114th Precinct officials gathered with neighbors, local leaders, civics and lawmakers including NYS Senator Toby Ann Stavisky, on Friday evening, March 10, for a 3-hour seminar on a laundry list of hot-button crime prevention tips and NYPD support initiatives designed to help maintain quality of life and reduce criminal activity within the command.
The seminar included tips on how to identify and prevent being taken in by scammers who threaten the public by phone, in person and through the mail – who may demand immediate payment by victims to avoid arrest or other legal action for bogus reasons.
NEVER give out your Social Security number or other personal information to anyone offering you, or a family member through you, a way out of what seems like a serious legal or law enforcement situation, police said. Hang up, walk away and report the incident to police at your local precinct.
Always track shipment and delivery data of packages and arrange for delivery when you know you will be at home. If your home or apartment building is equipped with video surveillance, post signs warning crooks of the cameras or ask your superintendent or landlord to post signs to deter possible thefts.
TRAFFIC SAFETY PACKAGE
Police at the Astoria Boulevard station-house presented a package of Traffic Safety Tips for motorists, pedestrians and cyclists, including a list of “Do’s and Don’ts” such as the New York State Window Law, that prohibits the use of tinted windows that block a clear view inside vehicles,
Modified Mufflers: Officials are expanding the use of “noise cameras” throughout the five boroughs to crack down on drivers who tear through local streets in loud, illegally modified vehicles, police said.
The “Sleep Act” sound tracking system, effective since summer 2022, employs a camera with a sound meter that picks up all noises over 85 decibels emitted by vehicles within 50-feet, police said. A first offense carries a fine of $800, a second offense carries a fine of $1,700 and each additional offense carries a fine of $2,500 for vehicles caught on the visual-audio cameras. Under the Sleep Act, repair shops that make illegal modifications also face stiff fines, authorities said.
114th Precinct officials included information on their highly successful, Illegal Dirt Bike enforcement that cracks down on all-terrain vehicles, illegal motorcycles, etc., that endanger motorists and pedestrians by zig-zagging in and out of traffic and sound off in loud decibels.
Other enforcement included double-parked vehicles, enforcement of regulations against motorists texting, emailing, chatting and searching on electronic devices while driving; DWI and Drunk Driving crackdowns (including holiday zero-tolerance crackdowns).
The seminar also provided information on:
•The NYPD Patrol Borough Queens North (PBQN) Prom Dress & Attire program. Anyone wishing to donate dresses, suits, etc., for teens who cannot afford proper attire for their prom can donate locally on April 29 at the 114th Precinct stationhouse.
•Applications and information on employment opportunities as NYPD School Crossing Guards.
•PBQN Shop & Talk Mentor Group for young men – February 22, at 25-35 Astoria Boulevard. Info at 917-288-3587.
•Applications for the NYPD Youth-Leadership Council.
•The NYPD Youth Explorer Program.
•Subway, Bus Safety Tips, elevator safety tips, ATM Safety Tips.
•Prepaid gift card scams.
Police also offered common sense tips on how to prevent vehicle theft.
•NEVER leave your vehicle running while you stop into a bank, fast food restaurant, etc.
•NEVER leave electronic devices, jewelry, wallets, cell phones etc. in view when parking vehicles on the street, in private driveways or other private spaces.
Victims of Domestic Violence are advised of a new hotline, Project Safe at 212-577-7700, where they can seek assistance and relocation.
For more information on NYPD Crime Prevention initiatives, the NYPD VIN, Bicycle Etching Programs or the new Catalytic Converter Etching Program or to make an appointment for a free-of-charge NYPD Crime Prevention Survey at your home or business, call the Precinct Crime Prevention officer at 718-626-9324.
For information on a wide range of NYPD community outreach programs and projects or for a schedule of 114th Precinct Community Council meetings, call the Community Affairs Officers at 718-626-9327.—Liz Goff