Jurors deliberate over last 2 'Black Sunday' defendants

A second jury in the "Black Sunday" trial continued to deliberate Tuesday the fate of the landlord and corporate owner of a building in which two firefighters were killed in 2005.

Cesar Rios, who ran the East 178th Street building, and its management company face charges of second-degree manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and second-degree reckless endangerment in the deaths of Lt. Curtis Meyran and firefighter John Bellew.

Prosecutors have argued that Rios, the management company and two tenants, Caridad Coste and Rafael Castillo, were responsible for the firefighters' deaths for allegedly erecting illegal partitions inside apartments to collect more rent.

Prosecutors claimed the partitions blocked the fire escape and forced the firefighters to jump four stories to their deaths. A separate jury cleared Coste and Castillo of all charges Feb. 13 after deciding there wasn't enough evidence to prove the partitions blocked the fire escape.

2 tenants at 'Black Sunday' trial found not guilty Closing arguments presented in 'Black Sunday' trial Surviving firefighter testifies in 'Black Sunday' trial Jurors hear radio transmissions in 'Black Sunday' trialTestimony continues in 'Black Sunday' trial Defendants in 'Black Sunday' case go on trial

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."