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Crime increase in Astoria deserves NYPD’s attention

An open letter to NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly:

Thank you for your efforts and dedication over several years that have succeeded in driving crime to historic lows.

But I write today regarding a serious situation affecting the safety and security of residents in western Queens.

Recently, our neighborhood has experienced a rash of violent crimes, including a murder by strangulation and two shootings in the Ditmars Boulevard area. This year, the 114th Precinct has reported an increase in robberies, burglaries, grand larcenies and, most alarmingly, a murder rate almost double last year’s total.

Unfortunately, while crime increased, the number of officers assigned to the 114th Precinct decreased.

A hallmark of your tenure as commissioner has been an effort to flood neighborhoods experiencing increased crime with additional officers to make those neighborhoods safer. It seems to me the people of western Queens deserve no less than such an effort at this time.

Accordingly, I request you inform me of the steps being taken to combat the recent increase in crime in our area and provide me with any plans in place to ensure that residents of western Queens will be protected in a manner commensurate with the professionalism and competence to which they have grown accustomed in the 114th Precinct.

Thank you for your efforts to keep our city safe. I look forward to continuing our work together to make western Queens an even better place to live and work. I await your reply.

Michael Gianaris

State Assemblyman

Astoria

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