By Pam Yoder
Local residents questioned the captain of the 24th precinct this week about his policies on detaining immigrants, given the Trump administration’s emphasis on deporting people who are in the U.S. illegally. The 24th precinct covers the Upper West Side from the North side of 86th Street up.
Nancy Ellman, a longtime resident of the neighborhood, said she respects and thanks the local NYPD officers and has had good experiences with the NYPD. She said that she and other residents in the room are very concerned about what she called the Trump administration’s radical immigration policies. Fearful of the community being torn apart, she wants to make sure the ACLU’s 9 “model” state and local law enforcement policies and rules jibe with local policies to enable the city to be branded as a Freedom City. This is part of the ACLU’s Freedom Cities campaign. The Freedom Cities Action Guide is posted here.
Captain William Burke, the new commanding officer at the precinct, emphasized that policies need to come down through the department chain of command. They can’t commit to policies issued by the ACLU. Captain Burke did clarify the policy they operate under, paraphrased here: “We enforce the policies of the New York City Police Department. If a person is arrested – we do not ask their status. A victim of a crime comes forward, we do not ask their status. We do not ask immigration status. Unchanged in my years here. The local precinct is not participating in hunting for undocumented immigrants. If they have committed a crime, we will hunt for them the same as anybody else.” The residents concluded with approval, saying they hope the NYPD could be a model for other cities.
The other announcements and issues covered at the meeting:
Local residents expressed concerns about the lack of snow removal at corners, making people walk in the road, Captain Burke said they would notify Sanitation, and that local merchants have four hours to clear the sidewalk after a storm. There were also concerns about street lights being out and a request to have patrolling officers notify when lights are out to deter crime. Residents of a HUD building at 980 Columbus Avenue, whose residents are mostly seniors, say they are being intimidated by some youths who do not live there. They hang out in the stairwells and landings.
Captain Burke went over the crime stats, and singled out a scam that effects mostly elderly residents called ‘Postal Vision’, they’re reaching out as a crime prevention campaign to warn about thieves that target mailboxes and steal checks and alter them. These thieves usually have a mailbox key, and they’ve even robbed postal employees for these mailbox keys. They take checks and chemically wash them. The captain recommends taking your payments to the post office and mailing them from there.
There’s also a way the officers can be recognized for the good deeds they do through the NYPD’s smartphone, the Craft App. Once verified by a supervisor, these deeds collect towards recommendations for promotions. You can also see some of these goods deeds and successes profiled on the 24th precinct’s Twitter page. https://twitter.com/NYPD24Pct/status/841353293486051330
Local Political Announcements:
Rachel Joseph, Manhattan DA’s office, Hate Crime Forum:
March 23, 2017 at 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Edward A. Reynolds High School, 140 W. 102nd St., Gym, New York, NY 10025
Shelly spoke on behalf of the City Council $1 mil participatory budgeting project, how to spend for public projects. In District 7 of Manhattan, City Council Member Mark Levine is having a vote kick off on Sunday, March 26th from 12 – 2 pm at the district office, 500 West 141st St at Amsterdam Ave. Voting will also be open from Monday, March 27th to Saturday, April 1st. Councilmember Levine is also hosting Coffee Break on Sunday, March 26th at 9:30am at 929 Amsterdam Avenue between 105th and 106th Streets. He’s offering to have thoughtful discussion regarding the neighborhood with fellow residents. www.marklevine.nyc/coffee3
Marie from Councilmember Helen Rosenthal’s office shared that on their $1 mil participatory budgeting project ballot is van for the 24th Precinct Auxiliary Police. This drew a smattering of applause.
Mike for City Comptroller Scott Stringer invited everyone to attend an Upper West Side Town Hall on April 6th at Goddard Riverside.
Brian Benjamin is the new democratic candidate nominated for senate.
Contact Information for the 24th Precinct:
Precinct: (212) 678-1811
Community Affairs: (212) 678-1803
Community Policing: (212) 678-1649
Crime Prevention: (212) 678-1850
Domestic Violence: (212) 678-1850
Youth Officer: (212) 678-1828
Auxiliary Coordinator: (212) 678-1815
Detective Squad: (212) 678-1863
President: Tom Burnett
Meetings: The 24th Precinct community council meets the third Wednesday of each month at 7:00 P.M. at the 24th Precinct. The 24th Precinct Community Council has 370 members and regularly features a guest speaker who addresses different community concerns. The 24th Precinct Community Council has been very successful in bridging the gap between the Police and the community.