BY SCOTT STIFFLER | Members of the general public with questions and opinions about the current state of crime and the overall quality of life in Chelsea–and that’s a lot of you–have two types of recurring opportunities to take those concerns to local NYPD leadership.
Build the Block meetings are official NYPD events typically hosted by NCOs, or Neighborhood Coordination Officers. Precincts are divided into areas of coverage called “Sectors” and each Sector is assigned two NCOs. Each sector has a Build the Block Neighborhood Safety Meeting meeting four times a year. Held either online or in person, the general public is encouraged to attend and pose questions to the NCOs. Outside of this opportunity to get to know your NCOs, that team is assigned hours every week during which they’re expected to travel within their sector and maintain or establish good relations with locals. Click here to locate a meeting in your neighborhood.
And what should one expect from a Community Council meeting? Organized by civilians who work alongside members of the NYPD to further relations with the public, Community Council members might be found taking out a table at their local Street Fair or participating, even organizing, their precinct’s participation in National Night Out Against Crime. Most Councils cement their identity via a lone marquee event: The monthly Community Council meeting. Like their Build a Block counterparts, a Council meeting is a reliable source of hearing about the latest crime trends and statistics. It’s also common practice for the meeting’s backbone–an anything-goes Q&A Session–to be presided over by top NYPD precinct leadership, usually the Commanding Officer (that’s Captain Robert Gault, at the 10th Precinct). As for how they roll at the 13th, read on, directly below.
The 13th Precinct Community Council Met on Tuesday, October 18, 6pm via Zoom | This citizen-run Council (normally taking place in the evening, third Tuesday of the month) invites you to discuss any ongoing public safety and quality-of-life issues within the 13th Precinct, and asks that you direct questions prior to the meeting to Detective Vincent Arlotta, via this email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions submitted in this manner will be answered first. The meeting is hosted and moderated by 13th Precinct Community Council President Serge Harnett. Frequently in attendance, to respond to questions, is the 13th Precinct’s Commanding Officer, Deputy Inspector Angel L Figueroa Jr.
For the 13th Precinct’s web page, click here to access general info, find the next Build the Block meeting in one of the Precinct’s four Sectors (A, B, C, D), and download the latest Crime Statistics in PDF or Excel format. Note: The 13th Precinct serves a southern portion of Midtown, Manhattan. Areas of coverage: The Peter Cooper Village/Stuyvesant Town residential complex, Gramercy Park, the lower portion of Rosehill, Madison Square Park, and Union Square Park. Located at 230 E. 21st Street, the precinct’s main phone number is 212-477-7427. The next Council meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, November 15. There will be no December meeting, and the monthly schedule will resume on January 17, 2023.
The 10th Precinct Sector A Build the Block Meeting: Thursday, October 20, 3pm at Jungle Bird (174 Eighth Ave. btw. W. 18th & 19th Status.). Note, this new info replaces the previously announced venue, Joyce Theater, and time, 6pm). | Sector A’s area of coverage is W. 14th St. to W. 21st St., Seventh Ave. to the Hudson. The NCOs are PO William Lleras (email@example.com) and PO Taimoor Ahmad (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The 10th Precinct Sector B Build the Block Meeting: Wednesday, November 30, 6pm at Fashion High School (225 W. 24th St. btw. Seventh & Eighth Aves.). | Sector B’s area of coverage is the north side of W. 21st St. to south side of W. 29th St., from Seventh Ave. to the Hudson. The NCOs are PO Dylan Darnaud (email@example.com) and PO Daniel Bavuso (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Note: The fourth and final quarterly Sector C Build the Block meeting of 2022 took place on September 29 via Zoom. Sector C’s area of coverage is W. 29th St. to W. 43rd St., Ninth Ave. to the Hudson. The NCOs are PO Marian Bencea (marian.bencea@NYPD.org) and Det. Daniel Sendrowski (daniel.sendrowski@NYPD.org).
Build the Block meeting times, dates, and locations are subject to change. Within 24 hours of a scheduled event, it is suggested that those planning to attend place a call to their local precinct, and speak to an NCO or Community Affairs Officer to verify previously announced when/where info.
The 13th Precinct Sector A Build the Block meeting: Thursday, November 3, 4:30pm at Stuyvesant Town Community Center (449 E. 14th St.) The NCOs are PO William Farley (email@example.com) and PO Ryan Malvagna (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The 13th Precinct Sector B Build the Block meeting: Thursday, December 1, 5:30pm at Barn Joo (35 Union Square West). The NCOs are PO Christopher Keeley (email@example.com) and PO Marisa Gonzalez (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The 13th Precinct Sector C Build the Block meeting: Tuesday, December 6, 5:30pm at Somewhere Nowhere (112 W. 25th St.). The NCOs are PO Eric Demery (email@example.com) and PO Douglas Winn (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The 13th Precinct Sector D Build the Block meeting: Thursday, November 3, 5:30pm at Remnant Church (206 E. 29th St.). The NCOs are PO William Cannata (email@example.com) and PO Edward Griffin (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The 10th Precinct Community Council meeting: Wednesday, October 26 at 7pm, via Zoom | As of last month’s return from their annual June-August summer hiatus, the 10th Precinct Community Council is back to its regularly scheduled meetings–at 7pm, on the last Wednesday of the month. September’s season opener took place at a Community Room in Penn south, the first brick and mortar Council meet-up in almost two years. On October 26, Community Council President Larry O’Neill moves the proceedings back online–not because of COVID, but because, he told Chelsea Community News, the Zoom format that began as a public safety necessity had proven itself over time to be, in a word, “Convenient.”
Proving his point, as you may be aware by now, attending a Zoom meeting requires no time-consuming schlep across town. Just place yourself in front of a suitable electronic device and do the following: Click on this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81944531525?pwd=TlljYTdNL3Azbzg0ZnI4dlVkY0tYQT09 and, when prompted, enter the Meeting ID (819 4453 1525) and the Passcode (150959). Between monthly meetings, keep your eyes on the Council’s Facebook page, where announcements will be made regarding Council activities. To visit and follow that page, click here. As for what to expect on Oct. 26, the structure varies very little, whether it’s only or in a room with four walls: Council President O’Neill serves as host and moderator throughout, and wastes no time handing over the proceedings to, more often than not, the 10th Precinct’s Commanding Officer, Captain Robert Gault. At that point, expect Gault to give an overview of local crime stats—how they stack up against last month’s figures, year-to-date, and in comparison to where we stood last year at this time. The overview dovetails nicely into the marrow of the meeting: An anything-goes Q&A session with O’Neill fielding questions, Gault providing answers–or explanations, or analysis, or a pledge to look into a situation and course correct as best one can. Regular attendees will tell you that the following month’s meeting always arrives with the opportunity to measure progress made against reassurances given. But accountability works both ways–meaning the general citizenry often has an active role to play to ensure good policing meets great expectations.
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