN BAYSIDE Celebrity sightings graced the pages of The Courier all year long, including Nick Cannon’s visit to Bayside’s St. Mary’s Hospital for Children. The singer and host of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” visited the hospital on March 16 to read to children his book, “Neon Aliens Ate My Homework and Other Poems.” The children’s book was inspired by his previous visits to the hospital, which he serves as a member of its board of directors. During his March visit, Cannon told the children that they inspired him and provided them with free copies of his book. Halloran gets 10 years for bribe scheme Former City Councilman Dan Halloran joined the parade of crooked New York politicians hauled away to jail, when he was sentenced on March 4 to serve 10 years in federal prison for a failed bribery plot. According to the charges, Halloran took more than $20,000 in bribes from individuals involved in a scheme to have Democrat Malcolm Smith, a former state senator, run as a Republican in the 2013 mayoral race. Further investigation revealed that Halloran accepted additional kickbacks from a private contractor in order to steer to them $80,000 in city funding for a project. Smith was also convicted on federal corruption charges and is now serving a federal prison term of his own. TENANT’S ARSON FIRE BURNED EIGHT WOODHAVEN HOMES Luis Lopez was told by his landlord on March 18 to vacate his 90th Street home in Woodhaven. Police said he allegedly returned to the location 10 minutes later and set the place on fi re. The blaze quickly spread throughout the home and into seven adjoining attached structures through the cocklofts, spaces between the top fl oor and roof of each home. More than 150 members of the Fire Department responded to put out the blaze; two fi refi ghters and six residents suffered minor injuries, and two dogs perished. Following an investigation, Lopez was arrested and charged with multiple counts of attempted murder, arson, child endangerment and cruelty to animals. In the wake of the fi re, the Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association worked to receive donations of clothing and other essential items to the affected families. Mayor marches in St. Pat’s for All Parade Through the snowfl akes, Mayor Bill de Blasio joined other city politicians at the St. Pat’s for All Parade in Sunnyside and Woodside on March 1. The parade, an early celebration of St. Patrick’s Day, is the only march of its kind fully welcoming of members of the LGBT community. Though the Fifth Avenue St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Manhattan allowed an LGBT delegation to participate in its 2015 march, the mayor decided not to participate in it in protest of organizers excluding marchers from carrying any displays of gay pride. Six days later, de Blasio participated in another Queens celebration of St. Patrick’s Day: the Rockaway St. Pat’s march.
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