As the Adams administration approaches the 100-day benchmark, New York City saw crime rise for the fourth straight month — a 36.5% rise from last year — as shootings and thefts increased in March. In the Bronx, almost every statistical crime category, with exception of rape, saw a rise of more than 30% since February.
Kingbridge’s 50th Precinct and Hunts Points’ 41st Precinct saw the biggest spikes, 90% and 86%, respectively, in crimes over the past month, with major jumps in felony assaults and robberies. To date, there have been 2,098 criminal offenses in the Bronx, a 48% increase over the same timeframe last year.
Robberies (+37.9%), grand larceny (+34%) and burglary (+30.2%) all jumped last month in the borough, and NYPD officials in Bronx precincts told the Bronx Times that retail theft will become a focus of the new Neighborhood Safety Teams — a reconfiguration of the NYPD’s anti-crime units that were disbanded in 2020 — which includes more than 400 assigned officers.
According to the NYPD, since their deployment on March 14, the first 218 of the officers assigned to Neighborhood Safety Teams have made 121 arrests, including 25 for gun possession. The teams assembled are working in the 30 precincts and four Police Service Areas accounting for 80% of the city’s shooting incidents in 2021.
In recent weeks, innocent bystanders have been caught in the middle of reckless gunfire, including a 61-year-old woman who died from stray gunfire in the Fordham section this week, and a 12-year-old Brooklyn boy who was shot dead in the passenger seat of a car by a stray bullet on March 31.
“The officers doing this vital work are ensuring that these guns never victimize another New Yorker,” said Chief of Department Kenneth Corey. “This is the most dangerous kind of work we do, but it can have the greatest impact on public safety. Our officers are precisely targeting the small number of criminals willing to carry a gun, and to use it.”
The Adams administration has put gun violence and gun proliferation at the top of its crime strategy. Citywide shooting incidents increased by 16.2% in March compared with the same period last year. In March, officers made 410 gun arrests driving the first quarter total to 1,207 illegal firearms arrests, the highest number of quarterly gun arrests since early 2021.
“The NYPD will continue to provide fair, effective, and responsive policing that best reflects the needs of the communities we serve,” said Police Commissioner Keechant L. Sewell. “But the NYPD needs the steadfast commitment of all its partners, pulling in the same direction, to realize our goal of public safety for every New Yorker.”
Reach Robbie Sequeira at firstname.lastname@example.org or (718) 260-4599. For more coverage, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @bronxtimes