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Police: Violent, Property Crimes Trending Up

There were eight robberies reported in the first nine months of this year, compared to six during the same period in 2011. There have also been more reports of aggravated assaults, drug arrests and shoplifting incidents, according to police stats.

Crime has trended up in Peekskill during the first nine months of 2012.

But city officials say that it is far too early to determine if the spike in numbers is just a blip or an ominous sign of things to come.

Through nine months, crime this year has increased by 30 percent compared to the same point in 2011, according to a memo submitted by Lt. Eric Johansen of the Peekskill city police department. A PDF of that memo is attached to this story.

“From an overall perspective, statistics taken out of context can be misunderstood,” Peekskill Mayor Mary Foster said. “Peekskill is safe and our police force is diligently attacking quality of life infractions. While this is not dangerous crime, the numbers of arrests on infractions prevents dangerous crime from happening. So while the number of arrests increases, it reduces neighborhood concerns and improves overall safety.”

Part I crimes, which are the more serious crimes listed in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Report, increased by 12 percent. Part I crimes include murder and nonnegligent homicide, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft, larceny-theft, and arson.

Part II crimes increased in the city by 39 percent. Part II crimes include offenses such as simple assault, vandalism, fraud, embezzlement, prostitution and drug offenses.

Violent crimes like rape, robbery and aggravated assault have increased by 32 percent and property crimes, like burglary and larceny, have increased by 10 percent.

“The violent crime increase can be attributed to increases in robberies in 2012 (6 in 201 1 vs. 8 in 2012) and Aggravated Assaults (14 in 2011 vs. 19 in 2012),” the memo states. “Furthermore, the 10 percent property crime increase is due primarily to the increase in incidents of shoplifting at the Stop and Shop and Walgreens stores where through the third quarter of 2011 there was seven compared with 38 thus far in 2012.”

Johansen said the police department began implementing anti-crime patrols in July and those patrols have resulted in more quality of life arrests. Police have made 94 more marijuana and 23 more controlled substance arrests at this point of the year then they made at the same time last year.

“This approach to crime prevention has historically suppressed major criminal
activity under the theory that those arrested for minor offenses are unable to commit or become victims of other criminal offenses,” the memo states.

Peekskill police Chief Eugene Tumolo said the community is much safer than it was a decade ago, when gun violence was more prevalent.

“The streets are much calmer and much safer when you ride through Peekskill,” Tumolo said. “You don’t see the loitering on the corners and it is a much safer, much more inviting environment.”

Tumolo also said many of the crimes can be prevented with more education. For instance, he said there have been a lot of theft-related crimes that were the result of people not locking their doors or securing their personal belongings in an adequate manner.

He also said some of the new businesses in the area are more proactive and effective in stopping thefts. Those arrests have also added to the crime numbers.

Tumolo said his department will continue to study the figures and respond as needed.

A list of index crimes reported to Peekskill police from 2007 to 2011 is available in the secondary photo attached to this story.

Silent Majority October 09, 2012 at 11:08 AM
And "gang" related crimes? ....Think guns are just here and kids are toying around? Dont give me the "Gang Mentality" twist either. Leave that for Chubby Checker.
jo October 09, 2012 at 11:57 AM
I dated a corrections officer a few years back.. he commented on the "Crime" in Peekskill was not being reported to the public... guess he knew what he was talking about..and he did mention it was very much Gang related..
Noreen Kelly October 09, 2012 at 12:35 PM
With these statistics coming to light, Mary Foster still wants to cut the police force in her budget plan.
Willie Bobo October 09, 2012 at 12:54 PM
What a field day for the heat A thousand bangers in the street Clean this mess up or we'll all end up in jail The test tube and the scale Just get it all out of here
sayitsnotsojack October 09, 2012 at 01:19 PM
Forster and company is now taking bids for another consultant to look into this.
joshua tanner October 09, 2012 at 01:58 PM
People have been concerned about escalating crime for months. No doubt the Mayor and police are using the quick murder bust as a good time to try and assuage concerns. I wont be distracted from what I see going on around me. I can't remember the last robbery in my hood and now I have 2 knife robberies, a stabbing and gunshots - and the mailman was beat up and sent to the hospital. A problem is small issues aren't addressed and that sends the wrong signal. I see piles of garbage right next to signs warning about fines for littering. People know its a joke. Kids have been allowed to stay late in the park and even to jump the fence of the pool (no surpsise to me a kid died this year - I called police twice last summer about kids jumping fence and got a ho-humm "its hot and kids just want to cool off" attitude). Then a kid who commits two knife robberies in a few days times gets off on 2k bail from city court. To gang members from NYC, Yonkers etc Peekskill looks like easy street. I really get concerned about Peekskill turning into Newburgh.
notsurprisedonebit October 09, 2012 at 05:53 PM
Another banner statistic for Mary and her merry band of followers. I have called the police numerous times about underage drinking parties, drugs, people having sex on my block (including when the cops showed up and did nothing about it), and they just shrug it off like nothing is wrong. I see police cars parked at private homes when they are on duty. It's also a joke that there is an officer patrolling the parking lot at the Train Station so that people don't get dropped off in front and Mary and Ruth Wells can get to their parking spots without people in front of them, even though taxis are allowed to drop people off and there is a clear sign that says it is "Not a Drop Off Area". There is a no left turn sign from Railroad Ave. into RIverfront Green from 5-7PM, with a cop sitting by the train station and cars continue to turn left even though they are seen and nothing is done. There is constantly police sitting on Water St. under the bridge talking to each other, etc. Is it a real surprise that crime numbers have gone up?
enoughalready October 09, 2012 at 07:05 PM
I've never not had an officer respond when I called for anything and it sounds like you haven't either. Showing up and moving people along is doing something and not everything is a crime that people end up in cuffs. I do love how she spins the statistics. Simple assault? Not so simple if your the victim. I ran into a firefighter this morning and asked him about their concerns. I have to say he was very professional and now talking to him I know why we haven't heard a peep from them. I can't believe that for the scope of Peekskill there isn't a professional fire chief. He's a volunteer. How do we have no professional leadership for our agencies? The guy pointed out on a call who was there. No chiefs and 1 old volunteer directing traffic. On top they do medical calls and apparently the ambulance corps is struggling as well. Yet the city gives them $75,000 + for a paid person during day hours but yet they bill. Seriously? This is a professional city? No loss of essential services? I'd call fire and medical response a priority and cutting staffing will apparently cause a reduction in medical response for the fire department. Arrests are up. How long when manning on the street drops. Raise my taxes, ill keep the firemen and cops. We are only paying for the queen and her court who mortgaged their political future with no tax increases all these years. I was never for them as you always pay for them in the end. Maybe I should be a consultant and make my tax $$ back.
ED HICKEY October 10, 2012 at 02:28 AM
To begin, let's all candidly share our personal opinions, observations, and experiences though remain objective and able to collectively offer feedback which steers clear of political bipartisanship and alternate agendas. The overall increase in crime in Peekskill, as shown clearly by the "raw" numbers of occurences, in my opinion, represents two major considerations: 1.) The types of crimes that have increased are those associated, by history, in longstanding economic crisis. The state of our local economy parralels that of the county, the state ("functionally bankrupt"-Governor Cuomo), and the nation as a whole. The "pool" of perpetrators has grown to include many who wouldn't consider these types of crimes in a stable economy ... ie: shoplifting, bank robbery, home invasion, etc. 2.) Compounding this concept is that during times as these, many turn to substance abuse, including excessive ETOH; again, historically the trends I am noting are documented. During recessions ... market corrections, or financial collapses, crime increases as does the illegal drug market and those associated with it's distribution whether you call them mobsters, gangsters, or organized crime. Mayor Foster's initial response to the statistics representing increased occurence of overall crime in the first 9 months of 2012 vs. crime in 2011, is arguably valid/correct. Now, hang your emotions on a hook for a moment as I explain.
ED HICKEY October 10, 2012 at 02:50 AM
Statistical "significance" has a very specific definition, and it is because of this fact and the general nature of how statistics can be used or misused to support or contest any "agenda" that Mayor Foster cannot be judged by her commentary. Lastly, statistics show only part of the real life picture ... PEEKSKILL DOES NOT EXIST IN A VACUUM! Compare our city vs. many of the neighboring hamlets/cities; maybe, indeed, crime in Peekskill hasn't increased parralel to that of surrounding communities. Does this not reflect possibly exemplary and consistent police work? Why in times like these would any public official or group thereof consider decreasing the overall number of officers when, in my opinion, it is grotesquely obvious that the work consistently done as a whole by our Peekskill Police has kept our community from being able to display a marked "statistically significant" increase in crime! One only needs to watch/hear/know what is happening in neighboring communities. Newburgh? Yeah, despite Newburgh police joining forces at times with the Orange County Police to patrol, and make a few very large "busts", it is plagued with multiple gangs fighting for streets to sell the large influx of many illegal drugs. Yonkers?!? Need I say more? It would be irresponsible to allow ANY cuts to our Peekskill Police Department. The consequences would be statistically significant ... TRAGIC!
Areyouserious October 10, 2012 at 02:59 AM
It was hard for me to believe that the city of Peekskill had so many crimes. So I sat in court one day to observe. I was shocked to see the large number of assaults, burglaries and robberies as well as drug related offenses in Peekskill. Do the same and educate yourself about the crime in Peekskill. These crimes are not reported to the public because the authorities do not want to give Peekskill a bad name. As far as services provided - I cant complaint, the few times that I have called for police assistance I have received curteous, professional assistance in a timely manner.
steven sniffen October 10, 2012 at 11:32 AM
Enough already do u want to pay for a professional fire chief because if so I betray foster will like if u want to pay for it it's been like this for a very long time I don't know where u have been
RealTimeRufus October 10, 2012 at 12:48 PM
Culture is everything. If your culture encourages greed, entitlement, laziness, irresponsibility, dishonesty, corruption and lack of order, don't be surprised with the results. You reap what you sow. Cultures that promote the opposite of those values succeed. This isn't new. It's as old as the Scripture and has been proven time and time again. Rome succeeded when its people and leaders had core values and could think beyond themselves; it collapsed when it forgot those values. Same story here. R.I.P. America, you did it to yourself. "Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder" - Toynbee "Just as every copy is a criminal and all the sinners saints" - Jagger "My God, what have I done" - Byrne/Guinness "Sit down man, you're a bloody tragedy" - MP to Macdonald "We blew it" - Fonda
ED HICKEY October 10, 2012 at 02:02 PM
Rufus? Amen! As frightening as your commentary is, it is equally as accurate to our nation's decline. I'm not ready to throw in the towel and only because I believe there remains a population that understands as you do, and agree as we do. One of the final stages of collapse is anarchy and lawlessness ... some areas of this nation will endure though in my opinion. Weschester County could be the model for your commentary; Peekskill has a community of some deep roots ... of people that hold concepts of sacrifice and "do onto others". I just hope and pray that the necassary slashing ahead, chooses our exceptional police department last; there are many genuine men and women that dedicate all of who they are to serve and protect with the intent of maintaining law and order as many have known it here.
Collegenurse October 11, 2012 at 01:58 PM
I have been living in Peekskill for the past 12 years, actually came because the availability of homes under 200k...with the prospects of a "rivertown" becoming something...sadly this has not happened and in fact it has just gone down hill. We have worked on a lovely home built at the turn of the century with charm and beauty. Unfortunately, we will move on in the next few years due to the increase crime. I have called the police on numerous occasions for suspected drug activity in my neighborhood, I am tried of picking up garbage left on the sidewalks and the amount of run down, abandoned homes, section 8 homes that are occupied by familys that do not care are too numerous. To get through the next few years we are getting a german shephard and/or alarms on our home...so sad..lived all my life in Westchester and never even locked my front door.
leesther brown October 11, 2012 at 02:40 PM
Now that's Real....
Awilda Laboy October 17, 2012 at 12:23 AM
Culture is not everything. We're blessed to have many diverse cultures and I've been blessed to associate with so many cultures in my own lifetime. All the cultures I associate with teach their children values such as self respect, helping those in need even though they don't have much themselves, honesty, and integrity.

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