Forum Photo by Michael V. Cusenza
Barbara McNamara (l.) and Maria Asaro of the Howard Beach-Lindenwood Civic on Tuesday marked the recent promotion of Brian Bohannon to Deputy Inspector from Captain with a cake.
By Michael V. Cusenza
Howard Beach is “one of the safest communities in the safest big city in the country,” according to the 106th Precinct’s top cop.
And on Tuesday evening, Deputy Inspector Brian Bohannon presented numbers that support that claim.
Overall, crime is down 8 percent compared to this point last year. Additionally, over the most recent 28-day period, crime is down 19 percent compared to the same 28-days in 2017.
And an even deeper dive into City Police Department statistics reveals that major crime in the South Queens command over the past 16 years has plummeted 42 percent.
“The precinct is absolutely on the right track,” Bohannon declared at the Howard Beach-Lindenwood Civic meeting at St. Helen Catholic Academy. “It’s better than it’s ever been.”
However, no command is devoid of crime. Auto offenses remain an issue in most Queens precincts, including the 106. Vehicle theft might have dropped like a rock over the past 16 years (-86 percent), but it’s up 20 percent year-to-date in the precinct compared to 2017. And “90 percent” of the reported auto-related crimes—grand larceny, petit larceny, criminal mischief—involve possessions removed from unsecured cars, Bohannon noted.
“We really need you guys to secure your vehicles and belongings,” the precinct’s commanding officer sounded what has become a familiar refrain. “Then, by all means that crime of opportunity won’t happen to you.”
Earlier this month, Bohannon characterized the persistent problem of private cars and for-hire autos idling roadside along a stretch of the eastbound Nassau Expressway between Howard Beach and John F. Kennedy International Airport. Over the first six months of 2018, 106th Precinct officers have issued a whopping 311 summonses to drivers in autos idling on the thoroughfare.
“It is a constant nuisance,” Capt. Mike Edmonds, executive officer of the precinct, told The Forum.
With the Fourth of July holiday fast approaching, Bohannon cautioned the crowd at Tuesday evening’s meeting to steer clear of fireworks. The CO noted that last year the precinct received 124 calls for pyrotechnic displays on July 4 alone.