NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An icon in the gay community was found dead in his Upper West Side apartment on Wednesday.

There were no signs of forced entry, and nothing was taken from the fourth floor apartment where Savyon Zabar, 54, was found strangled, 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reported.

“I’m not thrilled if anyone gets killed or strangled, but if it’s something terrible, you know who wants it right?” neighbor Joseph said.

Zabar — known as ‘Big Ben’ — was the former owner of the now defunct Chelsea nightclub Esquelita.

Jonathan said he had a big heart and was a good friend.

“I used to help him you know like ah, you know just doing errands. I don’t know. He was a really good friend for sure,” he said.

Investigators were questioning Zabar’s roommate on Friday.


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