Kelly Notes Citywide Crime Drop At 114th Pct. Breakfast
“The number of murders [is] down 20 percent so far this year,” Kelly said at the 114th Precinct Fellowship Breakfast, held at Riccardo’s by the Bridge on May 30. “In a city of 8.4 million, we’re averaging under one murder a day. This is phenomenal.”
There have been 141 murders recorded in the city, year to date, compared to 176 for the same period last year, a drop of 19.9 percent, according to the most recent NYPD CompStat report through the week ending May 20. There were 515 homicides recorded in 2011.
“It is a tremendous testament to the work of the men and women of the NYPD and a validation of the policies and strategies we have in place,” Kelly said, also giving credit to the participation and partnership of the community. “We need this (collaboration) and we want to know what is going on. We can devise strategies and policies, but there’s no substitute for partnership.”
Kelly thanked 114th Precinct Commanding Officer Deputy Inspector Stephen Cirabisi and all the men and women of the 114th. “I particularly want to thank P.O. Phillip Leroy,” he said. “As a member of the Anti-Crime Unit, P.O. Leroy has made more than two dozen arrests so far this year for things like robbery and gun possession.”
Over the last decade, the ranks of the NYPD have declined by 6,000 police officers. To deal with the decline in personnel, “We have to be creative,” Kelly said. He thanked Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. for his support as chairman of the council Public Safety Committee and noted that crime in New York City is down more than 40 percent over those 10 years.
“It is my honor to be here with you,” Vallone responded. “Every day I try to say a prayer, not only for all the men and women of the NYPD but for [Commissioner Kelly] as well. The right way is the NYPD way. They have the fortitude and sense of self to make us the safest city in the world [and] I want to thank all of NYPD and especially the top brass for keeping us safe.”
In the span of a month last November, Cirabisi said, Leroy made four arrests and recovered two firearms. Since joining the ranks of the NYPD in January 2009, he has 188 arrests. “P.O. Leroy exemplifies the NYPD way,” Vallone said .
In a reference to recent media criticism of NYPD practices and strategies (the Associated Press reported the NYPD used surveillance on Muslim Americans), Vallone praised the absence of terrorist attacks in the years after Sept. 11, 2001 in the city and the NYPD’s success in foiling a reported 14 attempted attacks since. Kelly created the first counter terrorism bureau of any municipal police department in the U.S. after the terrorist attacks.
Vallone also announced that 24 citizens have completed training as block watchers for the Astoria Neighborhood Watch he initiated (six are members of the 114th Precinct Civilian Observation Patrol). “We’ll get some patrols out on the street. We need civilian eyes more and more and that’s what the block watchers are all about,” he said.
Patrol Borough Queens North Commanding Officer Assistant Chief Diana Pizzuti pointed to the “great community support” in the precinct. “It’s going to be a great asset,” Cirabisi said.