We know July 4th is around the corner when we hear about the police seizing caches of illegal fireworks. Yesterday, Police Commissioner Ray Kelly announced "one of the largest fireworks seizures" in city history: 9,000 pounds of fireworks were found in Sheepshead Bay. Newsday reports that the fireworks included "mortar shells typically used in professional displays, as well as something called the 800-Shot Grand Finale Saturn Missile Battery, which is as big as a small table."
Apparently people knew to go to the D'Ambrosi house on East 27th Street to get fireworks. A sergeant said, "the basement was set up like a store. It looked like a Kmart. All these were on display on shelves. We've never seen anything like this before. There were supply lists with prices and the itemized names of each one, about three pages' worth." And get this: Some fireworks were marketed to young girls, as they were packaged in pink backpacks with "What a Girl Wants" written on them!
Five men, including Lawrence D'Ambrosi and his brother Christopher D'Ambrosi, were arrested with weapons possession and illegal dealing in fireworks. Rudy Giuliani formed the NYPD-FDNY Joint Fireworks Task Force in 1995, cracking down on illegal fireworks all over. NY Magazine pointed out that Mayor Bloomberg, with his presidential aspirations, may want to reconsider how undercover NYPD cops crack down on people who buy fireworks in Pennsylvania and bring them to the city.