Index crime is down this past Thanksgiving week by 7.2%, reports the NYPD. Headlining the recent public safety news is the dramatic East Harlem rescue of a man stuck on subway tracks moments before an incoming train by police officers.
“We honor Officers Taufique Bokth and Brunel Victor,” said Mayor Eric Adams. “They embody the values of courage, caring, and compassion. And patrolling our subway system can be a challenging job. I know it far too well, because I did it for many years. But on Thanksgiving Day, a man experiencing homelessness felt dizzy and fell onto the subway tracks. Both Officer Bokth and Victor, who are proud members of New York City’s 25th precinct, did not hesitate to take action.”
He credited the “blue surge” at stations propelled by a surge of transit-related crime throughout the city last month. The two officers were present due to the increased police presence initiatives. But the NYPD union Police Benevolent Association felt the rescue happened despite the added uniforms to subway platforms.
“Police Officers Victor and Bokth deserve far more than praise for their heroism,” said PBA President Pat Lynch in a statement. “Like all New York City police officers, they are overworked and underpaid. They deserve a competitive salary that will reverse the current NYPD staffing emergency. Press conferences and mayoral proclamations will not stop cops from quitting in droves.
“If our city doesn’t immediately fix our low pay and brutal work schedule, there may not be a hero police officer available to help the next time a New Yorker is in distress in the subway.”
While overall gun violence was down this past holiday week, homicides were up by one, including two shooting deaths in the Bronx on Thanksgiving Day. Additionally, another fatal gunshot victim was found unresponsive just minutes before the holiday’s start in Queens. Also on Thanksgiving Day in the Bronx, a 14-year-old girl was struck by a stray bullet. She is reportedly in stable condition.
Over the weekend, a 22-year-old Bronx mother was arrested and charged for murder after her two toddlers were found dead with multiple stab wounds.
Before the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Adams and Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell announced the NYPD found no credible threats to the annual march to Herald Square. But NYPD Chief of Counterterrorism Martine Materasso announced department resources were deployed over the week’s festivities due to recent events like the Club Q shooting in Colorado Springs and online threats recently made against the Jewish community.
Tandy Lau is a Report for America corps member and writes about public safety for the Amsterdam News. Your donation to match our RFA grant helps keep him writing stories like this one; please consider making a tax-deductible gift of any amount today by visiting: https://bit.ly/amnews1