Residents gathered at the Purpose Life Church, 4021 Flatlands Avenue, for the 63rd Precinct’s Sector Charlie quarterly Build the Block meeting on Wednesday, March 16th, led by Neighborhood Coordination Officers (NCOs) Resner Cadet and James Saintil.
The NCOs provided updates and reported that crime is up in certain areas since last year. Robbery is up 160%, including stealing from food delivery drivers. The perpetrators set up a false location whereby the driver is assaulted and then robbed.
Since it is tax season, Saintil stated that scams are on the rise and warned residents to be as vigilant as possible by confirming the identity of Con Edison workers, the IRS, or even banks, to ensure they are legitimate.
Vehicular larceny is up 60%, as drivers often leave their engines running, allowing for easy theft. Other vehicular issues include the increasing number of catalytic converter thefts and abandoned cars left on the street, the latter of which was the most pressing concern for residents, who expressed their displeasure, claiming multiple cars take up much-needed parking spaces on their blocks.
One resident even claimed that several vehicles had been left in their position for six to eight months along Avenue M and East 72nd Street. Another resident said there are five abandoned cars on East 52nd Street, between Avenues L and M, and when those cars were ticketed, the registrations on them were removed. Others had similar complaints such as churchgoers double-parking on Sunday, as well as drugs being sold on Schenectady Avenue, between Avenues J and K.
Saintil stated that the precinct is working on removing these vehicles with the assistance of the Sanitation Department’s Derelict Vehicle Operations and car towing companies. In the previous week, 10 vehicles were towed and removed. There are setbacks, however, including the requirements for a vehicle to be removed: the vehicle must be unregistered and in low-value condition (i.e. broken windows or damaged), and the police department must find new towing companies to work with.
Nevertheless, the NCOs and the 63rd Precinct are adamant about removing these abandoned cars and fixing whatever other issues Sector Charlie is facing.
The next Build the Block meeting for Sector Charlie will be on Friday, June 24th at 6:30 p.m., at 1914 Utica Avenue. For more information, visit the precinct’s Twitter page at @NYPD63Pct.