UPPER WEST SIDERS PUSH ACLU’S ‘FREEDOM CITIES’ CAMPAIGN AT LOCAL NYPD MEETING

Captain Levon Holley Commanding Officer of the 20th Precinct updates the community
Captain Levon Holley speaks to community members at Mondays meeting.

By Pam Yoder

NYPD officials are seeing several new faces at community council meetings, as people have embraced a call by the ACLU to get more involved in your local community to counteract federal policies.

The ACLU’s Freedom Cities Campaign “encourages and supports grassroots activism aimed at driving policy change at the local level.” The Trump administration has said that “sanctuary cities” like New York, which limit cooperation with federal immigration agents, could lose federal security funding.

On Monday, dozens of people attended a community council meeting at the 20th precinct on West 82nd Street to ask about the precinct’s policies when it comes to undocumented immigrants. A similar scene occurred at the 24th precinct meeting last week. (The 20th covers the UWS below 86th, while the 24th covers the area above 86th.)

Community Council Executive Board President Sean Grissom speaks to packed stationhouse
Community Council Executive Board President Sean Grissom speaks to packed stationhouse.

Several people raised questions about how the precinct handles undocumented immigrants. What if an undocumented immigrant is doing something harmless like selling flavored ices on the street? What happens when an undocumented immigrant is in police custody?

Captain Holley responded that all persons arrested need to be identified, with their scars, tattoos, immigration status, and identity recorded.

But do they use this information to contact U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement? “No.” Captain Holley said. He emphasized that a person’s immigration status has no bearing on their policing. If there is a felony arrest (and there are 170 Felonies they are legally bound by) they will have to cooperate with ICE, but that ICE has never contacted the 20th Precinct. And while they do fingerprint for identity purposes, the NYPD is not a repository – they use a database upstate.

He reiterated that they do not call ICE. There is no ICE agent in the police department, like there is no FBI, ATF or DEA agent in the police department.( https://www.ice.gov/about) Captain Holley clarified; “We are not a force multiplier for ICE.”

The group seemed to be reassured, one resident saying that he’s a 20 year resident in the 20th Precinct and “I’ve never been here!” and that they’re learning a lot from politics now.

Holley also went over crime stats, which are down in the neighborhood and the city this year.

There were some other community updates too:

As part of 2017 National Crime Victims Right Week a ‘Healing Thriving Rising’ Candlelight Vigil will be at West End Collegiate Church on April 2nd (https://johnjay.collegiatelink.net/organization/externalaffairs/calendar/details/1247171)

Helen Rosenthal’s Participatory Budgeting 2017 Voting Has Begun, you can vote on-line or in person.(http://helenrosenthal.com/)

State Senator Marisol Alcantara will have a pop-up office at the St. Agnes Library. (https://www.nysenate.gov/senators/marisol-alcantara/contact)

Scott Stringer’s Town Hall is on April 6th at Goddard Riverside Community Center (http://comptroller.nyc.gov/event/upper-west-side-town-hall/)

The District Attorney’s Office has a 2017 High School Internship Program where interns receive a $150 weekly stipend. (http://manhattanda.org/high-school-internship)

Gale Brewer, Manhattan Borough President has a Help Guide, instead of calling 311, you can call direct numbers (http://manhattanbp.nyc.gov/downloads/pdf/MBPOHelpGuide.pdf)

NEWS | 8 comments | permalink
    1. John says:

      What is wrong with turning criminals over to ICE? I do not understand this mentality. It is almost like saying our laws do not matter and should be abolished. That is a society I would not want to be part of.

      • Mark says:

        Cops get away with breaking the law all the time. A man was choked and murdered in broad daylight and the murderer still receives a paycheck our taxes pay for. I presume that kind of lawbreaking is exactly the kind you’d want to uphold.

      • Ellen says:

        If you have committed one of 170 serious felonies, you are turned over ICE. The 4th and 10th amendment make it clear that local governments should not be doing the work of the federal government, especially without judicial warrants.

        • Scott says:

          What if any of those 170 serious crimes were committed more than 5 years ago Ellen. Care to comment on that?

    2. Independent says:

      Here’s hoping the President and the Attorney General will see to it that all of the mayors and governors declaring “sanctuary” cities and states and defying the law by harboring, aiding and abetting illegal aliens will be shown the “sanctuary” of a penitentiary. Let’s see some real equality under the Law.

      Another idea is making all those who advocate for and encourage such invasion, esp. by so-called “refugees” (mostly a scam; I would include links but doing so would likely cause my comment to be rejected) have to live amongst such individuals, right in the heart of the neighborhoods where they are most concentrated.

    3. Independent says:

      A follow-up to my previous comment, in which I address matters and make points that are germane not only to this story and comment thread but to any number of past ones as well.

      1.) Let me be clear: I do not mean to suggest that there are not also some legitimate cases of real refugees. There is much documented evidence, however, that,
      a) the term “refugee”, in at least many and quite likely most of the cases that are under discussion/ in-question here, is used fraudulently, and,
      b) much violent and heinous crime has been committed, in the U.S. and other Western nations, by these so-called “refugees”
      and
      c) there is much obfuscation, denial, whitewashing, ignoring and covering-up, on the part of politicians, advocates and the media, of both a) and b)

      Again, I could back-up all of these claims with links but I fear, based on past experience, that were I to do so, my comment would be rejected. And this, itself, illustrates a fundamental problem that lies at the root of much of what is under discussion here: A circular dynamic in which the boundaries of acceptable thought and public discussion are dictated by a privileged elite and maintained by careful control of the information and other content* that the public is fed for consumption. That such a phenomenon exists and that it is to the detriment of the majority of the populace, have long been recognized by dissidents on both The Left as well as on The Right.

      *Other content such as that which promotes celebrity and sports worship; a glut of freely accessible pornography (most of which makes the Playboy of yesterday look wholesome by comparison); the narcissistic frivolity, banality and vapidity promoted, encouraged and facilitated by (often actually anti-)”social media”; and any number of other diversions and distractions. Pānis et circēnsēs (bread and circuses).

      2.) At any rate, my challenge remains valid: How many of those who advocate for allowing the nation to continue to be flooded by immigrants, especially “refugees” (while self-righteously condemning anyone who opposes such policies) actually live amongst such individuals– in the neighborhoods where they are concentrated– themselves?

      3.) Finally, I will yet again note that the claims and accusations of the powers-that-be notwithstanding, none of the nationalist, immigration-restrictionist positions that I espouse equate-to “hatred”. (And, certainly, not to anything that could be likened, at all reasonably, to Nazism. The terms “Nazi” and “Hitler” have been so abused by The Left as to have lost meaning and make a mockery out of the true evil that such terms originally represented.) I do not hate and certainly do not wish harm upon anyone based merely on such accidents of birth as race or national, ethnic or religious origin.

      3-a.) Particularly rich are when such attacks come, as they very often do, from those who support the warmongering, interventionist foreign policy that I and my fellows on the “Basket of Deplorables” that I inhabit, oppose. (Especially given the fact that the victims of said policies are overwhelmingly Muslim and Arab.)

      • Independent says:

        Please note that the negative characterizations and the criticism and censure in my above comment were not directed at West Side Rag in particular. They were directed, rather, in general, at the mainstream media and any number of individuals and organizations. I was concerned that might not be clear.