For more than a year, Cobble Hill’s safety has been in the hands of NYPD veteran, Deputy Inspector Jeffrey Schiff. Yesterday he passed along word of his reassignment to Queens’ 106th precinct and we thank him for his service. Please read his message below in full and also be sure to soon welcome our new head of the precinct, Captain Justin Lenz.
After an extremely productive year and a half as the Commanding Officer of the 76th Precinct, I must inform you all that I have been transferred from the 76th Precinct to the 106th Precinct located in Howard Beach/Ozone Park Queens effective midnight tonight. Being the Commanding Officer of this precinct since April 2012 was a wonderful and exciting experience for me, one that I shall never forget!
I feel privileged and honored to have served with the hard working men and woman of the innovative 76th Precinct. I also feel privileged and honored to have known so many people who obviously care about their community as evidenced by the great number of notable arrests that were affected because of direct community intervention, the number of Auxiliary volunteers that report to the precinct each day to help out with various needs and events of the community, and the number of Youth Explores that volunteer their time working in the community. Through this police-community cooperation, we were often able to arrest those persons who were responsible for burglary patterns, car break-in patterns, and those who committed violent crimes in our community.
I am also extremely proud of the fact that the 76th Precinct was able to help the community endure and to help rebuild after Hurricane Sandy by working with the various grass root organizations that sprung up out of good will and hard work. This unprecedented and rarely seen union between the police and various local community groups showed the rest of the city a successful example of how this type of partnership can be productively achieved. Further, it showed just how resilient our community really is and that during the course of any crisis we proved we are one people.
Additional excellent examples of cooperation between the police and the community was shown during the Red Hook Housing Development Drug Gang Wars during the months from March to July 2012 and the subsequent Robbery epidemic experienced in Carroll Gardens/Cobble Hill that soon followed in August and September 2012. Concern for the community regarding this violence was expressed through various forums and after frank/tense discussions between the police and the community, the anxieties and apprehensiveness suffered, began to dramatically ebb as multiple key arrests were made due to community involvement, ending that particular dangerous situation.
Because of this cooperative effort, we did reduce crime in calendar year 2012 (the first decrease in three years) and as I write this message, we have reduced crime thus far year to date. Not only did we achieve this most welcomed crime reduction, but also there were no homicides reported in 2012 and none thus far in calendar year 2013! Shootings have also been reduced in our community as we have only suffered one this entire year, the last one occurring on November 19th, 2012! I can’t help but feel that we have all been through so much and have grown well together as a community. The trials and tribulations we have endured during my tenure here have proven conclusively to me that cooperation between the community and the police can be effectively achieved. This reaffirms my belief that the community has a big part to play in the NYPD’s crime and terror fighting strategies.
Lastly, I leave you all in good hands as Captain Justin Lenz takes over from me. I have heard a great many good things about him. Since he has been assigned to the 76th Precinct by the powers that be, then we all can believe that he will do a fantastic job addressing the community’s needs! I thank you all for your patience, understanding, and cooperation as I move on to new challenges in my career! And remember, please be safe by being aware of your surroundings!
Commanding Officer, 76th Precinct
191 Union Street Brooklyn, NY 11231