Two dead in Astoria stabbings

By Nathan Duke

The unsolved stabbings were the third and fourth homicides of 2006 in the 114th Precinct, following the New Year's Day shooting of two men, one from Syracuse and the other from Hempstead, L.I., in front of the A.Q. Juice Bar on 27th Avenue in Astoria. No arrests have been made for any of the four murders, police said.The Ridgewood man, 42-year-old Ervin Zimonjic, died from stab wounds he received Friday outside the Santorini Cafe, located at 25-98 Steinway St. in Astoria, police said. Zimonjic was stabbed around 2:35 a.m. during an argument with two unknown men outside the cafe, police said.Police said they do not know the reason for the dispute, which began inside the cafe and ended in front of the business with Zimonjic's stabbing, or the two men's identities. They fled the scene.Zimonjic was pronounced dead at Elmhurst Hospital a little over three hours later, police said.Published reports said Zimonjic, a construction worker, is survived by a wife and two children. Police said the investigation was ongoing.The fourth homicide in the 114th Precinct occurred around 5:30 p.m. Monday at 12-12 31st Ave., police said. Officers responded to a call from a passerby that an assault had taken place in the building and found a 45-year-old Mexican immigrant with multiple stab wounds in the basement of the building.The man, whose identity has been withheld, was pronounced dead at the scene. No arrests had been made as of Wednesday and police said the investigation was continuing. Published reports said the man lived in a single-room occupancy at the address of the stabbing and worked at a car wash.The year's first Queens homicide happened early New Year's Day when Carlos Cintron, 17, of Glendale, was stabbed to death while trying to break up a fight between two of his friends. Police arrested Cintron's longtime friend, Juan Montanez, 20, of the Bronx, in the stabbing. Montanez was charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon at his arraignment in Queens Criminal Court, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.Reach reporter Nathan Duke by email at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 156.

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