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FDNY firefighter will claim self-defense after bar brawl

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A New York City firefighter will claim self-defense after allegedly socking a man in the head outside a Queens tavern early Saturday — a punch that may have caused the rival’s death.

An attorney for Justin Deieso, 35, of Whitestone, revealed the defense strategy after his client was released without bail on misdemeanor assault charges Saturday night.

“It’s a case of self-defense for sure,” the lawyer, Robert Gallo, told The Post.

“He will appear in court as required, he’s maintaining his innocence, and the case is presently expected to stay a misdemeanor offense,” Gallo said, adding “there may be witnesses” to support the self-defense claim.

Deieso’s misdemeanor assault charge could be elevated depending on victim Devin Deegan’s cause of death, law enforcement sources said.

City coroners are determining whether Deegan, 55, died because bar-brawl punch — thrown by Deieso, police say — was so powerful, it caused him to crack his skull on the pavement behind the Terrace Inn Bar & Grill on Francis Lewis Boulevard in Whitestone.

When first responders rushed to the tavern at 4 a.m., Deegan was lying on the ground with trauma to the back of his head, police said.

Deegan was an unmarried, childless electrician who cared for his parents until they died — and lived alone for the past five years with a gray pet rabbit that he doted on, neighbors told The Post.

He had already set out Easter eggs in his backyard for area kids, neighbors noted of the treats visible Saturday afternoon.

“Always lent a hand, especially to us older people,” said one neighbor. “I never saw him lose his temper.”

Added another neighbor, “We were friends. We all played together in the street growing up. He walked away from fights. Took care of his mother until the bitter end.”

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Suspect arrested in fatal Brooklyn stabbing

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Police have apprehended a suspect in the fatal December stabbing of a Brooklyn man, cops said on Saturday.

The suspect, John Headley, 32, also of Brooklyn, was taken into custody Friday and charged with murder and weapons possession for the Dec. 12 knifing of Ken Baird, 37, police said.

Baird was stabbed multiple times in the chest following a dispute on Crown Street near Utica Avenue in Crown Heights at about 6:40 p.m., police said.

EMS transported Baird to King County Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, cops said.

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Man dies after jumping from Staten Island Ferry

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A 53-year-old man died Saturday after jumping from the Staten Island Ferry into the chilly waters of New York Harbor, police said.

NYPD Harbor launch officers pulled the man out of the water after responding to reports of a jumper near the Whitehall Ferry Terminal in Manhattan at around 2 p.m.

“He jumped off the ferry as it pulled away from the dock,” an NYPD spokesman told The Post. He jumped off the Ferryboat Andrew J. Barberi, police said.

The unidentified victim was removed to Pier 11 and transported to New York-Presbyterian Hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly after 3:10 p.m.

A newsstand worker said there were “about 50 or so emergency people” at Pier 11 following a valiant effort — which included CPR — to save the man’s life.

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An NYPD spokesman says the 53-year-old man “jumped off the ferry as it pulled away from the dock.”

Michael Dalton

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The 53-year-old man was transported to New York-Presbyterian Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Michael Dalton

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Kemp Lashes M.L.B. as Republicans Defend Georgia’s Voting Law

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Mr. Kemp, who is gearing up to run for re-election in 2022, has striven to re-enter the good graces of Republican voters after becoming a central political target of former President Donald J. Trump because of his refusal to help Mr. Trump overturn the state’s election results last year. A former secretary of state of Georgia who has his own record of decisions that made voting harder for the state’s residents, he is again a key G.O.P. voice leading the charge on the issue.

On Saturday, he repeatedly tried to paint the league’s decision as driven by Stacey Abrams, the voting rights advocate and former Democratic candidate for governor in Georgia who is seen as likely to challenge Mr. Kemp again next year.

Ms. Abrams, one of the most prominent critics of Georgia’s voting law, has pushed back on calls for sports leagues and corporations to boycott the state. She said on Friday that she was “disappointed” baseball officials had pulled the All-Star Game but that she was “proud of their stance on voting rights.”

In defending the law in Georgia, Mr. Kemp singled out two Democratically controlled states, New York and Delaware, and compared their voting regulations with the new law in Georgia. Those states do not offer as many options for early voting as Georgia does, but they have also not passed new laws instituting restrictions on voting.

“In New York, they have 10 days of early voting,” Mr. Kemp said (New York actually has nine). “In Georgia, we have a minimum of 17, with two additional Sundays that are optional in our state. In New York, you have to have an excuse to vote absentee. In Georgia, you can vote absentee for any reason.”

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