Council Members Meet with Commissioner Bratton to Combat Rise in Anti-Semitic Crimes

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Wednesday, just hours before Shemini Atzeres, Councilman David G. Greenfield met with New York Police Department Commissioner William Bratton and his top staff to discuss the recent rise in anti-Semitic crimes around New York City. Council Members Mark Treyger and Stephen Levin joined the meeting to review recent hate crimes and strategize on ways to put an end to the rise in violent anti-Semitic attacks and vandalism. Also in attendance was the Deputy Chief of the NYPD James W. Murtagh, members of the Hate Crimes Task Force, Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce, Captain Mark Magrone, and Director of Legislative Affairs from the Mayor’s Office Jon Paul Lupo.

“We must have zero tolerance for anti-Semitic crimes anywhere but especially not in New York City,” said Councilman David G. Greenfield. “It’s shocking that we have not only seen an increase in anti-Semitism but that anti-Semitic crimes make up the largest portion of hate crimes in New York City.”

During the meeting Councilman Greenfield emphasized the fear that is fueled by the rise in anti-Semitic crimes in New York City. Last year, there were 192 recorded hate crimes, 64 of them were anti-Semitic hate crimes. The NYPD confirmed that this year there has been a 50% rise of anti-Semitic crimes between the months of July and September. The NYPD has recognized the importance of addressing this issue and has brought in the former Senior Advisor to the United States Secretary of Homeland Security to research this area and come up with a plan on fighting hate crimes more aggressively. To date, only 108 arrests have been made out of 313 hate crimes so far this year.

Councilman Greenfield hosted a rally at City Hall right before Rosh Hashanah with twenty-five other elected officials to make it clear that these hateful crimes are not welcome in the City of New York and demanded that the city do more to reduce anti-Semitic crimes. Following that September rally Commissioner Bratton agreed to sit down with the Council Members to discuss ways to reduce hate crimes across the city and ensure all precincts are accurately reporting hate crimes. During the meeting, Greenfield urged Commissioner Bratton to work on strengthening communication between precincts and the local community, especially in an instance of a hate crime, and for the NYPD to be more aggressive in denouncing such crimes. Councilman Mark Tregyer addressed the need for more officers on patrol in neighborhoods with high amounts of hate crimes and Councilman Stephen Levin discussed focusing on hate groups such as a recent gathering of white supremacists in Brooklyn. Councilman Mark Levine sent questions regarding accurate statistics of hate crimes and increasing transparency on hate crime reporting.

“It’s very clear that Commissioner Bratton takes our concerns very seriously,” said Councilman Greenfield. “I am grateful to Police Commissioner Bratton or meeting with us on this issue and acting quickly to put an end to this pattern of heinous crime.”

“Hate crimes have no place in New York City and we must all work together to stamp them out. I want to thank Commissioner Bratton and the NYPD for a productive meeting and for their comprehensive strategy to fight against hate crimes,” said Councilman Stephen Levin.

“I have been concerned with the rise in bias crimes and other incidents in recent months impacting the safety of neighborhoods across southern Brooklyn. I appreciate Commissioner Bratton’s response to these concerns and willingness to work with us in light of issues like the gun violence that continues to plague some residential areas and the hate crimes we have seen across New York City,” said Councilman Mark Treyger.

Council Member Mark Levine, Chair of the Jewish Caucus said: “In order to tackle this crisis, the public needs a full understanding of the scale and scope of anti-Semitic crimes in New York City. We should not have to wait for the state-mandated annual report to be able to access this information. Details on hate crimes should be available on a weekly basis so that everyone can track the progress in combatting this scourge.”

Man & Woman Found Dead in Sheepshead Bay Apartment

Police are investigating the deaths two people found unconscious and unresponsive inside an apartment in Sheepshead Bay.

Police say 43-year-old Michael Huhem was found on a sofa and 44-year-old Kimberly Owens, of Crosby, Texas, was found on the floor nearby. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.

It happened in the man’s home on 3030 Emmons Avenue.

Police did not give a cause of death. The medical examiner’s office is investigating.
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Senator Golden Awards $200K to Local Schools

State Senator Martin J. Golden today is
announcing that he has awarded $200,000 in educational funding, through the New York State Senate, to support and assist the teachers and students of more than fifteen schools in his district.

The funding has been awarded in response to requests from individual schools as to the need for financial assistance to develop and improve instructional programming. Many of the schools included smart boards and laptop carts a top their wish lists recently addressed to Senator Golden.

State Senator Marty Golden stated, “It always gives me great pride to secure funding for our schools which I know is an investment in our future. Our schools must continue to advance with the times, so that our children can learn in a state of the art classroom. Our students deserve the best opportunity, and anything less than that would be a failure.”

“On a regular basis, I speak with the leadership of our schools to better understand the needs of each school I represent. I stand ready to assist each of the schools I represent throughout school districts 20, 21 and 22, and I look forward to building on the progress we have made,”
concluded Senator Marty Golden.

This allocation includes funding for the following schools:

P.S 97, P.S. 102, P.S./I.S. 104, P.S. 127. P.S. 176, P.S. 185, P.S. 195, I.S. 201, P.S. 204, P.S. 207, P.S. 222, I.S. 228, P.S. 238, P.S. 264,
and P.S. 277.

Brooklyn Man Beats 3 Year Old To Death

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Police say a 3-year-old girl has been beaten to death and her 5-year-old brother assaulted at an apartment in Bushwick.

They say Jeida Torres was discovered unconscious and unresponsive Saturday afternoon.

A Fire Department of New York spokesman says Jeida was rushed to a hospital in cardiac arrest and was pronounced dead there.

Her brother is in stable condition at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center.

Neighbor Keith Best tells the New York Daily News and New York Post that the boy had big bruises on his face and arms. He says the children’s mother and grandfather sobbed when they arrived home and found out what had happened.

Police say they have made an arrest, but no charges have yet been filed.
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Motorcyclist & Passenger Thrown 36 Feet To Their Death

The NYPD says a motorcyclist and his passenger were killed in an early morning accident on the Gowanus Expressway in Brooklyn.

Police say the 30-year-old man slammed into a cement wall after losing control of his Kawasaki bike while taking a curve.
They say he and his 24-year-old female passenger were ejected. They were thrown about 36 feet, landing under the expressway on 17th Street.

They were both pronounced dead at the scene around 2 a.m. Friday.

They were identified as Jose Chevere and Jalisaa Otero, both from Brooklyn.
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Rep. Michael Grimm, Domenic Recchia Face-Off in Bitter Televised Debate

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Republican Congressman Michael Grimm and Democratic challenger Domenic Recchia engaged in a combative debate Friday in their race to represent Staten Island and part of Brooklyn, with Recchia repeatedly bringing up Grimm’s federal indictment and Grimm insisting he is the best choice for the district.
Grimm, a former Marine and FBI agent, is accused of evading taxes by allegedly hiding more than $1 million in sales and wages, while running a small Manhattan restaurant. He has pleaded not guilty to 20 counts and has a December court date.

Grimm said his trial would be over before the next session of Congress starts and added: “I believe I’m entitled to my day in court just like everyone else”

Asked by the moderator whether he would resign if found guilty, Grimm said, “If I was not able to serve then, of course, I would step aside and there would be a special election.”
Recchia, a former city council member, injected the indictment into arguments over public health funding and bridge tolls.
Grimm said Recchia supported “an $8 toll on the Brooklyn Bridge,” a reference to former Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s failed congestion pricing plan, which Recchia backed.
Recchia responded, “I did not vote to raise the toll. Look where this is coming from! He lied under oath!”

The race to represent New York’s 11th Congressional District is one of the most competitive in the country. Friday’s debate, the first televised face-off in the race, will air Sunday on WABC-TV.

Recchia, 55, has the support of the national Democratic Party, which has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in his campaign. Grimm, 44, has sought to link Recchia with Mayor Bill de Blasio and President Barack Obama, two Democrats unpopular on Republican-leaning Staten Island.

Recchia did not directly answer a question about whether Obama and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are doing a good job of responding to Ebola, saying, “We have to focus on the crisis and helping the people of this city.”

Grimm said he does not believe Obama or the CDC have handled Ebola well. “I think there’s been a lack of leadership,” he said.
Recchia said Grimm has lost the support of his own party because of his indictment and cannot serve effectively in Congress.

“The people of this district deserve better,” Recchia said. “They deserve someone who’s gonna fight for them 24/7, and I’m that person who has a track record of getting things done.”

Grimm told reporters after the debate that Recchia “is a one-trick pony. It’s the indictment and nothing else.”
Grimm, who is seeking his third term, also was captured on camera in January threatening to throw a TV reporter off a balcony after the journalist asked Grimm about an FBI probe into his campaign finances.

Pressed about the confrontation after a debate earlier this month, Grimm said that he apologized to the reporter and that he made a mistake after a stressful day in Congress.
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