New York City is experiencing a spasm of gun violence. Between Friday and Monday, there were 44 separate shooting incidents with 63 victims. Over the same weekend last year, there were 16 shootings with 21 victims.
On July 5 alone, there were 10 people killed by gunshots in the five boroughs of NYC.
This was the third week in a row that shootings in NYC have been more than double in 2020 compared to the same week in 2019.
The situation was so bad that NYPD Manhattan South, one of eight NYPD Bureaus that covers the city, called out the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office on Twitter on July 5 over the failure of anyone from the DA’s Office to show up at any of the numerous shooting scenes over the weekend.
Manhattan DA Cy Vance where are you? No show at any shooting scene!!! Our community is being attacked, there have been 24 people shot in the city in the past 24 hours….Where Are You!!!
— NYPD Manhattan South (@NYPDPBMS) July 5, 2020
NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea pointed out in a media interview that there is currently a record low count of prisoners at Rikker’s Island, and the two facts are not coincidental.
Throw into this mix the “cash bail” reforms adopted by New York that went into effect back on January 1, and the dissolution by Mayor de Blasio of NYPD’s “Anti-Crime” units at the precinct level, and you get a fatal mix of fewer criminals in jail, fewer police on the street, fewer arrests being made, and fewer detentions pending trial.
The “Anti-Crime” units were plainclothes officers assigned to conduct street-level policing based primarily on their own observations. They interdicted criminal activity either before or as it was taking place. A majority of all arrests for illegal firearms possession were made by “Anti-Crime” units. But those operations were all eliminated by de Blasio’s order at the height of violent rioting in New York City on June 15. I’m tempted to say the move was a bow to the mob, but the reality is that de Blasio is so overtly anti-NYPD in just about everything he does as Mayor, his decision to disband the units was something he was as happy to do as the mob was happy to see him do.
Add to that the decision last week led by de Blasio to strip $1 billion from NYPD’s budget, and the lack of leadership from NYC politicians shown during the rioting, and you get a City that is on the verge of being ceded to the criminal element who make a “living” exploiting the law-abiding residents of the City.
Yesterday, the NYPD Chief of Detectives, Rodney Harrison, posted on Twitter another surveillance video of a shooting on a city street in broad daylight in order to seek information from the public about the identity of the shooter.
Earlier this morning, police officers from the 73rd Precinct responded to a 911 call of a male and female shot in front of 41 New Lots Avenue. When they arrived, they discovered a male with a gunshot wound to the head and a female with multiple gunshot wounds. pic.twitter.com/uXNwmhatsO
— Chief Rodney Harrison (@NYPDDetectives) July 3, 2020
Here is a sickeningly similar video posted by NYPD less than three weeks ago.
Earlier today, police officers from the 75th Precinct responded to a call of a male shot in front of 334 Milford Street. When they arrived, they discovered a 35-year-old male with a gunshot wound to the neck. pic.twitter.com/wkkzIiAdzu
— Chief Rodney Harrison (@NYPDDetectives) June 20, 2020
The bail reform laws first went into effect on January 1. The early results were so discomfiting that the NY Legislature amended them after only 3 months to give judges some additional discretion to impose cash bail in more types of cases than they could under the original changes. But those changes did not go into effect until July 1. The impact of the original changes on levels of violent crime in NYC cannot be ignored.
In the first six months of 2020, shooting incidents are up 24% over the same six months in 2019 (317 to 394), and homicides by gunshot are up 25% (127 to 159).
How long will the politicians of New York City allow this to persist?
A better question might be how long will the voters of New York City continue to tolerate politicians of New York City who allow this to persist?