By Bob Tannenhauser
The NYPD released the citywide crime statistics for the month of July 2022 with a comparison to July 2021. The charts below present the data for the city as a whole and the reported incidents for the 20th and 24th precincts, which serve the Upper West Side, for the 28-day period ending July 24th versus the same period last year. The city has seen an increase in murder and shooting incidents and the overall crime index has increased 30.5%. The 20th and 24th precincts have also experienced an increase in crime incidents of 55.41% and 31.43% respectively.
NEW YORK CITY
|Grand Larceny Auto||1,142||+25.9%|
|Grand Larceny Auto||11||-8.3%|
|Grand Larceny Auto||13||+30%|
Sure sounds, looks & feels like the 1970’s – 1980’s.
UWS was way way worse in 1980-1990’s . I and everyone I knew was mugged almost weekly. Side streets were no-go zones.. Forget about Central Park after sundown. Young UWS white boys were literally hunted by crews from above 96th .
Not even close.
No it doesn’t. Not even close.
So say you…others may feel differently. Also, society has advanced in the past 50 years, so the bar (has rightfully) been raised.
No, it really does not. “The murder rate today looks much like it did in 2009, when the city was clawing its way back from the last national economic collapse. Pull back further to New York of the 1980s and early 1990s, and the murder rate was five times higher than today with an average of six killings a day.” https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2022-is-nyc-safe-crime-stat-reality/?sref=gWC4MtDq
I *LOVE* the West Side Rag but I do think they are a contributor to the problems identified in that Bloomberg article. Media coverage of crime that fails to put numbers in context leads to misinformed citizens and voters. People should come away from a WSR article more informed about their neighborhood, not less. When an average commenter reads an article and thinks the crime rate is 5x what is actually is, that feels like a failure.
Midtown was much safer in 2009 than now.
Those historic stats are easy to find too, NYPD publishes them every week. Robbery down 86.2 percent since 1990. Assault down 48.2 percent:
So not the 70s and 80s. Not saying it is fun to be mugged, or that any of this crime is excusable or easy to respond to. But really, that was a very different, much more crime-ridden and street-dangerous time, for kids and adults, in many neighborhoods and parks, East Village, to Union Square, to UWS, Morningside, Midtown West. Very different
Primaries for the state senate are coming up. These are the people who can actually do something about this. I would appreciate WSR profiling the candidates – I think the choice is pretty clear.
Instead of just complaining on message boards, get out and vote to try to bring about change and make our city safer.
And contrary to the opinions of some, the plans to make the city safer are not radical, or violations of rights, or anything else of the sort – they are common sense. The people advocating for them are also Democrats, not Trumpers.
AMEN!! You said it all. Vote and see who has been talking about our safety and our quality of life for over a year. It’s so important it can’t be understated. The state senate can make the difference, depending on who you vote for. 8/23 is a big day.
Unfortunately, actually very unfortunately, a low percentage of registered voters will bother to vote in the primaries, or, for that matter, in the November election.
And, of those who vote, the votes will mostly continue to go to incumbents, who have showed little real interest in changing things e.g. bail reform.
Also unfortunately, until one of these legislators experiences a robbery, assault etc. against them, or one of their family or friends, they will continue to ignore the problems. Just look at the people we elected to the Assembly and the Senate, and the New York City Council,
and what their views have been about really attacking the problem of crime. I dislike having to say it, but the phrase that comes to mind is “soft on crime.”
This can be reversed by getting rid of Bragg, bail reforms, social justice reforms, soft on crime policies and refunding police, adding cameras, and broken windows policies.
There is no doubt that crime has increased recently and more steps should be taken to address it. But to blame the increase on Bragg, who took office after crime began to increase, or bail reform, about which all studies so far say is not causing the increase, or defunding the police, which hasn’t happened, is to use hackneyed right wing talking points that fail to address reality. Crime is up all over the US, including in places run by right wingers, so let’s drop the ideology and instead try to think seriously about causes and solutions.
Bail reform is a mess and of course is the reason crime is rampant. Instead of speeding up the criminal justice system, cash bail was eliminated. So, it’s a revolving door of “no justice.” Criminals are suffering NO consequences for their actions, so they repeat them over and over and over again. That, coupled with Bragg downgrading crimes, and the City Council’s mandate of the past decade to back off quality of life crimes (such as jumping the turnstiles) has not only made crime skyrocket, but is bankrupting the MTA. I spent 16 years busting my butt for the 20 Precinct Community Council pushing quality of life enforcement, and the City Council trashed all of it. We MUST repeal bail reform, crack down on quality of life crime, raise police salaries for recruiting because they are retiring in record numbers, prosecute for everything, and all of it. I am sick of a handful of “activists” holding the City hostage to their catering to criminals. It’s about time we put victims first.
Yes. Put victims first!
How can you say that the bail reform has nothing to do with it? When the DA’s office lessens crimes to misdemeanors constantly and with people caught with guns let out with no bail – you don’t think that leads to more crime? If crimes are lessened, the numbers aren’t true so don’t look at these “studies”, look outside your window.
Your kinds of comments are the problem, we are in New York City, I don’t care about anyone talking about crime going up someplace else, New York City is a very special place, and I don’t care what you think, I know for a fact that it needs very serious law-enforcement, due to the millions of people and all of our unique situations. Everything is eroding, there is no question about that… And we have been here before, people being assaulted on the subway for no reason, Women being dragged into the parks and raped. We know how bad it can get. And it feels exponentially worse now because we know the police are not doing anything. Yes, it is alarming to see these criminals around the country helping themselves to all kinds of merchandise, just throwing it in big bags and leaving without any fear of consequence, and we have surveillance for it, we see that nothing is being done. They just do it in broad daylight and get away. And that’s truly unfortunate, and we must not allowed out here. Not once, and sadly some places have literally been robbed twice like the LensCrafters. We cannot live in a world where we start justifying it, saying that the merchandise was insured it’s OK, no it’s not OK at all, we can never send that message that it is OK. Maybe I’m just too moderate for a Democrat, but people need to be going to jail, that’s the answer… If this was a game show, that would be the number one answer. If it was Jeopardy, and I had to phrase it as a question, I would say “what is prison!” I think you get the picture now
Why do you address crime in terms of “crime is up all over the United States.” Who cares what is happening in the rest of the U.S. We care about the West Side where we live. As Tip O’Neill said, “all politics is local” and by that he meant “fix the potholes.”
As Joe said, get rid of bail reforms and soft on crime” policies.
We should all care about crime happening in other parts of the US and how NYC compares – not in order to dismiss anything happening in NYC but in hopes of better isolating and identifying causes and potential solutions. If other major cities are seeing similar rises in crime and haven’t undertaken bail reform, or have liberal DAs, etc, than we should be looking elsewhere for the potential drivers that are common across jurisdictions and try to find ways we might be able to address those factors at a local, NYC-centric level.
Looking at NYC crime in complete isolation from what is being experienced in many other US regions (and many places abroad I should say) is almost certain to end up in bad conclusions about what is driving crime and in turn what policies (local, state, and or national) could best address them. We saw this in reverse when many credited the “broken windows” policies with the decline in NYC crime during Giuliani – despite crime being down just as much if not more in cities across the country that didn’t have similar policies.
I think there are still clearly some pandemic related impacts that we don’t quite understand. I think there might also be something in the new generation of synthetic drugs that are affecting behavior in very different ways than in the past. Let’s also not forget things like the increased reliance on delivery and spike in Amazon thefts. None of these are scientific, but they at least would help to explain nationwide (and even foreign) spikes in crime in a way that local issues like bail reform or current DA don’t.
But, is Bragg really doing anything to decrease crime?
I’ve been walking my dog through all corners of the Upper West Side, Central Park, and Harlem for the last 3.5 years at all hours of the day. Honestly, it isn’t that bad. The statistics don’t show that people are at higher risk if they know the perpetrator or if they are out late at night and not aware of their surroundings. The sad irony is the more the media, including this article, inflate the risk of crime, the fewer people are out on the street. This increases the vulnerability of people who are not falling for the media’s skewed crime narrative designed more to sell papers and ads than to inform the public.
A man with a dog? I think criminals are looking for much easier target that they find without any effort. Older men and women of all ages have been punched and robbed in broad daylight.
Yes, as I’m now entering my senior years, I feel like I have a target on my back. I’ll be leaving the city this winter.
I’m very sorry to hear that. This is not acceptable for our city and community when our seniors have to leave because of safety issues.
THIS is a real crime rate indicator in our city –
– Not someone comparing it to the all the worst part of the country (why not El Salvador, we are doing very well then)
– Not perception of a man walking his dog
– Not the ones trying to figure out percentage of population affected by crime (while statistics are shady as they are)
-Especially not the ones saying it is not as bad as in the 70s. It was better for many years since 70s until now, so get over it.
Our city residents do not feel safe particularly seniors.
We have to do something about it instead of splitting hairs on unreliable statistics or comparing it to lowest benchmarks.
I would argue the better key performance indicator is incidents per 1,000 or 10,000 people. That would adjust for differences in population over time and between locales, and also give a sense of probability. Not saying we should t care about each case.
Your article says “The city has seen an increase in murder and shooting incidents” but the stats show murder is down 31.6 percent, unless I’m missing something?
Obviously trends getting worse is a cause for concern, but as some commenters noted, this stats are similar to those from 2009 under Bloomberg, when everyone considered NYC the safest big city around. The level of panic from politicians and some residents now is wildly out of proportion to what’s actually happening.
Shoplifting is not down, because we decided to no longer prosecute (in essence) for that crime. Pretty soon we’ll have no drugstores. This affects the average UWSer a lot more than the murder rate.
There is no denying that crime is changing the city and the neighborhood. It’s not safe. Don’t fool yourself thinking it’s not bad. It is.
Can I just point out that unemployment is at pre pandemic levels of 3.5%? Historically crime has gone up when people can’t work and steal to feed their families. These people CAN work and are choosing not to. They know they won’t get arrested and if they do, they will be released. UWSers can complain all they want. But unless NYC has a real Republican mayor and NYS has a real Republican Governor (by “real Republican” I mean a non MAGA person) crime will never go away.
Talk about fake news. Crime skyrocketed under DiBlasio and stayed high after Adams took over.
Crime was much much higher under our Republican mayors and governors than it is now.
Really? I moved to the city when Dinkins was the mayor. It was horrible. Giuliani (whom I not a fan of now) cleaned it up overnight. It became very safe.
Not anymore after DeBlasio took the office.
I despise Giuliani
now but he did rid the streets of criminals. Bragg doesn’t want to prosecute anything but the most heinous crimes. The city feels very lawless now.
Shoplifting is rampant and there seem to be no consequences for those who engage in crime.
Everyone just gets a slap on the wrist. I’m very sad to say it, but I feel significantly less safe in NYC than I did 10 or even 5 years ago.
Eight years of Giuliani got us a crime rate ~80% higher than the one we have today. We had a Republican governor back then too. Republican style “tough on crime” makes a lot of people feel good but it doesn’t get results. Democrats have spent decades building a safety net of food stamps and school lunch programs so that nobody needs to steal to keep their family from starving. That’s what actually leads to lower crime rates.
Sure, people steal now to feed their children. With Prada bags wearing $800 hoodies?
What about under Bloomberg though…?
The link in the article is broken, it’s pointing to someone’s email 😁
By the numbers: In 1990, there were 2,246 murders across the five boroughs, a historic high. Yet by the end of 1996, there were fewer than 1,000 homicides recorded, a decline of almost 55%.
Likewise in 1990, there were nearly 6,000 shooting victims, a number that was cut in half by 1996. At the end of 2018, the total number of homicides in the city was below 300 for a second year in a row, and the total number of major crimes was the lowest ever recorded at 95,883.
There is no reason to be comparing to the 80s or 70s, the fact that that’s happening, is already seriously problematic. But we can all safely admit that all the gains made since dinkins are being erased. There are extremely serious violent crimes taking place, moreover, they are going unanswered! Rudolph Giuliani is my least favorite person today, but back then, I was there, he did the work to clean up the city, and Mayor Bloomberg subsequently brought the city to all kinds of new heights. This is no longer eroding, it’s rotten to the core now. De Blasio and the current mayor are ill equipped. We need to just say it for what it is, it’s time to take back control now. The reason I say take back, is because order was restored, and now it’s gone again. Two bad Mayors, erased the progress of two good mayors. The governor is no good either. We need to face facts, that these liberal policies are failures. I was in San Francisco about two months ago, go take a look at the future if we don’t turn around now. Because their mayor and governor are proof of these bad ideas, but we aren’t as stupid as them, we need to turn around now! It’s the tipping point and we need to tip it in the other direction now
Perfectly said Winsy!
Gee, maybe it’s partly because cops aren’t doing their jobs? They stare at cellphones instead of what is going on around them Frankly I think personal cellphones should NOT be permitted while police are on duty. Hello???
You are the problem. Anti cop rhetoric is not helpful. Maybe you should try it. Go and sign up. You can do it.
You have NO idea what they are looking at on their phones. NO IDEA. Cops do their jobs. They communicate via phone. Are you a soothsayer or a mind reader? How could you possibly know what they are looking at? Every perp is hunted down and arrested. But it’s a catch and release problem. The perps are back on the street the next day.
I know because I LOOK. I look over the shoulders and sideways to see what is entrancing an individual cop’s attention. I am not Helen Keller. See for yourself before judging accurate observations of ordinary citizens. I am NOT alone in this.
At least looking at the clearance rates posted on the NYPD website shows total crime clearance in Manhattan falling from 33.5% in 4Q’17 to 28.8% in Q1’22. Neither figure seems great!
Blaming the police??? The police are not allowed to do their jobs. They are put out on the streets to deal with the criminal element with their hands tied behind their backs. And when they do arrest a criminal, they are back out in the street immediately.
Is it possible that they are doing something work-related on their phones?
I thought we were supposed to be working on reducing crime. We need to saturate the city with cops and more cops, undercover cops and basically police booths on every corner. Eliminate no bail arrests. This is what the mayor ran on and I am thankful he is addressing this.
When will the good people of the Upper West Side realize that a liberal mindset towards policing and justice doesn’t get them the safety they’d like? The neighborhood deserves every single one of these stats.
I’ve lived in NYC for 63 years and this is EXACTLY like the 70s — except being a senior citizen now, it’s a lot scarier than it was back then!
Sounds like a change in your perception of danger vs the reality…. Media has figured out scaring folks sells more clicks
I’ve lived on the UWS for 40 years having lived on seven continents throughout my life. Always very social and active..
Life on the UWS was just fine in the 80’s and 90’s.. But.. you never went into the park after dark!.
I nor any of my friends were threatened or attacked in the 80’s/90’s. I’d take the A train to
‘St Nicks Pub’ on W 149th st for spectacular jazz late at night. Only time I was robbed was on a bus by two girls.. One distracted me while the other went through my bag and stole my wallet! I have never been physically attacked. (Fingers crossed !)
Recently after dropping stuff off at a church on W. 95th st. I was screamed at on the subway station by a nutter who didn’t like it that I got to sit down first on the bench!
Keep the negative ‘news’ out of your psyche folks and enjoy your lives.. it ain’t as bad as they say!
My feelings exactly after living here in NYC for almost 50 years on the Upper West Side. I wasn’t afraid in the 70’s. I am now.
I have lived on the lower east side
My whole life. We then had cops
Who did what they were supposed
To do arrest these p
And teach them a lesson
Am I missing something here, this is saying murder is way down.
And these are the alleged reported incidents. Can you imagine what really is going on? A homeless man deliberately pushed “his” Citibike into me as he disembarked so it fell on me. This in addition to the Mopeds and e-vehicles that regularly try to run me down. No point reporting is there? No cops around.
Sorry that happened to you.
If you reported it, the cops would probably say they didn’t see it happen.
At least in the 1970s, we agreed that crime was a bad thing and that criminals needed to be off the street; now, we feel sorrier for criminals than for their victims, and we do not jail them or, if we do, we let them out fast.
Also in those days criminals themselves were different: They wanted your money, they didn’t sucker-punch you just for fun, push you into train tracks, or shoot you. I understand muggings. I don’t understand sheer, wanton aggression.
Criminals now know they can get away with a lot. That’s the major difference.
Removing Bragg and his enablers is the only answer.
But you all elected these people.
What is wrong with people. We as civilized people should be demanding Zero murders, rapes and crimes against children. Anything less makes you one of these offenders.
It’s a shame, obviously, that COVID did as much damage as it did to our City, but that doesn’t make it any less remarkable, beautiful, and SAFE for a LARGE City. It’s very easy to focus on these (scary) numbers because we are spoiled Upper West Siders, but it doesn’t mean we should lose our perspective. In the 1970s and 1980s, Central Park was wasted; the subways had graffiti all over them; Times Square was a XXX-haven. Yes, we are going through a modern day crisis, but let’s try to remember how truly blessed we are.