By Daniel Katzive
Crime has moderated in the 20th Precinct in February after a tough start to the year. Deputy Inspector Neil Zuber delivered the welcome news at the precinct’s monthly Community Council meeting on Thursday night.
The early weeks of 2023 saw a murder in the 2-0, the first in over a year, and a rash of commercial burglaries along Columbus Avenue. Since then, things have been quieter.
Zuber credited the precinct’s strategy of aggressively deploying patrol officers along commercial corridors for helping to stem the burglary spree. He also singled out one of the precint’s Neighborhood Coordination Officers, Police Officer Edward Groger, whose investigative work using video footage led to the identification of a suspect in the break-ins, work for which Groger was recognized as Patrol Borough Manhattan North’s “Cop-of-the-Month” according to Zuber.
One exception to the better trend is auto theft. Thefts of cars are up across the city this year, and this was also highlighted at last week’s 24th Precinct Community Council meeting, just to the north of the 2-0. In the 28 days ending Sunday, the 20th Precinct has recorded 12 auto thefts, up from just three in this period last year, according to NYPD Compstat data. Citywide auto thefts are up 8% during this period over last year’s pace.
Deputy Inspector Zuber said that, in the 2-0, thieves appear to be targeting Hondas, and the CRV model in particular. The thieves are believed to be using a technical device which allows them to mimic the key fobs of Hondas, entering the cars and driving away without physical damage to the cars. This makes the thefts difficult to prevent and difficult to detect in progress.
Zuber suggested owners of these cars who park on the street consider using one of the steering wheel immobilization devices that were popular in the 1990s, at least until the auto manufacturers have updated their software to address this vulnerability. “When they go high tech, we go low tech,” he said.
Zuber also noted that neighborhood residents may see a heightened presence of officers from the precinct and the NYPD’s Counter Terrorism Bureau in front of Jewish houses of worship this weekend. This is in response to antisemitic social-media chatter about possible threats, as reported by NBC News this morning. Zuber and the NYPD have emphasized that this is precautionary and that there is no specific credible threat to New York City.
The next meeting of the 20th Precinct Community Council will be held on Thursday, March 23rd, at 7pm in the precinct station house on West 82nd Street. The public is welcome.
Finally some somewhat-good news.
And we did it without a Republican mayor!
Can’t be, I was assured only Zeldin could stop crime
Maybe if we had a Republican mayor it wouldn’t have been up in the first place.
Really WE? We did what? And what in the name of god is IT? Because if you think the West side is winning on crime you are not paying attention.
So, just to make sure I’m understanding you correctly, you are happy because murders, felony assaults, burglary, grand larceny, and GLA are up, but rape and robbery are down?!?
Of the seven (7) categories, 5 are up and 2 are down?!? Are you are claiming some form of political victory?!?
Not at all. But I am not narrow-minded enough to think that a Republican mayor would have made a difference. Crime is up all over the US, and in plenty of cities and suburbs under the control of the GOP.
Does anyone feel safer now, than they did 4 years ago?
Things feel the same for me as they did when I first moved to the neighborhood ten years ago.
No, me neither.
But knowing that human beings as a species, we (99% who survived), all collectively “felt” a jolt (at the minimum, isolation) from the pandemic these 3 years. That’s in addition to the “normalized” loss of life due to heart disease, cancer, aging, guns/vehicular violence, mental illness, etc.
To many people who are emotionally disconnected, Fear /and Anger are indistinguishable.
Workers at a brownstone has ALL of their tools stolen in the 24. Catalytic converter thefts continue. Retail stores robbed. It’s not getting better.
This article is inaccurate. Major crimes are up.
Who are we to believe?? The crime stats + your own eyes on pleasant walks around the UWS? Or the vibes that crime must be getting worse bc the NYPost says so?
Yeah … walking by the homeless encampment on 104th and Broadway … or the string of smoke shops by 109th and 108th … it’s all so pleasant.
The article is correct, there was a decrease in February, the graph represents year to date.
how is an increase in five out of seven a decrease? did anyone ask?
The chart is year to date, the decrease was for February
I also read that car thieves are also doing the same fob trick with Hyundai models as well. It’s been going on for awhile. They recommend that you take your cars to the dealership to fix this problem or simply get one of those old metal bars on the steering wheel, so they can’t move the car, which the car dealer can provide for free.
If you want to look at real numbers, check this out:
It’s the last 23 years of the 7 Major Felony Offenses in NYC. While 2022 saw an increase vs. 2021 in every category except Murder, 2000 was the worst year in most categories. Comparing 2022 to 2000: Murder 65% (2022 vs. 2000); Rape 78%; Robbery 53%; Burglary 41%; Grand Larceny of Motor Vehicle 39%. Only Felony Assault and Grand Larceny were marginally higher than in 2000., and both categories never dipped significantly over the 23 years.
This is not to dismiss the significance of the current statistics, only to point out that these crimes are dramatically lower than in 2000 (the next-to-last year of that illustrious crime-fighting Republican mayor and man of inestimable integrity, Rudolph W, Giuliani. And total crimes declined from 2014-2021, which was under DeBlasio’s mayoralty). Things were far, far worse in the early 2000’s and before. Again, that’s not to say that concern about what’s happening today isn’t warranted, but I don’t see this as a “sky is falling” situation. Personally, I am not afraid to be out at night, and frequently ride the subways very late. I’ve never had an incident, and am sure there are countless others who feel the same way.
1) People have stopped believing the data. We have experienced (and written about) being discouraged by police about filing reports, etc.
2) The ‘quality of life’ measure isn’t a part of this. Your data don’t capture the run traffic lights, the hit and runs, the pot smoke, the unmuffled motorcycles, the loud car stereos, the homeless, the smoke shops, the reduced store hours, the vacant storefronts, the worse subway service, the endless scaffolding and sheds.
3) It’s hard to talk to someone so partisan that they say ‘yeah, well things were worse 23 years ago’. Lots of things were worse in the past. Not super progressive?
1) Things were worse 23 years ago. 2) Who is to blame for the way things are today? 3) I don’t ever expect NYC to not have quality of life issues, and I’m not naive enough to think that electing different people is going to make a big difference in most of them. 4) Whom should we elect to reduce the homeless problem?. 5) I think subway service is fine and a bargain.
“Whom should we elect to reduce the homeless problem?” Whichever candidate promises to build more homes. We have a housing crisis and the obvious solution to a housing shortage is to build more homes. People will try to make it more complicated than it is by saying that what we really need is “affordable” homes and we can’t build that because of developer greed (did the developers use to be benevolent saints?) but the truth is very straightforward – people are homeless because housing is expensive and housing is expensive because the city has made it illegal to build on most of the lots in our neighborhood.
Ed, I looked at your numbers and the problem is, they seem to be based on the entire NY metro area (all 5 boroughs) without any breakdown by precinct or neighborhood. The issue is not overall crime; it is that crime has come to neighborhoods that were previously safe.
What does “safe” mean objectively?
As they say there are “lies, damn lies, and statistics”
I’m horrified that there has not been a national outcry against the Day of Hate planned by white supremicists against Jews. Not that is horrifying. Worse than painting red on cars. I always wondered why the Jews didn’t do anything in the 1930[s and why no-one did anything. And we can see this system repeating itself. Yes, I went to shul. And yes, the UWS was lovely. And yes, there was extra security. But really? I didn’t hear a peep from our politicians or CBO’s at tis horrific hatred against Jews!!! Or any group for that matter.
After a long trip from upstate, i stopped near the grant memorial to take a break and of course look at my phone. As it was 5am and well past bedtime i closed my eyes and allowed myzelf to doze a bit. I was awakened a few minutes later by a jostling of the car. And instant later i heard the loud “BRAP BRAP” of what is known to anyone who has ever had there tires changed as the sound of and “impact wrench”; which is the tool used by mechanics to remove the lugnuts on the wheel. Stunned by this and so near was the noi se i sprang from the car to see a guy dressed all in black wearing a balaclava and crouched at the front passenger side attempting to remove my front wheel. I cursed at hm and he flashed a gun and instantly jumped into a waiting silver camry with lights out and sped off.