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Crime drops 10% in 111th Pct.

The 111th Precinct experienced drops in burglary, grand larceny and auto theft during the first quarter of 2008, but saw an increase in robberies and felony assaults, according to Police Department statistics.

There were no murders in the first three months this year or a year ago.

Overall crime in the precinct dropped 10 percent when comparing this year's first quarter to the same span last year.

The precinct recorded 71 burglaries during the year's first quarter, a 24 percent decrease from the 94 burglaries reported during the same quarter last year. The 111th Precinct, which covers Bayside, Auburndale, Douglaston, Little Neck and Hollis Hills, is a target for burglaries due to the area's affluent residents. Police attribute the drop to several burglary arrests made in the last year.

In addition to a drop in burglaries, the precinct had nearly a 5 percent decline in grand larcenies and a 20 percent drop in auto theft. The number of auto thefts fell from 35 incidents recorded in the first quarter of 2007 to 28 recorded in the first quarter of 2008.

Car theft used to be the area's No. 1 crime, but due to a citywide task force devoted to cracking auto theft and organized crime, there has been a decrease, the 111th Precinct said.

Despite the decline in burglaries, the precinct had a 25 percent increase in robberies. Twenty-five robberies were reported so far this year compared to 20 percent last year.

A big problem for the area has been people stealing small technology items, such as iPods and Sidekicks, the precinct said. There was a rash of car break-ins that occurred at the Douglaston Golf Course April 12, the 111th Precinct said, after the first quarter ended.

Eleven incidents of felony assaults were recorded during the first quarter of 2008, a 120 percent increase from the five cases in the first three months last year. Police attributed the rise to assaults made on police officers and school security agents who were trying to make arrests. This includes the arrest of a 19-year-old Little Neck woman in February accused of striking an officer who arrested her for drunk driving, the precinct said.

In 2007 and 2008, no homicides were reported in the year's first quarter. Two rapes were reported during this same quarter in 2007, but no rapes were recorded this year.

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