GREENBURGH, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A woman was arrested in Westchester County after she crashed a 9-year-old’s backyard birthday party.
Police say the woman, upset over noise, used ethnic slurs and assaulted the organizer, but she denies it.
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It was cakes, cookies and decorations galore for Saturday night’s Halloween-themed birthday party for Diana Navarro’s 9-year-old. She organized it in the yard of her cousin Erwin Gramajo’s house, located on a dead-end street in Greenburgh.
“We was having a really nice time with the family and friends when suddenly this lady show up,” Navarro told CBS2’s Lisa Rozner. “She just came to the house and started yelling and screaming, really bad words.”
“She was being racist, saying we were Hispanics … that we are here illegal and we should go back to our country if we wanna have parties,” Gramajo said.
The family told police neighbor Linda Pisano knocked over the food and other items.
“We keep asking her why, why she’s like that? And she just, um, turned around and she just scratched my face,” Navarro said.
Navarro says she had a cut on her face and her eyeglasses were broken.
The cops were called around 10:30 p.m., and Pisano was later arrested and charged with third-degree assault and criminal mischief as hate crimes.
Pisano admits she made a mess but denies being racist. In fact, she says people from the party attacked her.
“I have bruises on my spine, on my knee, all up my arm,” she said.
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She says this started when she walked over to ask them to turn down the music instead of calling police.
“The beat was boom boom, so my walls were shaking … I was sick with a cold and a cough, and I had a stroke and a heart transplant,” Pisano said. “Went in the front yard, and I said, ‘Who’s the owner, please?’”
She says all of a sudden, “Someone, I don’t know who, they said, ‘Get the f*** out of here. Who the f*** do you think you are?’”
That’s when she says she got upset, dumped desserts from the table and left, but she claims a group followed her, cursing.
“So with an open fist, not a fist, I didn’t want to punch anyone, with an open hand, I went like this to push them away. Someone was so close to me that evidently when I went to push them away, I hit her in the face,” Pisano said.
She says she has black-and-blue marks from getting beat up.
“What about some kind of accusations about yelling racial slurs, saying, ‘Go back to your country?’” Rozner asked.
“I’ve never, ever done that, and my job is an occupational therapist. I work in the Bronx. Every single one of my patients are either African American or Spanish, so I am the furthest thing from a racist and from yelling a hate crime,” Pisano said. “I chose to work in the Bronx. I wanted to work with this clientele, so to say this is a hate crime, I don’t get it and it hurts a bit … I think what they did could also be a hate crime against me because I’m gay, and I’m very, very upset that a very nasty cop, there were two very polite cops, the very nasty cop that arrested me didn’t even want to look at my scratches.”
Pisano says next time, she’ll call police, and the neighbors say they probably won’t have any parties again soon because they want to be good neighbors.
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No one had video of the arguments as they happened. CBS2 asked Greenburgh Police, but they did not get back to us.
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