It took a while for the 66th Precinct Community Council meeting to get going last Thursday, what with catching up on the summer’s activities, posing for photos, and the return of Community Affairs Sgt. Michael Andreano as the new lieutenant in charge of Special Operations.
The meeting was held at Community Board 12’s offices at 5910 13th Avenue in Borough Park, and the first order of business was State Assemblyman Dov Hikind’s extended praise for those who do—i.e., give to the community—and for what Captain Quick had accomplished in his six months at the precinct.
Specifically, he cited a problem that’s bedeviled the 66 for quite a while and through several commands—trucks camping out overnight alongside the Washington Cemetery. Captain Quick has had his officers install boots (a tire lock or clamp) on truck wheels. Ever since, Assemblyman Hikind continued, there have been no trucks parked along 21 Avenue.
“Quick has been remarkable,” Assemblyman Hikind said. “I’m here to say thank you for the amazing job you’ve done in the community. You’re tough and you’re soft.”
Accepting the compliments, Capt. Quick said he plans to beat former Commander Peter DeBlasio’s 4¾-year record as 66 Precinct Commander and stay five years. Since DeBlasio’s transfer in January 2010, subsequent commanders John Sprague and Michael Deddo have averaged around three.
Summertime was not so easy in the 66th, Quick reported. In addition to a son’s murder of his sleeping father, Ramadan events, and lots of street fairs, Quick called Sgt. Michael Andreano’s NYPD-mandated transfer to the 60 Precinct upon his promotion to lieutenant “bittersweet.”
“It was three of the longest months,” said Capt. Quick welcoming Lt. Andreano back. Andreano, he said, had “pulled the community together.” In his seven years as a 66 Precinct sergeant, hard-working Andreano has worn more and more—and more—hats!
The murder prompted the Precinct to add a “promising” third young officer, a Pakistani man, to its domestic violence team. The goal is to address domestic issues in the South Asian community before they fester.According to Capt Quick the week’s CompStat figures for total crimes showed a slight uptick in the 28-day figures (which the Police monitor closely) compared to those from last year at the same time (YTD), and for the week. The good news is arrests are way up: 80 percent for the month.
Burglaries are down slightly for the year (by 9% for 2015 compared with 2014). But in the past few months, which coincided with the summer vacation exodus, there has been a slight increase (25.8% in the 28-day figure). Unlocked doors, windows, and garages contribute, Commander Quick said. Putting in a dead bolt or a window brake and getting a crime prevention survey from the precinct are ways to thwart thieves. For your own personal survey, call Officer Michael Riomao at (718) 851–5620 to make an appointment.
Felonious assault has also jumped in the past 28-day period from 8 to 13, a 62.5 percent increase. By definition these figures include assaults with a weapon or a victim over 65. Like rape, the people usually know one another.
There was also a major increase in the number of rapes. These have gone from 6 to 18 for the year, a 200% increase over last year to date (YTD). In the past 28 days there have been four, averaging one rape a week. In all but one case, Capt. Quick said, the victim and rapist knew one another. The increase is city-wide and may partly reflect active encouragement by victims’ rights groups to report them. The precinct has arrested six people.
After the initial police contact, the police say, it appears some rape victims change their mind and avoid further contact with the police; or if the charge is against a boyfriend or relative, the victim might succumb to family/rapist pressure to keep quiet. Others misrepresent or exaggerate what actually happened and the police alter the charges accordingly. What percentage choose to actively pursue their cases and how successful the police are in arresting those perps is unknown.
In questions from the audience, someone wondered how successful the precinct was at curbing motorcycle speeding on Ocean Parkway. Not very. According to Highway Safety Sgt. Gavin Hoop, this is difficult to do.
And electric bikes, another asked. Enforcement is in the works, Capt. Quick said. The NYPD is conducting “enforcement operations” and educating users on what is allowed. The public can expect to see ticketing in the future, though no official date is known.
For those offended by public marijuana smoking, Capt. Quick encouraged those aware of specific locations to call the precinct and tell the Conditions Unit what they know.
The roll out of the new neighborhood police plan, should start happening by the end of the year. The plan will put more officers on patrol, with time to revisit or get to know people better. Some officers will spend three hours a day in the community, free of 311 duties. Internal zones will be redesigned to accommodate the new focus on local needs. The precinct will still have plainclothes officers, domestic violence units, and traffic safety officers, but officers in some of the specialized units will be moved to patrol.
The next 66th Precinct Community Council meeting is Thursday, October 15, 7:30pm at Community Board 12’s office on 13th Avenue and 59th Street.