April 1, 2011 By Christian Murray
Captain Donald Powers, the head of the 108th Police Precinct, said earlier this week that the number of reported crimes dropped 19 percent for the 28 days ending March 27, compared to the same 28-day period in 2009.
Powers, who spoke at the precinct’s monthly meeting on Tuesday, said that crime was down 5.6% for the year through March 27—compared to the same period in 2009. Just one month earlier, before this recent decline, crime was up modestly for the year.
“We had a rough month in January but the numbers have seen a steady decline,” Powers said, whose precinct covers Woodside, Sunnyside and Long Island City.
Many disturbing incidents that occured in February seem to have disappeared. For instance, there have not been any further cases of young Asian women being mugged near the 52nd Street subway station. In early February, three incidents occurred. However, no arrests have been made for these crimes.
Additionally, there have been no arrests made following the 3 burglaries that took place last month near 40th Street and 47th Ave. However, the police said that no other incidents have been reported in the vicinity.
Furthermore, the police said that the south side of Queens Blvd is patrolled just as heavily as elsewhere. “The police go to all incidents,” said Lt. Mark Wachter.
Two women complained about Chica Chica cards (cards soliciting prostitution) being handed out next to Studio 46, which is on 46th Street between Greenpoint and 47th Aves. One woman said there are two men that even distribute them to children.
But Powers said there was nothing the cops could do, since it was a “free speech issue” and any new law to ban them was likely to be unconstitutional.
In terms of Studio 46, Wachter described it as a club that has “one or two fights here or there” but is no worse than any other.
Meanwhile, the 108 precinct is the only command in Queens that has been told to focus on enforcing bike laws. This year, about 100 violations have been issued.
The police reported the following crime numbers (by type) for the entire precinct for the 28 day period ending March 20:
- No murders- compared to 1 for the same 28-day period in 2009
- No rapes – compared to two for the same 28-day period in 2009
- 6 robberies – down from 11 for the same period last year
- 5 felony assaults – down from 12 last year
- 23 burglaries – the same as last year
- 38 grand larcenies – up from 27
- 18 grand larceny autos – the same as last year.