The New York Post’s Sunday cover is taking some heat.
It concerns the discovery of Menachem “Max” Stark's body found burned and suffocated in a Long Island dumpster; the headline characterizes the Brooklyn real estate developer as a "slumlord" and asks: “Who didn’t want him dead?”
New York State Sen. Simcha Felder, D-Brooklyn, wants the Post to apologize.
“I condemn in the strongest possible terms the incredibly insensitive and crass cover of today’s New York Post which mocks the kidnapping and brutal murder of Menachem Stark,” Felder said in a statement, WCBS noted.
“The Post must issue an immediate apology to the Stark family and to all New Yorkers for its egregious behavior and failure to exercise any judgment whatsoever in this matter.”
Democratic City Councilman Stephen Levin also condemned the cover.
“The New York Post’s unbelievably offensive headline this morning comes the day after Mr. Stark’s family and children, as well as an entire community, laid him to rest and are still mourning his death,” he said in a statement, WCBS reported.
“For the New York Post to suggest that a person deserved to be murdered is sickening and reaches a new low. The entire community is outraged by such a vulgar headline that is so offensive and horrific. The New York Post should pull their story and issue an apology to the family and community that are still in mourning.”
The Post reported that Stark was allegedly deep in debt before his murder and was part of numerous shady real estate transactions, WCBS said. “Any number of people wanted to kill this guy,” a law-enforcement source told the newspaper, WCBS added.
The Post released a statement late Sunday afternoon in response to the controversy.
“The Post does not say Mr. Stark deserved to die but our reporting showed that he had many enemies, which may have led to the commission of this terrible crime,” the statement said, WCBS noted. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this time of loss.”
Twitchy posted quite a few tweets outraged at the cover, along with one that brings up anti-semitism:
Here are a few others:
A Change.org petition telling the Post to "stop the hate" drew nearly 4,800 signers as of 8:35 p.m Sunday.
“We are saddened and dumbfounded how people can commit such heinous crimes against anyone, but especially against such a generous person who wouldn’t hurt a fly,” said Rabbi David Neiderman, executive director of the United Jewish Organizations of Williamsburg, in a news release, WCBS reported.
“Every resource must be expended to apprehend the criminals responsible and we call on anyone with information about this crime to come forward.”
More from WCBS:
Surveillance video shows Stark being kidnapped late Thursday night. The 39-year-old victim left his Southside Associates real estate office, at 331 Rutledge St. in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, when two suspects struggled with him and forced him into a light colored 2006 or 2007 Dodge Caravan.
Stark was likely duct-taped, police said.
The suspects drove off with the victim inside. The minivan was last seen heading east on Broadway in Brooklyn, police said.
A day later, his partially burned body was found inside a Dumpster at a Getty gas station on Cuttermill Road in Great Neck, Long Island.
Here's surveillance video of what may be Stark's kidnapping: