106th Tackles Noise With ‘Silent Night’ Twitter Initiative

106th Tackles Noise With ‘Silent Night’ Twitter Initiative

This poster advertised a party in South Ozone Park that police said was reminiscent of a prevalent trend in the area: Professionally run house parties that are illegal and often cause major noise headaches for neighbors.  Photo Courtesy of NYPDSouth Queens residents who thought they’d be able to throw massive parties far into the night got a dose of reality last weekend, when the 106th Precinct launched an offensive against noise offenders.

Led by Deputy Inspector Jeffrey Schiff, commanding officer of the 106th, the precinct went after individuals making life unbearable for others via a special project known as “Twitter Silent Night.” The initiative allowed residents to report noise complaints by tweeting them to the precinct – though police stressed that this was only the case last weekend, and individuals facing loud noise should report it to 311.

From Friday, June 13 to Sunday, June 15, residents were able to tweet their complaints.

“I will be working this weekend, and if you can’t sleep, I can’t sleep,” Schiff said in a message last week to the community.

A spokesman from the 106th, Detective Kenneth Zorn, said police reported 130 noise complaints over the weekend – up from the 61 reports at the same time last year.

“It wasn’t that there was more noise, but with all the publicity surrounding what we were doing, more people were reporting it,” Zorn said.

Schiff worked from 4 p.m. to 5 a.m. on both Friday and Saturday nights and from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. Sunday night, as the late night hours are typically the prime times noise complaints increase.

The commanding officer also responded personally to 31 noise jobs, during a weekend when he was also responding to 911 emergency jobs – such as a serious motorcycle accident that occurred around 5 p.m. Saturday at 149th Ave. and 123rd St. The motorcyclist was found unconscious in the intersection next to his Suzuki motorcycle, police said.

The bulk of the noise complaints were reports about illegal house parties, according to officials. Police said residents have increasingly been advertising large-scale professional parties at their homes – which have been the source of many a neighbor complaining about noise stemming from, for example, dee-jays using “sound equipment that belongs in a stadium,” police said. Part of the problem, Zorn noted, is that, with the rise of social media, it has become far more easy for individuals to advertise these parties – until “you wind up with parties where the people who originally planned them can no longer control them.”

By Anna Gustafson


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