Southern Brooklyn

Video: Sheepshead Bay Leads City In Crime Increase, 61st Precinct Commander Gives Detailed Report


Deputy Inspector Georgios Mastrokostas of the 61st Precinct came before Community Board 15 last week to account for the nearly 50 percent jump in major crime in the community.

This year has so far seen a 47.7 uptick in the seven major CompStat crime categories. Leading the way is property crimes, including a 94.1 percent jump in robberies from last year, as well as a 77.5 percent increase in grand larceny, a 28.3 percent increase in burglaries, and a 25 percent increase in grand larceny auto.

Though felonious assaults and murders are down, and rape has only gone from five to six from last year, the Board expressed concern about the increases at its April meeting, and requested Mastrokostas’ presence to explain the rise in crime.

According to Mastrokostas, a number of factors are fueling the increase including a tough economy, an emerging drug problem and even good weather. The precinct commander noted that crime falls in cold weather, but this year’s mild winter had crooks working overtime.

Drugs and the economy continue to be ongoing factors, however. Mastrokostas noted that prescription drugs – particularly for opiates like OxyContin and Percoset – has been on the rise since 2009, and the expensive habit spurs users to look for easy money. Pills can cost as much as $30, he noted, and there have been 417 narcotics arrests within the command so far this year.

“Some of these individuals need up to 10 [pills] a day,” Mastrokostas said. “So you’re talking about a habit where they need $200 a day to support this habit.”

The public shouldn’t be so quick to overlook the precinct’s successes, according to Mastrokostas. Crime has been on a downward trend since 2008, when Mastrokostas took the helm of the precinct. In 2009 and 2010, this district led the city’s 76 commands in crime reduction (excluding the Central Park command). The first half of 2011 was on schedule to match 2010, but the second half of the year saw crime begin to rise.

That said, this year’s numbers puts the local precinct in fine company – of the city’s 76 precincts, 52 saw increases in crime – though the 61st Precinct leads in crime increases citywide.

Still, they’ve been locking up the perps, Mastrokostas said, noting that the precinct averages 66 arrests a week and has taken in more than 1,600 so far this year.

“The 61st Precinct is a large command. Five-and-a-half square miles,” he noted. “We do our best to police it and keep it safe.”

To that end, the city is giving the precinct a “critical response” in areas like the Sheepshead-Nostrand Houses, following a spate of violent crimes in the area.

“The borough tries to help out. Right now they’re sending into the [61st Precinct] 16 police officers per day,” he noted. “They get deployed in an area that’s constantly monitored and shifted around … [We have] 15 police cars and 30 officers deployed in and around [the Sheepshead-Nostrand Houses].”

But that kind of increase in manpower won’t last, he added.

“The city’s down cops all around, and there’s still a counter-terrorism mission out there,” Mastrokostas said. “The more cops, the better off we are. But the reality is that there’s less cops.”

Comment policy


  1. Guys. I can totally dress up as Batman and become the vigilante that Sheepshead Bay needs, but not the one that it deserves. 

  2. Is the “rise in crime” just from the crooked cops in the precinct or is it from the ones we call into to 911 that the crooked cops from the 61 do not respond too?

    Giorgio has been putting on quite a bit of weight there.. all of those free dinners in Raputin and the National with the “doggy bags” he gets must be responsible.

  3. Never believe someone who tries to look like Elvis Presley shortly before dying on the toilet bowl.

  4. Wonder Woman was put on the No Fly list by the TSA. Her invisible air plane was impounded. She is stuck on Themyscira.  

  5. 61 absolutely does not respond to 911 calls.If it won’t get them in the newspaper they will not show half the time.If it is something like a car crash and it is needed for them to show for insurance reasons…average time of arrival…1hr45min.61 just don’t give a shit.

  6. guess they are all to busy filling their TICKET QUOTAS with bogus tix…  we just got one on Emmons Ave and we are pissed as hell about it..  the ticket was for an expired meter (issued 21 minutes after we had parked and paid for 2 hours) but when we got back to our car the meter still had 21 minutes left on it…   gonna have that crooked traffic cop C TAYOR’s badge by the time we are through contesting this criminal fraud!   oh and we werent the only ones who got ticketed by this person either and NO ONES meters were expired!!

  7. Miss the old area sometimes, but more than not, glad I’m now far removed from the grime, crime and corruption.

  8. How would you prove the meter wasn’t expired? Seems like the cop knows this is the easiest way to meet his quota since it’s his word against the drivers.

  9. first… we immediately called 311 to make a formal complaint while we were at the car, then we immediately did the same thing with the civilian complaint revue board…  one thing in our favor was that there was another traffic agent parked 5 cars away who, when asked to come over and verify that there was still 21 minutes on our meter REFUSED, then hid her badge number and bolted from the scene but NOT before we got her name… which was added to our complaints.   then there are the other people who also got bogus tickets… AND the photo we took of our car and the meter has a time stamp on it,  none of this is concrete proof but these agents who give quota tix dont care if they are contested as their only reason for doing this is to WRITE the tix and fullfill their quota.  they usually do NOT show up in court if you demand a court hearing (tix are dismissed if they dont show) and they count on most people not bothering to contest the tix and just paying it or ignoring it.   We are the kind of people who will stand on principle… if the ticket is not dismissed by email contest we WILL demand a court hearing… 

    People should not just accept this kind of thing…you can successfully ‘fight city hall’  if you are willing to get into the ring  🙂

    Officer C TAYLOR quota ticketed the wrong car last night…hopefully he (she?) will learn a lesson from this and NOT try and do that again…and hopefull our action to contest that ticket will save other people who just want to go for a nice dinner on Emmons Ave from becoming the next victims of the ticket quota scam.  HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY  🙂

  10. Oh Oh!  Somebody (or rather, lots of people) aren’t doing their jobs.  The 61 needs alot of help – the help of officers who dont just ride by situations or sit in their cars sleeping.  Our dear officers have some ‘splaining to do!

  11. Don’t pay it.  Send the ticket in with a copy of the receipt from the muni meter.

    I got a ticket last year for parking in a handicapped space (which I never do, and hate the people who do) in front of the Wine Village on Nostrand Avenue, allegedly on a sunday morning.  The ticket was not on my car that day, or the next day, but on Tuesday, all of  sudden, it appeared tucked into the side of my hood.  Sunday and Monday I went to the car wash, and did alot of other things, and the ticket was not there.  At the time and date on the ticket, I was in the nail salon.  Phony tickets, Yeah – and lots of them!

    I like the way you posted the cops name.  That’s what we should all do from now on – post the cop’s NAME AND BADGE #.  Let SB residents show how the cops in our precinct are crooked!

  12. The one thing I love about Muni Meters is the receipt.  I always try to park in a muni meter area. 

  13. There is such a thing as ticket quotas.  I have several family members and acquaintences who were / are on the job.

  14. Isn’t it time to demand a Federal Overseer for that entire Precinct? Why have no additional charges been brought against the four other officers who helped set up Mr. Hockenjos? That alone demands a Federal Investigation. Had Mr. Hockenjos not had surveillance cameras, he was facing seven years in prison for “assaulting” a cop. Why aren’t the other officers who were there and never said a word being charged too? That is CONSPIRACY. Apply the RICO Statutes to the 61.

    Cops don’t care less about the public, law or service. Their only concern is their bloated pensions and lifetime bennies, milking both for as much as they can before leaving NY for the Carolinas and saddling the rest of us with the bill.

  15. There is nothing to miss. Just think of the worst things you can remember and multiply that and you’ll have exactly what is here now.

  16. Why would you frequent any business in Sheepshead Bay? 

    With a car, you can drive to nicer areas, with free parking, when you come out your windows aren’t broken with your spare change robbed, tow trucks driven by hateful minorities running scams specifically targeting Caucasians aren’t hijacking your car for parking in “their” lot and demanding $250 to let it go, better deals, nicer people, you aren’t treated like a mark by a con artist speaking terrible english.. and the local cops aren’t looking to fill their ticket quota every time you pull out of your driveway.

  17. I am going to drop a link.Alot of you heard about the case even though newspapers brush it off but Times magazine and…well,…and follow the links and google the names and you will find a trail leading next door

  18. The only thing that bothers me here is the presenter’s blame the victim mentality and speculative list of causes.  If you want a safer neighborhood, you have to demand accountability and specific policing tactics. 

  19. Well if no one owned anything, there would be nothing to steal. If no one drove a car, no one would get a ticket. It makes perfect sense. Then the heroes could spend all of their time getting free dinners at mob owned restaurants and suspicious take home “doggy bags.” You foolish civies.. how you inconvenience them by trying to report crimes. 

  20. there is no court hearing for parking tickets, it doesn’t work like with the moving violations. you go to department of finance, request a hearing, you see the judge the same day and tell him/her your story with the supporting evidence, the agent who issued the ticket DOES NOT need to show up.  

  21. A bit harsh on the cops… Undoubtedly a few corrupt ones, and as someone pointed out, a few too many chatting up the females instead of doing their job.

    By and large though, it’s a tough job, one always open to criticism with little praise, but a job I think the 61 does very well.

  22. I’ll do you a favor and quote the article the rest of us remember well (see Lisanne’s comment for a link):

    “This city is going on. It’s a day like every other day,” Bloomberg said, suggesting people go out and shop or take in a Broadway show. “There’s no reason [for] everybody to panic.”

  23. What really gets my goat is that dozens of tickets can easily be written against double parkers and traffic obstructors on Ocean Avenue from Sheepshead Bay to Avenue J.   This has been a REAL (not fabricated) problem that deserves attention…..Not searching for places to drop a ticket.   Oh but wait…..That would be logical.

  24. There is a Department of Finance hearing. When you go there in person the are going to offer you a settlement, if you do not agree with the settlement  you see the judge the same day (if you dont want to waste alot of time waiting in lines go to Staten Island location, you could be in and out within one hour over there), you tell the judge your story, show him/her the supporting evidence and the judge issues a decision on the spot. article 78 is for an appeal on a a case after the hearing is complete and the issuing agent still does not need to be there.

  25. I don’t want to drive to other areas- I totally believe in utilizing the services of my local businesses.  Why shouldn’t I?  That was a really dumb question.  I have everything I need and want in Sheepshead Bay. If you don’t appreciate the area, nobody is forcing you to live, work, shop here.  My windows have never been broken, my car  has never been vandalized, my tires have never been robbed, I have had extremely few negative experiences here.  I have lived in SB all of my llife, and cannot think of any other place I’d like to be.  So, take your negative remarks and go somewhere else.

  26. They don’t give tickets around those areas you mentioned because the police are told to lay off the “Jewish” communities because they have such heavy influence and power. You tell me how many times you’ve seen a Jew commit blatant traffic violations and get ticketed for it. Jews own the NYPD. What a shame. They even get their own dedicated patrol on Ocean Parkway. 

  27. They pay for that private security firm to patrol their blocks about 250 a house a month. Get everyone on your block to agree to that and hire them as well. 

  28. And deduct it from your taxes????   SheepsheadBayer was talking about vehicular summons. What I witnessed in the 80’s was being told to stay away from Eastern Parkway where the temple is and the surrounding blocks South of Eastern Parkway. Giving tickets to private cars parked on the walks was not a option.


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