Police: Woodhull St. ‘mayor’ arrested for hurling glass bottle at neighbor

Louie, Louie: Notable Woodhull Street resident Louie Formisano during his dispute with the city over a vacant local lot.
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You can’t fight in this “City Hall.”

Police arrested the unofficial “mayor” of Woodhull Street and one of his neighbors after the pair allegedly hurled bottles at the other in a fight over a parking space on Sunday afternoon.

The argument allegedly began when George Psarras tried to park outside neighborhood character Louis Formisano’s Columbia Waterfront District house between Columbia and Hicks streets, but found it was taken up by another car, so went into the notable local’s garage to complain, Formisano’s lawyer claims.

“He was not satisfied with the amount of room that was available,” said attorney Jay Schwitzman.

The spat escalated and Psarras allegedly threw a water bottle at Formisano’s head and missed, according to Schwitzman — and the resident allegedly responded by pitching a glass bottle back with more accuracy, hitting and cutting Psarras’s head in an injury that later required several stitches, according to a criminal complaint.

Cops then arrived and collared both men. Formisano was charged with assault and criminal possession of a weapon, while Psarras was charged with menacing and criminal trespassing, according to police reports.

Formisano is well known to many in the area and to readers of this paper, both for his acts of neighborliness, such as plowing streets pro bono during snowstorms, as well as more divisive deeds, like the time he tidied up a decrepit city-owned lot and turned it into his own private park — which some celebrated as vigilante gardening, but others considered vandalism and trespassing.

“He considers himself to be mayor of the block and some people consider him to be that way too,” said a neighbor who asked not to be named out of fear of retaliation. “Anything that’s going on he’s going to get in the middle of it.”

We could not find a way to reach Psarras or his lawyers for comment.

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow her on Twitter @laurenk_gill
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Van the Man from Brunt and Pioneer says:
I would use my real name, but then I'd have to fight Louie.
March 29, 2017, 2:29 pm
Benny from Park Slope says:
Why is it that self-proclaimed "mayors" of neighborhoods are almost always douche bags?
March 30, 2017, 12:43 pm
Woody Woodhull says:
Louie doesn't even have a real garage, although one could argue the entire block serves as a garage for his countless, defensively-parked "vehicles." Parking on the block is nearly impossible because of him. Now when an incident like this happens in broad daylight, people who live here can see exactly what happens. For instance, forget bottles being thrown...Louie swung an ice scraper at his head. In front of the victim's kids. Which led to staples, not stitches. Class act. And Louie wasn't collared or cuffed...just led away cause he's a feeble old man that could still somehow hit the other guy's head with more "accuracy." This piece sounds like it was commissioned by Louie's lawyer.
April 2, 2017, 3:59 pm
#notmymayor from Woodhull says:
Louie is a thug and the neighborhood bully. Almost everyone in the neighborhood can't stand the guy because he gets in everyone's business, creeps on young women from the neighborhood, breaks the law when it is convenient for him, cuts down trees on the street he doesn't like, traps and (we think kills) the neighborhood stray cats, and hordes all the street parking (8-10 spots every day) with cars, ATVs, and trailers that he never drives (he only moves them around to block out spots so people other than his spoiled, entitled family can't park on the street).
Every one of his "good deeds" is self serving to him and his family. He and his family treat the entire block like it's their front yard and it makes a beautiful street annoying. You can't walk out your front door without having to deal with him.
Unfortunately people are afraid of him because he is so nasty and vengeful that if you stand up to him or go to the authorities, he will harass and threaten you, your family, and friends.
Oh, and his throwing a bottle is bull. He swung an ice chopper -a 4ft long steel-bladed tool used for chopping ice on the sidewalk- at another man's head and seriously injured him in front of the man's children. He should be charged with attempted murder.
April 5, 2017, 5:05 am

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