• Thu. Feb 9th, 2023


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Suspect in Broadway Singing Coach’s Attack Arrested on Manslaughter Charge – The New York Times

A 26-year-old woman surrendered to New York City police on Tuesday in the fatal shoving of a beloved Broadway vocal coach earlier this month.

The police said the woman, Lauren Pazienza, shoved the coach, Barbara Maier Gustern, 87, from behind at about 8:30 p.m. on March 10 in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan, causing Ms. Gustern to fall and hit her head on the sidewalk. Ms. Gustern was hospitalized with a head injury and died five days later.

Ms. Pazienza, who according to the police is from Port Jefferson, Long Island, turned herself in on Tuesday morning with a lawyer and will face a manslaughter charge, the police said. A law enforcement official said Ms. Pazienza did not provide a statement to investigators, and a motive has not yet been determined.

Ms. Gustern, a longtime vocal coach, had worked with stars such as Debbie Harry, lead singer of the punk rock band Blondie, and the cast of the 2019 Broadway revival of the musical “Oklahoma!”

On the night she was attacked, Ms. Gustern had left her apartment to watch one of her students perform at Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater on Lafayette Street.

Ms. Gustern was able to give a description of her assailant to the police before succumbing to her injuries.

Ms. Pazienza’s arrest followed a dayslong search by New York City police, who posted photos and video of the attacker after Ms. Gustern’s death.

Relatives of Ms. Pazienza could not immediately be reached for comment.

Susan C. Beachy contributed research.