Hey Blaz: We Need Cops!
Too Many Shootings,
Too Few Cops!
NEWS N’ VIEWS
Father Richard F. Gorman
Community Board #12 (The Bronx)
BRONX, NEW YORK, MAY 22- Our newly arrived Commanding Officer at the Forty-seventh Precinct, Deputy Inspector Raul R. Stephenson, is certainly receiving his “baptism by fire.” The number of shootings as of late has placed our Precinct in the top tier of shootings in our beloved Borough of The Bronx and the entire City of New York.
I trust that the good Deputy Inspector has not, and will not, become disheartened. I suspect not. Something tells me that he is fired up to make our numbers in this category go down and stay down. I can tell you that my colleagues and I on Community Board #12 (The Bronx) stand ready to support our Commanding Officer in any way that we can. I can tell you that one course of action for which the Community Board will be advocating will remain sizably increasing the number of Police
Officers in our Forty-seventh Precinct.
Traditionally, our local Precinct has been routinely short-changed when it comes to the assignment of new and/or additional Police Officers. In terms of territory required to be policed, the “4 – 7” ranks right near the top in our Borough. I hasten to add that the confines of the Precinct are by no means contiguous and compact. The Woodlawn Heights neighborhood juts out on the northwestern margins of Bronx Community District #12 and the Pelham community that includes that portion of The Bronx that bears a Pelham Manor / Westchester County Zip Code and that one must traverse through Westchester in order to access correspondingly hangs out like an appendage along the District’s northeastern boundaries. This geographical idiosyncrasy, with its nonconforming peculiarity, does not make for easy patrolling.
Add to this the fact that the population of Community Board #12 (The Bronx), thanks to the haphazard, pro-development-despite-the-detriment policies of the prior Municipal Administrations of Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, has substantially shifted upward and you have, in my humble estimation, a cogent and reasonable argument that more cops are called for in the “4 – 7,” and sooner rather than later. Nevertheless, One Police Plaza, “1 – P – P,” as it is affectionately called, the Headquarters of the New York City Police Department (N.Y.P.D.), stubbornly clings to the outdated and specious argument that the Precinct is adequately staffed by a sufficient number of cops. Maddeningly, the powers-that-be at Police Headquarters cite alleged scientific and statistical support for this rather unscientific determination that totally and obviously ignores the aforesaid significant facts. They routinely allude to the rather mysterious and not-ever-to-be-faulted “RAND FORMULA” that supposed provides a systematic, precise and infallible methodology for assessing how many Police Officers are needed and justified in any given command.
“RAND FORMULA” be damned! Whatever it is, it does not suffice for our Forty-seventh Precinct. We genuinely and straight away need more Police Officers and we should not continue to be short-changed. A new Administration sits tall in the saddle at City Hall. It has promised to be more attentive to the needs and concerns of our neighborhoods.
Let it hear this concern of Community Board #12 (The Bronx) and be attentive to this need. Mayor Bill de Blasio has promised and signaled that he is neither enamored nor bound to the priorities and approach of Administrations past. This issue of ours would be an excellent opportunity and venue to so demonstrate.
Our men and women in the Laconia Avenue stationhouse do an outstanding job protecting us day in and day out. It is about time that they got more help to do so. They deserve it . . . . . . and so do we! What do you say, Your Honor? May we have more cops . . . . . . PLEASE?!?!?
Until next time, that is it for this time!