2004-10-21 / Top Stories

Safety Is Main Topic At Mill Basin Civic Meeting

By Eric Goodman

Safety was the number one concern at the October 12 Mill Basin Civic Association meeting held at the Ame-rican Legion Hall on Avenue N as residents of East 55 Street voiced their fears about a recent shooting that occurr-ed following a house party between avenues M and N.

Deputy Inspector Kevin McGinn, commanding officer at the 63rd Pre-cinct, was on hand to provide information. He said that his officers are continuing the investigation and will try to keep the community apprised as the case develops.

Councilman Lew Fiddler also assured the crowd he would provide more in-formation when it arises.

McGinn said he would assign extra patrols to the area, which he hopes will control some of the problems created by the family who lives at the location of the house party and also by patrons at a nearby bar on Avenue N.

More cops will also soon be assigned near Kings Plaza to help curb the in-flux of crime that usually occurs as the holiday shopping season approaches.

“Activity for our street narcotics unit is usually down during the colder months, so we’ll take those officers and place them in and around the mall to hopefully stop the theft that usually increases during Christmas time,” said McGinn.

Another problem in the vicinity of Kings Plaza are dollar vans, which State Senator Carl Kruger stressed must be dealt with as soon as possible.

The senator suggested that guard-rails be installed on the Avenue U side of the mall which he hopes would help stop pedestrians from crossing in the middle of the street as they enter and exit the vans. Kruger said guardrails would have openings only at the crosswalks, forcing customers to enter and exit these vans “in an organized and legal manner.”

Tom Fitzgerald of the Department of Sanitation reminded residents about the new residential street cleaning laws that requires Sanitation officials to check areas in front of homes, between the curb and 18 inches into the street, from 8 to 9 a.m. and Noon to 1 p.m. daily. When an area is found in violation, he said, officials will issue summonses that could exceed $100.

“I don’t agree with the law change, but this is what the city council says we must do,” said Fitzgerald. “It used to be that we only issued summonses when a neighbor requested our presence about an extremely dirty sidewalk, but now we must issue these tickets no matter what the situation.”

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