Wakefield Area News
By Mary V. Lauro
BRONX, NEW YORK, September 19- DI Brian Mullen, the new commander of the 47th Precinct, went to his first community based meeting on Monday, September 10 in Woodlawn. He was met by 220 Woodlawn residents. On Wednesday, September 12 at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Wakefield, he was met by more than 250 members of the 47th Precinct Community Council ($& PCC). It has been reported that he later remarked that he has never been to such a well-attended Precinct Council. If there were 30 people he would have thought it normal. That is all well and good, but will it get us more officers or reduce crime?
Insp. Mullen did not deny that crime is on the rise. In the 47 the rise, so far this year, is above 6 percent. Woodlawn, which is the lowest in crime in the 47, has experienced a rash of burglaries. They are also having difficulty with youths who are terrorizing the community. Residents identified the youths as members of their community, not outsiders. Drug activity was also decried.
Naturally, Woodlawn residents cried out for more police presence. They would like, as we all would, the return of community policing officers which program was terminated some years ago. There is nothing exceptional about their request for a larger and stronger police presence. We all want that.
DI Mullen did not disappoint. He spoke very convincingly about more patrolling for Woodlawn and more foot patrols. Little did he know it would come back to haunt him because at the 47 PCC, members wanted to know where he planned to get the patrol cars and officers he was promising Woodlawn. Did he plan to take them from other neighborhoods that had far higher crime? Did he plan to benefit one neighborhood at the expense of the others?
Not at all, said DI Mullen. He explained that he planned to use some tactics he had developed in order to service the entire 47 Precinct community. He said Borough Command gives him officers at least three times a week. And he hinted he had 12 officers that had come along with him. In short he vowed to treat all of the 47 equally, which was what the Council wanted to hear even though that will not halt the rising crime rate.
When we were winning the war against crime, we had a much larger police force. Now that the force has been diminished, criminals are licking their chops. Opportunity is knocking for them. Moreover, the diminished force must also and primarily deal with the threat of terrorism which means that Manhattan has officers tripping over each other, while we here in the Bronx send up cheers when we see one.
Regarding burglary, the question is, how safe are you? Safety Officer Chin will gladly come to your home to do a safety survey. He will point out weaknesses and prescribe usually inexpensive cures to keep burglars out. For an appointment call, (718) 920-1239.
We remind you, even though you probably will not be receiving this notice in time due to the horrible service we are now receiving from the Post Office that the League is meeting tonight at 7:30 p.m. at Redeemer Lutheran Church's Undercroft. Redeemer is located at Barnes and Boyd Avenues. Assemblyman Carl Heastie will be unable to attend. In. his place the guest speaker will be Elizabeth Gill, President of the 47 PCC assisted by Community Affairs Officer Soto. Come! Our meetings are fun.