Stabbed hero dies as more than 20 people stroll past him
A heroic homeless man, stabbed after saving a Queens woman from a knife-wielding attacker, lay dying in a pool of blood for more than an hour as nearly 25 people indifferently strolled past him, a shocking surveillance video obtained by The Post reveals. Some of the passers-by paused to stare at Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax last Sunday morning and others leaned down to look at his face.
He had jumped to the aid of a woman attacked on 144th Street at 88th Road in Jamaica at 5:40 a.m., was stabbed several times in the chest and collapsed as he chased his assailant. In the wake of the bloodshed, a man came out of a nearby building and chillingly took a cellphone photo of the victim before leaving. And in several instances, pairs of people gawked at Tale-Yax without doing anything.
Later, another man stopped, leaned over and vigorously shook Tale-Yax’s body. After lifting the victim’s head and body to reveal a pool of blood, he also walked off. Not until some 15 minutes after he was shaken by the pedestrian — more than an hour and 20 minutes after the victim collapsed — did firefighters finally arrive and discover that Tale-Yax, 31, had died.
Firefighters were responding to a 911 call of a non-life-threatening injury at 7:23 a.m. when they found his body. Cops said they received four 911 calls at around the time of the attack reporting a woman screaming, but found nothing. They received no other 911 calls. The indifference of the pedestrians echoed the infamous 1964 murder of Kitty Genovese in Kew Gardens, Queens.
Her desperate screams after being stabbed failed to rouse assistance from the dozen or so people many neighbors who heard them. “That’s unacceptable,” said a woman who lives in the building near where Tale-Yax was killed. “How can you be so heartless? If he’s dying, he might’ve been saved. If you don’t want to get involved, call 911 and leave.”
Another area resident, Ramon Bellasco, 46, said: “It’s no good. They needed to help and call the police. I don’t get it.” George Subraj, owner of Zara Realty, which owns the building next to the murder scene, also gave surveillance footage to the NYPD for its investigation of the case. The video shows an unidentified woman, standing about 5-foot-3 and wearing a jacket and skirt, walking down 144th Street near 88th Road with her cell phone in hand until.
As she walks under a protective scaffolding next to a building, a man is following her. He is described as 5-foot-6, wearing a green short sleeve shirt and dark pants with a green hat. As that man accosts the woman under the scaffolding, Tale-Yax walks toward them. The grainy video shows a scuffle, but most of the action is out of the security camera’s field of vision.
Within seconds, the killer is seen on the video running out from the scaffolding and up 144th St, as the woman heads off in the opposite direction. Tale-Yax then chases after his murderer, who had stabbed him several times in the torso with a knife, but immediately collapses face down onto the sidewalk. Within a minute or so, the first of a long series of people begins walking by Tale-Yax without going to his aid. That man, carrying a small bag, gave the dying Tale-Yax a glance before continuing on his way.
The victim’s body was claimed by someone whom the Medical Examiner’s Office declined to identify, and taken to a Brooklyn funeral home. No arrests have been made, and the police have been unable to identify the woman Tale-Yax was trying to help.