Posted by: vote4claxton | January 1, 2009


Despite Murder Rise, NYPD Shows Overall Dip in Major Crimes

Mayor Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly Dec. 23 announced that murders rose 5 percent compared to last year — when the department recorded the fewest homicides in at least 45 years — but major crime as a whole dropped four percent during the same period.


The city figured to still close the year with fewer than 600 murders — below the tally for every year from 1963 through 2001 — for the seventh year in a row. The Mayor and the Police Commissioner credited Operation Impact, a targeting of resources to trouble spots, with helping to drop the felony crime rate by 30 percent over the past seven years.

Mayor: ‘A Testament to Cops’

“The continuing reduction of crime is a testament to the quality of our police force — the finest in the world — and to our determination to find innovative ways of turning up the heat on criminals,” Mr. Bloomberg said in a statement. “In the months after 9/11 — when the economic outlook was particularly bleak — we were determined to make our streets safer and more livable. Thanks to the men and women of the NYPD, we achieved that.”

Mr. Kelly said the recent phase of Operation Impact, a program that floods high-crime areas with just-graduated Police Officers, has driven down crime by 16 percent in those zones. “It’s smart policies such as Operation Impact that have helped the NYPD to continue building on its historic crime-fighting gains, even as the force itself has gotten smaller,” the Mayor said following a promotion ceremony at Police Headquarters. He added that the recent budget deal with the City Council, which provides funding for two 250-person police classes next year, would allow Operation Impact to continue. An earlier plan proposed cutting the entire 1,000-plus cadet class slated for January.

Critic Questions Numbers

Citywide, crime dropped in all categories except for murder and robbery, which rose 2 percent. The declines compared to last year were in the single-digits, with felony assault decreasing 8 percent. Transit-system crime and public-housing crime decreased 4 percent and 3 percent respectively. The downward trend was more pronounced in a comparison of this year’s data to 2001 figures, which showed auto theft decreased 58 percent. Transit-system crime has dropped 40 percent in that time.

Marquez Claxton, the co-founder of 100 Blacks in Law Enforcement Who Care, blasted the NYPD in a statement. “Absent in [Commissioner Kelly’s] heavily-spun statement was data on the thousands of other crimes committed in this city such as misdemeanor assault, weapons possession, drug sale and possession and a multitude of other criminal offenses contained in the New York State Penal Law,” he said. “His spin of what constitutes a crime is nothing more than shameless self-promotion based on selective examination of un-audited Police-generated data.”


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