A change of leadership at the 45th Precinct came amid a timekeeping investigation of the precinct’s top brass.
Captain Carlos Ghonz was transferred to command the 45th Precinct from the 46th Precinct on Monday, March 6.
Meanwhile, Deputy Inspector Danielle Raia, the previous commanding officer and Captain David Dent, the executive officer, were abruptly transferred.
Dent has been placed on modified duty, according to the NYPD Deputy Commissioner for Public Information’s office.
According to published reports, the Internal Affairs Bureau is looking into possible instances where the two high-ranking officers were signed in as working when they were not.
A police spokesperson could not discuss the IAB investigation.
Community leaders who knew Deputy Inspector Raia said that she will be missed and that she had a positive impact at the command since taking over in September 2015.
Bob Bieder, 45th Precinct Community Council president, said that Raia was accessible to him and other community leaders day or night via telephone if something major was happening.
He credited her with creating a two-officer team to address 311 complaints, which tend to be quality-of-life issues that are so important in this particular precinct.
“The circumstances were not ideal,” said Bieder of Raia’s transfer. “In my opinion she did a phenomenal job for the community; I hope they find it was a clerical error and nothing more.”
Another council member, John Doyle, said Raia was proactive in mounting operations involving tow trucks operating illegally and in ticketing illegally parked commercial vehicles.
Sonia Feliciano, Riverbay Corp. board director and assistant treasurer, as well as precinct council secretary, said Raia was the only 45th Precinct commanding officer who successfully addressed parking placard misuse on Co-op City’s streets.
“She got that under control and was doing spot checks,” said Feliciano of the placard issue, “When we asked her to come to community events, she was there.”
Raia was truly “a commander for the people,” she said.
A 45th Precinct ‘community partner,’ John Marano, said that Raia was very attentive to community concerns, and was involved in a graffiti cleanup program that he and others founded.
Annie Boller, another council member, said that whenever she presented an issue to the inspector she was “right on it,” and that issues she relayed to Raia from community members were also addressed.
“I thought it was totally up ‘to par,’” said Boller of Raia’s work.
According to a police spokesperson, prior to his most recent assignment, Ghonz was a police officer in the 23rd and 30th precincts, a sergeant in the 46th Precinct and a lieutenant in the 52nd Precinct.
He was appointed to the NYPD in January 2005.