[Hpn] Man Slain In Bed At Wards Island Shelter

William Charles Tinker wtinker@metrocast.net
Wed, 28 Sep 2005 07:24:36 -0400

Homeless man slain in a bed at shelter


A sleeping homeless man was stabbed to death at a Wards Island shelter 
yesterday morning because he was resting in his attacker's bed, cops and 
shelter residents said.
The victim, Juan (Bebo) Reyes, 26, had just checked into the Charles H. Gay 
Center on Monday and had not yet been assigned a bed, residents said.
Reyes was sleeping about 7 a.m. when his alleged attacker, Andre Miller, 55, 
approached him, police said.
When Reyes didn't answer, Miller took a knife and plunged it into the 
victim's chest, cops said.
Reyes let out a piercing cry as he struggled to get out of the bed, 
residents said. He was takento Harlem Hospital, where he died.
"He didn't have a bed. He was lying in someone else's bed," said Al Ventura, 
38, a shelter resident. "He got stabbed in the bed. He tried to get up, and 
he screamed."
Residents said they were concerned for their safety. The 953-bed shelter is 
run by Volunteers of America, a private nonprofit agency that has a contract 
with the city.
"Today's events represent a terrible and isolated tragedy," said Homeless 
Services Commissioner Linda Gibbs. "In the wake of this incident, we're 
taking a close look at the security efforts at this facility to see what 
more can be done to ensure a safe environment."
Charges are pending against Miller, cops said.
Tony Sclafani and Austin Fenner

Originally published on September 28, 2005