5. 82-70 Austin Street: Kitty Genovese’s Murder
Perhaps no one would call this address in Kew Gardens an architectural knockout, though Austin’s Ale House, with its half-timbering, wood paneling, and upper stories of stucco and brick-framed windows are happily reminiscent of a classic British pub (even if the profusion of plastic ad signs are not). But one still feels awe when treading this block, especially when peering up at the huge apartment building opposite. Thirty-eight people supposedly had flats overlooking the street in 1964—thirty-eight people, and not one called the police.
It is a well-known story: Kitty Genovese, returning from work late one evening, was stabbed outside her apartment by family man (and psychotic serial killer) Walter Mosely. She cried bloody murder, someone yelled from a window, Walter walked away—and returned a few minutes later to stab her again. Then he actually got in his car and drove a fair distance before hanging a U-turn and returning a third time to the block, still empty of police. He followed the crawling Kitty into her building vestibule before finally departing for good. Only then did someone call the cops. A cruiser showed up within two minutes, but it was too late: Kitty was dead, having asphyxiated from a pierced lung.
Though this is far darker than our usual fare at Untapped Cities, you can read more in this vein in our 2-part series on Notorious Crime Scenes in NYC (Murders & Suicides) and Part 2 on Heists, Bombings and Bank Robberies.
Get in touch with the author @TheDailyVirgin1