Support our Sponsors
  • Masters School - Dobbs Ferry, NY
  • Luxury Group Auction - Irvington, NY real estate sale
  • BREAST CARE & SURGERY at St. John's Riverside Hospital
Community News
Sleepy Hollow News
Tarrytown News

Attention Turns to Barnhart Park Safety after Teen is Murdered

• Bookmarks: 74


November 1, 2015

| by Elaine Marranzano |

Hudson Independent news - Barnhart Park - Sleepy Hollow, NY
Barnhart Park in Sleepy Hollow has long been a teen
hang-out, according to residents.
—Photo by Sunny McLean

A war of words between two teenagers culminated on October 9 with the stabbing death of 17-year-old Tahj Robinson in Sleepy Hollow’s Barnhart Park. Berinzon Moronta, 16, was quickly arrested and charged with second-degree murder.

According to reports, the boys had an ongoing disagreement about a female, and it was well-known they were planning to fight in the
park that Friday night where a crowd of peers had gathered in anticipation. No one alerted police. Villagers say the newly renovated Barnhardt Park, a busy and well-equipped park, has long been a teenage hang-out.

Support our Sponsors
  • Luxury Group Auction - Irvington, NY real estate sale
  • Sunnyside Federal - CDs
  • Hastings Alumni Association
  • Listening Caring - St. Johns Dobbs Ferry

“When I was a kid, we were in and out of that park playing at 10 o’clock at night without a problem,” said Rene Hernandez, who has lived adjacent to the park for 40 years.

But Hernandez, along with about 30 other residents who attended a Board of Trustees’ meeting four days after the stabbing, said they have grown increasingly concerned. “Now, I won’t even let my 14-year-old walk my dog at dusk,” he said.

Like all Sleepy Hollow parks, Barnhart officially closes at dusk and has posted rules against loud music and drinking. Enforcement of the rules falls to the police. Just hours before Robinson was fatally stabbed, Sleepy Hollow police made a drug arrest inside the park. “Our police make regular patrols, including foot patrols, in our parks,” said Mayor Ken Wray. “But we need all of you to be our eyes and ears. We need you to call us.”

Over the past 24 months, the police department received 28 calls related to Barnhart Park. “Most of those were made by the police themselves or by our public works employees reporting vandalism. Only five or six of those related to alcohol or marijuana,” Wray said. “I’ve made numerous calls to the police regarding our youth drinking, the commotion and fighting in the streets, public intoxication, the hanging-out in the parks after dark,” said Maria Negron. “Far too often police have turned a blind eye.”

Police Chief Greg Camp declined to be interviewed for this article, providing instead a written statement in which he said the inci-dent has “saddened and shocked” the community. Some residents implored the village to provide more activities for teenagers, while others asked, “Where are the parents?” Many urged the village to hire a youth police officer, something the village is considering.

“We are talking with the high school to work out the details and function of a youth officer,” said Wray, but ruled out the idea of fencing the parks. “We are not going to turn this into a ‘police state.’“

There have been at least six murders in Sleepy Hollow since 1998 with Robinson being the youngest victim. Residents reacted with an outpouring of emotion, contributing money for Robinson’s funeral, holding a march and a vigil and flooding the 10591 Facebook page with solution oriented comments.

“Let this be a sad reminder that in addition to laying to rest a vibrant young man, we must look to ourselves to do better and be better,” said Alberta Jarane. “Th is is a community that came out to protect our children. I hope to see all of you at more meetings. We are the reason this village can change.”

Read or leave a comment on this story...


Support our Sponsors
  • The Rivertowns Rotary - scholarship awards
  • Dobbs Ferry PTSA congratulation to the graduates!
  • Tranquility Spa - Scarsdale
  • Andrea Martone - Houlihan Lawrence
  • Congratulations Ardsley High School Graduates
  • Listening Caring - St. Johns Dobbs Ferry
  • Piccola Trattoria in Dobbs Ferry - make a reservation
  • Congratulations Irvington High School Graduates
  • Hasting High School Graduation Congratulations

Limbo

LIMBO: Between the devil and the deep blue sea By Krista Madsen– It seems I’ve embarked on a Crime &...
Read More

Ardsley High School Holds Graduation Ceremony

by Rick Pezzullo Ardsley High School held commencement exercises Friday as 350 seniors received their diplomas. The following is a...
Read More

Dobbs Ferry High Seniors Receive Their Diplomas

by Rick Pezzullo--- On June 22 at Dobbs Ferry Waterfront Park, 86 seniors from Dobbs Ferry High School received their...
Read More

Villa Lewaro Hosts Irvington’s Juneteenth Party

By Barrett Seaman-- One of the more ambitious Juneteenth events this year took place in Irvington on the Saturday following...
Read More

Bowman And Latimer Near An End To Their Brutal Primary

By Barrett Seaman-- As the battle to determine the Democratic candidate for New York’s 16th Congressional District heads into its...
Read More

Hastings-on-Hudson High School Class of 2024 Graduates

By Rick Pezzullo--- Hastings-on-Hudson High School held commencement exercises Thursday for the 136 seniors in the Class of 2024. The...
Read More

Sleepy Hollow High School Class of 2024 Receives Diplomas

By Rick Pezzullo--- Family and friends braved the blistering hot temperatures Thursday evening to congratulate the Class of 2024 at...
Read More

Dobbs Ferry Man Jailed for Assaulting Two Teenagers

By Rick Pezzullo---- A 63-year-old Dobbs Ferry man was sentenced Thursday to six years in state prison for assaulting two...
Read More

Irvington High School Class of 2024 Graduates at Waterfront

By Rick Pezzullo--- Irvington High School celebrated its Class of 2024 during a commencement ceremony at Matthiessen Park on June...
Read More

Robbery Occurs at Chase Bank in Ardsley

This story was produced by the Rivertowns Current at: (https://rivertownscurrent.substack.com/) by Janine Annett-- At 9:24 AM, the Ardsley Police Department...
Read More
74 recommended
1819 views
bookmark icon