Robbery, burglary up in 13th precinct

Deputy Inspector Steven Hellman at the recent community council meeting (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Robbery and burglary are up in the neighborhood, Deputy Inspector Steven Hellman reported at the 13th precinct’s monthly Community Council meeting this past Tuesday. Both crimes are up by 50% in the last 28 day period, Hellman said, with a citywide bank robbery pattern contributing to the increase in the number of robberies for the precinct. 

Robberies have been an issue for the precinct for the last few months as well, particularly ones committed by teenagers who live at the Administration for Children’s Services facility on First Avenue just north of Bellevue, but Hellman said that none of the robberies from the last few weeks have been attributed to ACS kids. Three teens have been arrested in the last month for robberies out of 21 incidents, Hellman specified, but none of them live at the ACS facility. 

Hellman said that there are currently three patterns that are affecting the increase in robberies and burglaries for the precinct. One is attributed to a bank robbery pattern in which a man who doesn’t have a weapon passes a note to tellers and demands cash. Hellman said that the pattern is citywide, with four of the incidents occurring in the 13th precinct. 

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Stuyvesant Town residents tell cops the biggest problem is Hell on two wheels

Traffic Safety Officer Javier Alvarez and NCO officers Peter Rodriguez and Manuel Rodriguez address Stuyvesant Town residents’ bike-related concerns. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Electric bikes as well as the old-fashioned variety of two-wheelers wound up being the hot topic at the first meeting of the 13th Precinct’s Neighborhood Coordinating Officer program for residents of Stuyvesant Town.

Officers from the 13th Precinct were at the Stuyvesant Town Community Center last Thursday evening for the new NCO program and addressed the bike operations being conducted in the area.

In particular, the NYPD has been cracking down on delivery people who use e-bikes and 13th Precinct Traffic Safety Officer Javier Alvarez said that the precinct conducted over 20 separate operations last year. During that time, 135 e-bikes were confiscated and summonses were given. All the while, officers, perhaps as a warning, would post photos of the confiscated bikes on the precinct’s Twitter feed.

Alvarez said that there is some confusion among residents about what’s legal and what’s not regarding e-bikes, which are a frequent topic of discussion at the regular precinct community council meetings.

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Thirteenth Precinct launches neighborhood policing program

Police Officers Manny Rodriguez and Andrew Rodriguez have been assigned to patrol in Stuyvesant Town. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

A new program aimed at getting police officers better acquainted with members of the community where they patrol launched at the 13th Precinct on Tuesday with NYPD introduced residents to the officers who would be assigned to their blocks.

NYPD’s Chief of Patrol Rodney Harrison emphasized that the new initiative, known as the Neighborhood Coordinating Officer (NCO) program, is aimed at building relationships and is similar to CPOP, a community policing program that the department discontinued about 20 years ago.

Residents at the launch had questions about exactly what kind of problems the NCO officers can help with, and Harrison encouraged everyone at the meeting to get in touch with their NCO officer, whether or not they have a problem.

“The most important thing is that everyone gets home safely to their families,” Harrison said of the program’s goal.

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