|Espada's staff give out school |
supplies (Photos by David Greene)
By DAVID GREENE
Last Wednesday evening, State Senator Pedro Espada, Jr. and several of his staffers gave out free school supplies to local residents outside PS 94 in Norwood.
"The need is great," said Espada, who's held several giveaways in recent weeks. Last month he antagonized a local pastor when he tried to hand out free groceries by St. Brendan's Church.
Outside PS 94, though, much of the response was positive.
"He's going to get our vote because he's been there for us," said local resident Sedella Harvin. "He supports us in ways that he can."
One man, however, began heckling Espada, accusing him of living in Mamaroneck, not his Bronx district, and of being a thief. (Espada is being sued for allegedly stealing $14 million from the non-profit healthcare company he runs.)
A furious Espada suggested the men settle the dispute with their fists. "Go and meet me there, over there on the corner," he said, pointing to East Gun Hill Road. The man, who refused to give his name, declined the invitation.
After the confrontation, Nancy Brown, another local resident, said, "I won't vote for Espada, but I took the school supplies, because I needed it."
Only folks who'd received a letter in the mail from Espada, and bought it with them, received a bag, which contained a notebook, a folder, a ruler, and pencils. About 100 bags were given out. They were paid for with campaign funds, said Espada, who's running for reelection.
Espada (right) is held back by his staff as he argues with an unidentified man