NYPD: ‘Phenomenal’ Decrease in Upper West Side Crime Rates

Deputy Inspector Timothy Malin, 20th Precinct Commanding Officer.

By Joy Bergmann

Of the 77 precincts in New York City, the 20th Precinct has shown the largest decline in crime – year to date – compared to 2018, Deputy Inspector Timothy Malin announced at Monday night’s Community Council Meeting. “We’re down 42.8% versus last year,” he said.

The increasing safety of the area continues a trend seen in the regularly updated CompStat reports posted on the 20th Precinct’s website. Comparing 2018’s data to 1990’s numbers for major crimes like robbery, rape and felonious assault, the crime rate has fallen over 85%, according to the most recently posted report.

“I don’t want to get anyone’s hopes up for the rest of the year,” Malin said, “but right now the crime decline on the Upper West Side is phenomenal.”

Captain Seth Lynch, 24th Precinct Commanding Officer

Crime rates are similarly falling in the northern portion of the UWS covered by the 24th Precinct, led by Captain Seth Lynch.

According to the latest CompStat report posted on the 24th Precinct’s website, year-to-date major crime has fallen 21.3% versus 2018, and the trend since 1990 is down 81%.

NEWS | 39 comments | permalink
    1. Leon says:

      I greatly appreciate the efforts of NYPD in our neighborhood and these statistics are very encouraging. That being said, I have noticed a significant increase in smaller, quality of life issues – there are many more pan-handlers, more litter, more graffiti, and people just seem to be more on edge – the subways feel like the 1980s where if someone bumps you, it is a capital offense – I thought we had moved on from that.

      • Sean says:

        It’s the Trump Era and he’s a product of the 80s. Stay off the Subway. It’s not a good place to be.

      • Claire says:

        Graffiti is just mold on a wall and panhandlers are down and out folks. These are not issues, quality of life usually sounds like masked classism and racism. The “other” that you would prefer not to see on your way to grab a latte.

        • Biffmeister says:

          Graffiti is not just mold on a wall. It’s defacement of public or private property. And panhandlers are not just “down and out folks”. Most of them are junkies, alcoholics and/or mentally ill and do NOT belong on the streets. Nor do they belong in the subway system. Quality of life issues are extremely important and if we ignore them, then we have learned nothing from the disgusting reign of David Dinkins.

          • Bruce E. Bernstein says:

            Biffmeister said:

            “And panhandlers are not just “down and out folks”. Most of them are junkies, alcoholics and/or mentally ill and do NOT belong on the streets.”

            I’m glad you’re so easily able to tell, from a quick glance, who is a junkie and/or an alcoholic. In fact, at least in the area around 96th and Bway, there are very few panhandlers… an average of one every 4 or 5 blocks on most evenings, or fewer. Some are regulars, and those are neither junkies nor alcoholics, at least not the two i am familiar with. They’re just poor and/or physically disabled.

            Biffmeister said:

            “Quality of life issues are extremely important and if we ignore them, then we have learned nothing from the disgusting reign of David Dinkins.”

            You wouldn’t know from reading this that it was actually Dinkins who reversed the trend on rising crime, and Dinkins who put 25% more cops on the street. Why is Dinkins hated on so much? Usually he’s compared unfavorably with Giuliani. Let’s recall that Dinkins selected Ray Kelly as police chief, while one of Giuliani’s selections was the disgraced Bernard Kerik.

            It’s interesting to note that Dinkins is now a dignified elder statesmen and professor at Columbia; Giuliani is a crazed publicity addict and confused and pathological apologist for Trump. Maybe their “true colors” have come out in their later years?

            Crime actually skyrocketed under Koch, not Dinkins. I wonder why Dinkins always gets associated with higher crime rates, when in fact he turned the situation around? I sure hope it’s not because some people stereotype and dismiss our first, and only, Black mayor. Sadly, i have a feeling that’s a big part of the reason.

            An overview of the Dinkins era:


        • Rob G. says:

          Sorry Claire, but graffiti and panhandlers affect quality of life, as well as encourage an atmosphere where safety is at risk. Your snarky class-baiting comments about lattes have no place here.

          • Bruce E. Bernstein says:

            Rob G, you are attempting to bully Claire and stop her from expressing her opinion. I suppose you think only right-wing opinions like yours “have a place here.” Are you the Commissioner of WSR?

            I personally agree with her and think she made insightful points, and hope she continues to speak out. I doubt she can be intimidated, despite your efforts.

            Rob G. said:

            ” …graffiti and panhandlers affect quality of life, as well as encourage an atmosphere where safety is at risk.”

            You have repeatedly expressed the opinion that “panhandlers have taken over our streets.” At least where i live, in the area around 96th and Broadway, this is a gross exaggeration, in fact, a lie. And the few regular panhandlers that are out there do not put anyone’s “safety at risk”.You are seeing through biased eyes, and your bias is not allowing you to see accurately.

            I walk between 100th or 102nd and 95 on Bway almost every night, back and forth (shopping when i get home from work, usually from 7 to about 10), and multiple times on weekends. Since you have started making these inflammatory claims, i have made a point of counting the panhandlers on my walks. There is usually zero or 1 on the entire stretch; a much smaller number of times there are two. To see 3 is very rare, maybe it has happened once.

            There are very rarely panhandlers on the East side of Bway. On the west side, there is a very peaceful and decidedly not dangerous elderly man, a vet and a very nice person, often in front of the 7/11. FUrther up, there is often a man who is severely physically disabled. Sometimes late at night there is a woman near 93rd.

            Claire’s description of these people as “down and out” is precisely right. To continually rage about how they are destroying your “quality of life” and presumably putting the neighborhood at risk says more about you than it does about them.

            What ever happened to “live and let live”?

      • Bruce E. Bernstein says:

        these claims about the subway ridership being constantly on the edge of violence are pure malarkey. I’m on the subway several hours each day and almost all i see are tired, hard working people who are dealing as best they can with overcrowding and habitual delays. New Yorkers, as always, deal with adversity well.

        Sure, there are too many mariachi bands, especially in the AM on the 1 and the 7. But i’ve yet to see anyone get hit over the head with an accordion.

    2. W. 80th St. Block Association says:

      The 20th precinct is the best present of all New York City five boroughs !
      I would not say that back in the late 60s and 70s/80s but they’re showing their colors now though…very proud of them and I am very proud how they treat our local residence and our tourist. I have used them many times and they have made me very proud of the neighborhood I live in.
      Kudos to the 20th precinct from the West 80th Street Block Association / Billy Amato Chair-person

    3. chuck d says:

      My wife was blatantly sexually assaulted in a hardware store last year. It was caught on video at the store. She took the video to the 24th precinct. They failed to see a crime.

      My daughter’s phone was stolen. We tracked it via “find my iPhone” upstate. I went to the 24th to get a police report for the insurance 3 times. The cops said it wasn’t stolen, it was lost.

      The reason the crime stats are down is because they just never see a crime as a crime.

      • Not impressed says:

        Indeed, I’ve gone into the precinct several times to report crimes and have always been treated like gutter trash.

        One time a guy hit my car and drove off, leaving $1200 in damage. I got the guy on video and knew who it was. The cop told me he wasn’t interested. “Your insurance will take care of it” he said. Yes, after I pay my $1000 deductible it will. There are plenty of crimes they just brush off as not worth their time. Keeps the compstat numbers down I suppose, but doesn’t instill confidence in their policing or professionalism.

        • JJ87 says:

          Couldn’t agree more! Had an attempted burglary in my building a few weeks ago (haven’t heard back from detectives). Was involved in a hit & run, the police never bothered to apprehend the runners even after I provided them with a plate number. I call BS on the decrease in crime.

          • Jen says:

            Same experience. Tried to report a crime twice last year, and was treated so badly that I literally cried at the precinct. Do not believe these numbers. I have lived on UWS since 1999 and felt much safer during my first decade here. My friends had the same experience reporting the crime. The crime is increasing and the audacity to report that it significantly decreased is appalling.

      • LB says:

        I was accosted by 2 men in the street last December. One said he had a gun and asked me for money. I quickly walked away and prayed I wasn’t going to get shot in the back or beaten.
        When my husband and then I called the precinct they said they couldn’t do anything about it. “Probably panhandlers” they said and no crime was committed. No one even bothered to take down a description of the two men. My husband told them if someone does get shot or hurt tonight the blood is on your ( the police person’s) hand.

      • Elisheva says:

        Same thing happened to me. I was stopped by a group of rowdy boys on the 96 street stairs and jostled. I know I had my wallet before getting on the train because I had bought my son an ice cream outside the station and remember putting it back in my bag. When I got to top of stairs in the subway, my wallet was gone. I went right to the police station and they said it’s “lost” not stolen. Now I’m reading this uptick of thefts at the 96th Street stop. Of course it was stolen. They just didn’t want to record it as a crime. Total bologna. My son was with me in the station and shocked they dismissed it.

      • Christine E says:

        Friend’s wallet stolen last year, in 24th. We went to the 20th to report since that was closest. 20th said we had to go to 19th to officially report it, since that was where the victim lived. Huh? I looked up the law and guess what, any station is required to take the report, regardless of location. Know your rights, people.

    4. UWSmom says:

      Kudos if legit. But, several years ago I reported a crime at the 20th precinct, and the recording officer checked a box indicating I was unwilling to prosecute, without asking me, when I certainly wanted to prosecute. And, I have been “talked out of” several crimes by police from 24th who clearly did not want to bother with paperwork. The crime stats only reflect what is actually recorded as crimes. There is more happening than is counted.

    5. UWS_40yrs says:

      It’s all de Blasio’s fault!!


    6. Ben David says:

      First, thanks to the wonderful NYPD for all that they do (and all that they would do if they weren’t terrified of being called racists).
      As several have noted, especially in the 24 Precinct, quality of life issues are NOT being addressed. The Captains want to keep their bosses happy and are turning the other way, even on real crimes such as muggings, shop lifting, harassment in the streets of the 2-4. Captain Seth Lynch: try walking around the West 90s and 100s without your weapon; it’s not a safe feeling!

    7. UWSHebrew says:

      After reading the comments on here of people who describe reporting crimes and this precinct ignores them, it really disturbs me. Is this true? Are these readers exaggerating? Maybe WSR should interview these people and others who have tales to tell?

    8. H says:

      At the end of the day it’s a numbers game. There is nothing new about the manipulation of crime statistics. What’s better than downgrading a crime? Never report it or be discouraged from reporting it. Crimes not reported and/or not categorized appropriately presents a picture that a crime did not happen or the reporting doesn’t represent an accurate accounting of what took place.The following adage holds true – figures can lie and liars can figure.

      • Jay says:

        Juking the stats isn’t just for Mayor Carcetti. It’s a time honored tradition for low self-esteem mayors.

    9. Spence says:

      I don’t believe police stats. Never have.

    10. andrea says:

      I Think all these accounts bellow are very impressive and should be taken to Citycouncil to open an inquiry. If the Police is behaving so badly – and there are many reports about it – it’s imperative to stop officials lying and misleading the public.

    11. kcares says:

      Seeing our officers out and interacting with our community members on a regular basis, getting to know us and us them, helps us all around. The Community policing model is very effective on the UWS and now the numbers back that up.

    12. Kathy says:

      Thank you, wonderful officers of the NYPD! You are the best!

    13. Stef Lev says:

      I guess they don’t count all the notifications that come through the Citizen app. What do they not count, that’s the question?!

    14. JFS says:

      If you don’t get the action you seek, make an appointment to speak with Captain Lynch. Once the recording officer sees you’re serious, he just might take a friendlier approach.

      • H says:

        Perhaps but the reality is higher ups in the NYPD need to appease the rank and file. Officers have various ways “blue flu” or slowing up of ticket writing to illustrate the power in numbers will win out and it does not bode well for a higher ranking officer to be too harsh on officers. While I respect the position of police officers and appreciate the thankless jobs they do, it takes a certain inate quality and work ethic of which many an officer lacks. Many join the NYPD because they took one of a handful of civil service exams they could qualify for and it was the first one to call them based on their list standing. Had their list # been called for the MTA or FDNY, they’d be a bus driver, conductor, or fire fighter. We often conflate the position with the individuals whom hold those positions.

    15. Dave O. says:

      How many cases were solved? How many arrests were made? How many of the crimes have they actually solved? How many crimes are still open?

      Crimes stats alone are not an indication of police effectiveness.

      When the unemployment rate is low like now, the police take credit for low crime rate, but when it is high they blame it for the high crime rate.

      They need to show the residents data that indicate that they are actually having an effect in the crime rate. If the arrest & conviction rate is low, then how can they claim any effect?

      • H says:

        Sadly even data will show what they want to show. The city will use numbers convenient for their argument and talk away or ignore those numbers that do not fit their agenda. Optics means more than solving issues.

    16. madison says:

      It’s clear from the comments that no one is really buying this. Beyond the numbers game, crime is always way down in the winter – and even knowing that most of us feel less safe in our neighborhood that we have in years prior.

      you don’t need comp stat #s to look around, talk to your neighbors, and know that crime is up. It may not be the crime that puts you in the morgue but the more small crime is ignored, the bigger it will get. And this isn’t the fault of the officers, these policies start at the top. I will never understand the recent unwillingness of nyc residents to step outside party lines on the mayoral vote. look around the country and tell me where a mayor as far left as de blasio is making life better for the middle class? safer for city kids? easier for families to pay rent? this city has gone down this path before, can we not do it again?

    17. Bruce E. Bernstein says:

      First of all, “props” to DI Malin and CAPT Lynch. Unlike many of these commenters above, I believe the statistics. It would be virtually impossible to “fake” or falsify the statistics on a grand level. I work for the city and i know how accurate we have to be, and how stupid it is to monkey with statistics.

      both Malin and Lynch can be proud of their work.

      In regard to the negative comments: I have come to the conclusion that the right wing Republican / Giuliani / Trump supporters don’t really care about getting rid of crime, otherwise they would be praising Lynch and particularly Malin. I think they care about USING crime as a political issue to beat liberals and progressives over the head with. When De Blasio got rid of racial profiling, they hated on him so much…and they boldly predicted that NYC would turn into a violent Mad MAx style dystopia. Well, the racist “stop and frisk” that we saw under Bloomberg went away and was replaced with Community Policing… and the numbers continued to go down. So now they say, “the numbers are fake.” Like i said, they don’t care about crime… they care about politically targeting De Blasio, and i also think many of them care about targeting the Black and Hispanic communities.

      I am not saying this is true for ALL of the commenters above, but certainly it is for some of them, particularly the more rabid ones.

      I doubt there is a precinct commander in NYC more dedicated to the theory and practice of Community Policing than DI Malin. I don’t think you can definitively establish causation between these superb YTD numbers and his methods. But his methods sure didn’t hurt.

      I hope Malin and Lynch ignore the haters and continue doing what they are doing.

      • kindly dr dave says:


      • Scott says:

        It figures you’d come along and defend DeBlasio. You impugn the motives of people who have had terrible experiences with cops, which is disgusting. But you’re the forum mind reader, so you know everyone’s political persuasions don’t you. God forbid you need the cops for anything — maybe your bootlicking comments will ensure you get white glove treatment, but I wouldn’t count on it.

      • Me3 says:

        Are you hallucinating again sir? Do you really think that Rudy Giuliani was elected mayor because the people of this city wanted an increased crime rate? Just because he’s lost his marbles now doesn’t diminish his past accomplishments as mayor. Politics aside and facts in front, this town never would have achieved it’s greatness, which continued under Bloomberg, and benefited by de Blasio, without him.