Charge youths in park explosion

Two juveniles have been charged with four counts of second-degree assault after they allegedly threw jugs containing an explosive substance, burning several people in a Jackson Heights park.
Rofolfo M. and David F. are alleged to have filled soda bottles with a combustible substance, which exploded on impact, injuring several adults and two infants, according to a spokesperson for the New York City Law Department. The attack occurred around 8 p.m. on Saturday, July 21, in a playground near Junction Boulevard and 34th Avenue.
Police said they were unsure what substance was in the jugs that caused them to explode. They also did not release the suspects’ last names because of their age.
A mother and her infant received the most severe injuries, but officials did not know their respective conditions as of press time.
Toni Diaz, who was in the park when the incident occurred, said a group of Hispanic and African-American teenagers were huddled together when the attack happened. She estimated 20 people were in the park when the containers were tossed.
Diaz, her niece and her niece’s daughter were all splashed with the solution and suffered burns to their bodies. The three were shielded from the brunt of the attack by their stroller, which received severe damage.
“I don’t know why we pulled the baby out of the stroller,” the Corona resident said. “We were lucky.”
Even though some were hurt, Diaz said it was fortunate more people weren’t injured because the jugs were thrown in a less crowded area of the park, away from where a majority of children were playing. Diaz said that area residents are having a hard time comprehending the attacks.
“They couldn’t believe something like this happened, that the kids would play this prank,” she said.
She continued by saying that she rarely visits the park and has no plans to return in the future.
“I don’t feel like going back to the park,” Diaz said. “Too many bad memories.”

More from Around New York