The 45th Precinct now has a new leader sitting behind the large, stately desk in the commander’s office.
Captain James McGeown, a 26-year veteran with almost his entire career as a patrol cop on the streets, took the helm of the precinct at a time when local crime has been down at perhaps the lowest rate in the borough.
At the same time, relations with the community were at their highest during the two-year run of his predecessor, Deputy Inspector Russell Green.
McGeown officially took over on Wednesday, August 29 when Green was transferred to the busier 43rd Precinct in neighboring Soundview shorlty after his promotion.
McGeown came from the 52nd Precinct in University Heights and Bedford Park, where he was the executive officer, and also in charge of the local Impact program.
“I know Russ Green for a very long time,” said McGeown. “I know that Russ is very good at what he does, and we want to keep things moving in the same direction that things have been going – crime down and community relations up.”
“There is a bigger need for quality-of-life initiatives,” said McGeown. “Since I have been here, a large amounts of the complaints that I have heard are quality-of-life type issues. There are crime issues too, and we will have to deal with both. I am very confident in the personnel here. In partnership with the community, we should have a smooth run here.”
Three of his top priorities, he noted, are reaching out to community leaders and elected officials and developing relations with them, familiarizing himself with crime trends and known offenders while interacting with his officers, and learning the lay of the land.
As of yet, he has not planned any major reorganizations of the precinct’s manpower, but is learning his personnel and will not rule anything out, he said.
McGeown said that his experience in a patrol oriented function for much of his career, will serve the people of the precinct well.
“You pick up some things in 27 years,” said McGeown.
McGeown came “on the job” in January 1986 and was assigned to Manhattan North in 1987. He was promoted to sergeant in 1993 and landed first in the 19th Precinct, and then the 20th, both in upper Manhattan.
He subsequently served in the 25th and 28th Precinct as a sergeant, before becoming a lieutenant – and his first Bronx assignment in the 43rd Precinct. He worked there in patrol and as an integrity control officer for about four years.
He was assigned to Riverdale and Kingsbridge’s 50th Precinct in 2008, where he was in special operations, and then, upon promotion to captain earlier this year, to the 52nd Precinct.
McGeown who grew up in Queens, is the son of a police lieutenant who retired in 1988. His brother is also a police officer in the 109th Precinct in Queens, as his wife Marjorie is a police officer in Manhattan.
The couple, who live in Rockland County, have an 8-year-old and 10-year old, and McGeown has two college-age children from a previous marriage.
Patrick Rocchio can be reach via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (718) 742-3393