Monday, August 6, 2007

PS 230 - Unlocked gate draws nightly crowd and vandalism

Another from the inbox....

Ever since they installed the basketball hoops in the Albemarle Playground (shares lot w PS 230) there are people playing in the park at all hours. My husband is kind of an insomniac and he says most nights there are people in the park until around 3 in the morning. Some times its only a couple of guys playing a game that is fairly quiet and other nights it’s a group of people playing quite loudly. I don’t know if the cops ever go by that park and kick people out. I have never seen that happen. I also have not been calling the police or the 311 b/c I know 311 will just tell me to call the police and I know the 66th is not the most responsive precinct. The last time I called them about something I found the officers were extremely rude to me and basically told me they didn’t want to be bothered unless it was a serious crime. Since then I have been extremely reluctant to call the police.

Also before they did the renovation on the schoolyard they had an emergency meeting with people from the community, Brooklyn Deputy Commissioner from the parks departments, deblasio’s office and some representatives from the 66th precinct. One of the MAIN concerns people had was that the park would be used like this if the basketball courts were installed. The police assured the people at the meeting, and my husband personally, that they would patrol the park to make sure this wasn’t an issue.

I have had several neighbors tell me they also hear the same noise but I don’t know if any of them are calling 311 or the police, my feeling is that they are not. I plan to start calling the police and being as annoying as possible but thought you could post this to get some feedback on the course of action I should take.

So, does anyone have experiences like this at their local playground? We know the Friends of Greenwood coordinated with the parks department to have a local neighbor have a key to lock the park in case of issues like this....

Here are some of our thoughts. First, you must report this to the 66. This is a quality of life issue and should be taken seriously. If it is not then you can contact the Community Affairs Unit at (718) 851-5601 or Special Operations Officer, Lieutenant Selleck at (718) 851-5637. The CA would be your first go to if your complaint is ignored. Lieutenant Selleck directly oversees the units that are responsible for correcting many of the issues written about on the blog (like the unlicensed vehicle issue etc.). Secondly, this issue must be brought to the attention of local Representatives (i.e. Bill de Blasio or Jim Brennan). A park without lights and security is a breeding ground for illegal activity. This should certainly become a priority to local police and representatives. Finally we would suggest joining the local Dahill Neighborhood Association and attending the meetings with your neighbors. While we've found that a single complaint is shrugged off when many people make the same complaint it is heard. If none of this works take some video and send it here for posting... if it still doesn't get a response well at least we're maintaining our nancy drew/provinical vigilante-ness!