Middle Village Crime News Relayed at JPCA Meeting

Middle Village Crime News Relayed at JPCA Meeting

The new commanding officer of the 104th Precinct Captain Michael Cody is still meeting with the community to provide updates about crime and receive input about problem areas and quality of life issues.

Last week, Cody visited the Juniper Park Civic Association (JPCA) to discuss what the precinct is working on specific problems in Middle Village.

JPCA President Bob Holden introduced Cody to civic members as one of the best he has worked with. After calling or e-mailing the precinct about a problem, “within minutes Captain Cody gets back to me, and usually it’s resolved by that night,” Holden said.

Cody said there are no minor issues. Working with the Manhattan gang squad, he said he saw how small problems could snowball into a bigger situation.

“A derelict vehicle, a broken window, they can led to different things,” Cody said.

The biggest crimes in the Middle Village area are auto thefts, which saw a spike during 2010. But Cody reported that the precinct is down 32 percent in grand larceny autos over the same time period last year. Last year, the precinct reported 430 auto thefts, and to date, only 187 have been reported this year. Cody said police officers are working diligently to prevent future crime.

“They’re all over this, trying to track this down,” Cody said.

Another troubling rise in crime has been grand larcenies, which has seen a 23 percent increase this year, particularly from cars. Thieves are breaking into cars to steal any electronics or money left in the vehicles or taking the tires and rims from the cars.

Cody stressed that a few simple steps can dramatically reduce the risk of falling victim to these crimes. Residents should always remember to take all personal belongings out of their car. To prevent tire and rim thefts, Cody said parking close to the curb and investing in tools like a locking hubcap makes thieves work harder, when they would rather make the quickest “score” possible.

Residents thanked Cody and the precinct for their hard work before asking them to look into several longstanding quality of life concerns. Speeding has been a major problem in the area. One resident complained that cars often speed down 69th Road from Metropolitan Avenue. Middle Village resident Dave Shapiro relayed a similar problem of “suicidal speeders” on 80th Street from Furmanville Road.

“We don’t see any police presence in our neighborhood,” Shapiro said.

Cody said the precinct does focus on speeders and has speed sets in problem areas. He also said at some places, working with the Department of Transportation to install traffic calming measures like speed bumps or stop signs might be the best solution.

With school back in session, residents also relayed the growing frustration with parents double and triple parking at schools, causing dangerous situations on the roads. Maspeth resident Manny Caruana reminded the JPCA crowd that parents aren’t the only problem.

“School buses have no regard for any traffic regulations,” he said.

Cody acknowledged that this issue has been relayed to him from various civic groups throughout the precinct. “It’s quite a problem,” he said. Officers have been directed to increase their presence near schools during dismissal times.

After Cody’s presentation, Holden presented certificates of appreciation to the new commanding officer and various officers from precinct’s night squad.

By Eric Yun



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