The Q at Parkside

(for those for whom the Parkside Q is their hometrain)

News and Nonsense from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Lefferts and environs, or more specifically a neighborhood once known as Melrose Park. Sometimes called Lefferts Gardens. Or Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Or PLG. Or North Flatbush. Or Caledonia (west of Ocean). Or West Pigtown. Across From Park Slope. Under Crown Heights. Near Drummer's Grove. The Side of the Park With the McDonalds. Jackie Robinson Town. Home of Lefferts Manor. West Wingate. Near Kings County Hospital. Or if you're coming from the airport in taxi, maybe just Flatbush is best.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Spree Hits Home

Flatbush. Rogers. Nostrand. Throw in Lenox near Rogers and you've got a lot of gunplay in just one week. Enough to bring back memories of 2013. Related? Probably not. Except by proximity. Does it relate to the other horrible story dominating the headlines? Most definitely not. And yet, unease is easy to come by these days.

Even the 71st Precinct is much bigger than our immediate vicinity of course. Most of the shootings this year have taken place east of here, and quite a few north of Eastern Parkway. One thing I will note - these nearby shootings are taking place outside because the shooters and victims are mobile at the time - it's not the house party stuff that seemed so common last year. Both shooters and victims may not live around here. Some, like shootings in cars or dollar vans take on a mystery quality - almost cinematic - while others seem like kids with a beef, working it with lead rather than fisticuffs.

The 71st has seen an uptick in shootings - this rash will certainly see us top last years numbers. As they like to say the figures are historically very low...but that matters not when you live round the corner from the sound of gunfire.

There's no questioning the numbers - shootings are up around 5% over last year. It's the shooting numbers and the Felony Assaults that I pay most attention to - and rapes and murders of course whenever there's a spike. Other crimes seem almost faddish in their ups and downs. The iPhone theft craze seems to have dissipated as the phones become cheaper and less easy to turn to cash. Thus robberies have plummeted. Autos of certain makes and models become suddenly easy to convert to green, or easy to hotwire.

Does it feel like something new is going on? Personally I can't tell yet, and I look to Vinnie Martinos and Inspector Fitzgibbon for clues as to what's going on here and whether there's something, anything, that can be done in the short term other than - get some bodies out there. And you can rest assured I'll put in a good word on that count. You can always email Vinnie and add your voice!

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