2017-05-31 / Features

Anti-Crime Cops Honored At 114th Precinct Meeting


Two Anti-Crime officers were the recipients of Aprils Cop-of-the-Month honors, awarded at the May 23 meeting of the 114th Precinct Community Council held at Riccardo’s by the Bridge in Astoria.

Police Officers Patrick O’Brien and Craig Zaleski were recognized for arrests on April 15 and April 23, respectively, that were detailed by Deputy Inspector Peter Fortune, Commanding Officer of the 114th Precinct.

On April 23, Inspector Fortune said O’Brien and other members of his Anti-Crime patrol were working in plainclothes and recognized a well-known burglary suspect. They decided to conduct surveillance of him at a safe distance.

“At about 6:30 p.m. (the suspect) broke into a construction site at 31st Street and 38th Avenue, and was observed leaving the site with stolen tools,” said Inspector Fortune.

The suspect was arrested and found to have 31 prior arrests, including several for burglary. He was also involved in a grand larceny auto pattern in the precinct.

Thanking Precinct Community Council President Ann Bruno, Inspector Fortune, and Special Operations Lieutenant Nick Morales, Officer O’Brien said, “This is obviously a huge team effort – everybody played a major part.”

Zaleski was also working an Anti-Crime Unit detail that began late night on April 23. At about 2:30 a.m., the team observed a gray sedan with four passengers at 21st Street and 41st Avenue riding with a defective brake light.

Effecting a traffic stop, Zaleski noted open containers of alcohol and the smell of marijuana smoke. The car was stopped and three of the passengers got out and ran into the Queensbridge Houses.

Continuing to search, a loaded .44 caliber was recovered from inside the vehicle and three of the four suspects were identified as known gang members.

After also thanking President Bruno, Inspector Fortune, and Lt. Morales, Zaleski said, “I want to thank my (Anti-Crime) team for making sure everybody goes home safe at the end of the night.”

The first of a new series of quarterly NCO (Neighborhood Coordination Officer) Safety Summits was held on May 22 for Sector C (CHARLEY) at the Variety Boys and Girls Club in Astoria.

The Sector D (DAVID) summit was held on May 25 at the Queens Library, 37-44 21st St. in Astoria while Sector A is scheduled for June 1 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Boulevard Gardens Assembly Hall, 51-42 31st Ave. and Sector B (BOY) takes place on June 7 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Bohemian Hall, 29-19 24th Ave. in Astoria.

“I encourage everyone to come out and meet with your NCOs and let us know what’s going on in your neighborhood,” Fortune said.

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