Cops warn of spike in scams, larcenies: Crime down overall, but scam calls, pick-pocketings and assaults are up

By Maria Rocha-Buschel 

Deputy Inspector Dave Ehrenberg at the 13th Precinct (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Deputy Inspector Dave Ehrenberg at the 13th Precinct (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

At the 13th Precinct Community Council’s most recent monthly meeting this past Tuesday, Deputy Inspector David Ehrenberg told residents about the slight decrease in overall crime for the area in the last month, although there has been a spike in larcenies.

The number of grand larcenies jumped by 7.7 percent in the last month, although Ehrenberg noted that the precinct is still down 4.9 percent for the year. He said that there has been an increase in pickpockets, as well as an increase in cons.

“There’s a new scam that criminals have been trying, where they use information about people’s family and medical conditions,” the commanding officer said. “There have been phone calls from people that the victims know.”

He noted that the phone calls are not actually from people known to the victim but are criminals who have managed to fake a phone number and manipulate the caller ID.

Ehrenberg added that there has also been an increase in ransom call scams, where criminals will call a victim and demand money for a ransom, but he noted that this was a known scam and that anyone receiving such a call should notify 911 immediately.

The commanding officer also noted that there has been a specific increase in grand larcenies of unattended property in restaurants and despite the recent arrest of suspects thought to be responsible for some of these crimes, he warned residents not to be careless with their property while sitting in restaurants in the neighborhood, specifically in eating establishments around Union Square.

“You have to be aware of your personal belongings,” he said.

There has also been an increase in murder for the precinct, which Ehrenberg said was due to the shooting that took place at Home Depot at the end of January ahead of the season’s first big snow storm. A former employee had gone in to confront one of the store managers, shot him and ultimately shot himself.

Inspector Ehrenberg said that the scene was especially chaotic because the store was so busy with people who were preparing for the snow, but commended both civilians and officers for their quick response. Before police arrived, witnesses had taken it upon themselves to perform CPR on the shooting victim and police continued until EMS arrived.

Felony assaults also increased 18.2 percent in the past month, and Inspector Ehrenberg said this was especially notable because half of these incidents were domestic violence. In two of the cases, Ehrenberg said that the suspects had been involved in domestic violence previously with other partners. He added that the increases were also due to an assault on a lieutenant and on nurses at Bellevue who were assaulted while attending to patients.

Robberies were down 14.3 percent for the precinct in the last month and burglaries were down 63 percent.

Inspector Ehrenberg honored the Cop of the Month from both last month and this month, since the officer last month wasn’t able to attend the meeting to be recognized for his work. Officer Phil McGovern was given the award for January for work that he did last December when a child was choking at Blue Smoke on East 27th Street. He was able to dislodge what was blocking the child’s airway before the EMS arrived by using the version of the Heimlich maneuver that is performed on children.

The commanding officer noted that some of the bad press the police department has been receiving in the last few months has overshadowed the officers who have been working hard, so he wanted to acknowledge the good work that McGovern had done.

Officer Jason Negron was given the honor for this month for making an arrest on a suspect who had been noted on a “wanted” poster and was responsible for a number of grand larcenies in various precincts throughout the city.

Detective Ray Dorrian announced at the meeting that the Citizens Police Academy would be starting up soon and the precinct is now accepting applications. He noted that anyone interested in the program can get an application by contacting him at (212) 477-7427.

Community Council President Frank Scala encouraged those at the meeting to take the course, saying that he had taken it before and had found it very useful.

“For that week you are a police officer and you learn a lot of things in it,” he said.

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6 thoughts on “Cops warn of spike in scams, larcenies: Crime down overall, but scam calls, pick-pocketings and assaults are up

  1. Beware of the scam being run by Dan Garodnick, his politician pals, his former law firm, his PR firm, One term Bill, his RE pals, and most importantly the PCVST TA board and dues paying members!

    • Troll,
      Have you nothing better to do than your one-band, non-stop Dan- & TA-bashing? Get a life. Has your cable been on the fritz so you’re missing your Fox News? You seem to have a more tenuous grasp of the truth than even your hero, Bill O’Reilly. Go back to your pitchfork waving pals on the STReport. I bet you’re popular over there. Your endless troll loop on this blog is laughable & boring. Maybe some new material might help… or some details or facts Try practicing in front of the mirror first, though. That way, at least you’ll have an appreciative audience.

      • Dan Garodnick is so far up the REBNY’s ass that when one of then pulls down his pants he has a full blown image of Dans face imbedded between his cheeks. Not that I care about your personal attack because you obviously are an asshole but I will tell you anyway that I have a great life just so you can try and attack that too. Seems its you who needs a mirror, but I’d bet they all break when you look in them.

      • Just for your edification your use of the term troll immediately lets everyone know you have no point and you are just in attack mode because you can’t refute anything someone else said.

  2. Hey, Slash: I’m a dues-paying member of the TA and I’d love to know what you are talking about. How about you come clean with your real name and tell us what, exactly, you are on about. I dare ya. I double-dog dare ya. You may well be right, except for the allegation against the dues-paying members because we really have no say, but I’d like to know what it is that is that is fueling your fire.

    • You’re double dog daring me? What are you five? You claim you’re a dues paying member of the TA yet you are clueless as to what they are up to. Seems they don’t let their members know what they are doing huh? Did you know they have formed a for profit corporation? Why? Did they get your approval? Do your homework before you double dog dare someone! Why on earth would you pay dues to an organization that has become little more than a special interest group and a sales team for Brookfield? Ever wonder why membership is under 10% of apartments or about 3% of tenants?. Dare I say because most people look and listen before they recklessly spend their money? Wake up and smell the coffee this isn’t the TA of old (of which I was a dues paying member for many years). Send your money to an organization that will fight to keep Rent Stabilization alive not an organization hell bent on turning everything to condo’s and feeding the REBNY’s greed led by Dan Garodnick!

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