Mayor’s Reps Discuss Bus Arson in Crown Heights


By COLlive reporter

Representatives of Mayor Bill De Blasio’s office and the NYPD met with Crown Heights community leaders Tuesday to discuss recent violent incidents in the neighborhood.

In attendance were community representatives Eli Cohen and Chanina Sperlin of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council, community activist Devorah Halberstam, Eli Slavin, community liaison for Congresswoman Yvette Clarke, Rabbi Shea Hecht of NCFJE and activists Yaakov Behrman and Avi Lesches.

The meeting, held at the Jewish Children’s Museum, was led by Mr. Marco A. Carrion, Mayor De Blasio’s Commissioner of Community Affairs, joined by Senior Community Liaison, Mr. Pinny Ringel.

The discussion centered around the city’s response to the spike in violence, most notably the most recent incident, the torching of a bus near Bais Rivkah school by a group of youths.

The details of the Police investigation were presented by Deputy Inspector Mark Magrone, commanding officer of the NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force.

He went through the details of the investigations of the various incidents, and the arrests made last week of the 5 youths accused of the burning of the bus.

Because of the young age of the perpetrators, the case will not be prosecuted by the DA but rather will be handled by the NYC Corporation Counsel in Family Court, Magrone explained.

A representative of the City’s Corporation Counsel explained the system for dealing with young offenders and the levels of disposition that can be taken if a finding is made that their actions would have been a crime if committed by an adult.

Community representatives related their concerns about what they see as a spike in anti-Semitic incidents in the neighborhood, some of whom remarked they had witnessed anti-Semitic incidents at local Community Board meetings as well.

Following the official presentation, a number of the community representatives spoke about the need to do more to educate young people about how to live with their neighbors.

The NYPD officials in attendance committed to visiting local public schools for that purpose, as well as to work to make sure the streets are safe.

Read more at COLlive.



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