Tag Archives: stop and frisk

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Friday: Clear. High of 77. Winds from the SSW at 5 to 15 mph. Friday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 64. Winds from the South at 5 to 10 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Viva la Comida!

Viva la Comida!, an outdoor festival in Jackson Heights from 4 to 10 p.m., combines the best food trucks in the city, live music, interactive art, dancing, a market and more. Free to attend. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

EMTs stole $320,000 from ambulance nonprofit: prosecutors

Three volunteer EMTs pumped more than $320,000 from a nonprofit Queens ambulance corps into their own bank accounts, prosecutors say. Read more: NBC New York

Cops: Ga.-to-NYC gun scheme used pie tins, mail

Packing guns in pie tins and socks, a Georgia man supplied more than a dozen illegal weapons for sale in New York simply by sending them via express mail, police and prosecutors said Thursday. Read more: AP

City councilman proposes measure to halt ‘crazy’ cost of runoff elections

A New York City Councilman has proposed doing away with pricey runoff elections. Read more: CBS New York

Sources: Shootings up in New York City since stop-and-frisk ruling

There has been a spike in shootings across New York City since a federal judge ruled against the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk program, according to new crime statistics. Read more: CBS New York

Pope: Obsession with gays, abortion hurting church

Pope Francis has warned that the Catholic Church’s moral structure might “fall like a house of cards” if it doesn’t balance its divisive rules about abortion, gays and contraception with the greater need to make it a merciful, more welcoming place for all. Read more: NBC New York

 

 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Wednesday: Clear in the morning, then partly cloudy. High of 79. Winds from the WNW at 10 to 15 mph. Wednesday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 68. Winds from the West at 5 to 15 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Good Ol’ Freda

Come to a preview screening and discussion of the new Beatles documentary “Good Ol’ Freda” with the subject Freda Kelly and director Ryan White at the Museum of the Moving Image on Wednesday, September 4 at 7 p.m. Freda Kelly was just a shy Liverpool teenager when she was asked to work for a local band hoping to make it big. In the documentary, Kelly, who was The Beatles’ devoted secretary for 11 years, tells her stories for the first time in five decades. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Final New York City mayoral debate focuses on front-runner

At 6-foot-5, New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio presented a big target for his Democratic rivals to hurl attacks at during the final debate a week ahead of the mayoral primary. Read more: AP

Bloomberg sues over law easing suits vs. police

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is suing to try to block a law that would make it easier to sue the police department over stop & frisks or other actions people claim are discriminatory. Read more: AP

FEMA extends hotel stays for New York Sandy victims

Federal authorities have extended the amount of time New Yorkers can stay in hotels or motels if they can’t return to their homes because of damage from Sandy. Read more: NBC New York

Court officers’ union sues over defective body armor

They could be saving lives — if they were only tailored properly. Read more: New York Daily News 

Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro found dead in cell

The man serving a life prison term for kidnapping three women and repeatedly raping them in his home for nearly a decade has been found dead and is believed to have committed suicide, a prison official said. Read more: NBC News

Fresh Meadows man recounts stop-and-frisk experience


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Naji Grampus

Fresh Meadows resident Naji Grampus claims he was stopped by cops one night while walking home from playing basketball in a playground near P.S. 26 in the fall of 2010.

It was chilly, so Grampus, then 21, was wearing a hoodie and his gloves were bundled in the pouch of the sweater. Grampus, who is black, was walking with two white friends, but the officers directed their questions only to him, he said.

“Where are you going?” Grampus recalled one of three officers asking. “What’s in your pocket?”

Grampus and his friends said they were headed home, but the officers got out their vehicle and allegedly proceeded to frisk him alone.

“He frisked me, not them,” Grampus said. “I believe I was racially profiled, because I had a bulge in my pocket. But a bulge doesn’t look like a gun.”

U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin agreed with Grampus and minority groups’ view when she ruled last week that the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk policy is being used unconstitutionally by overly targeting blacks and Hispanics.

In 2012 police stopped nearly 533,000 people, but approximately 473,644 or 89 percent, were innocent, according to the New York Civil Liberties Union. Of those stopped 284,229 were black (55 percent), 165,140 were Latino (32 percent) and 50,366 were white (10 percent).

“It feels like they are playing the law of averages,” Grampus said. “If I stop 100 [minorities] maybe one will have something.”

Grampus was a junior in Baruch College then and is now a community liaison for Councilmember Mark Weprin, who has voiced concern over stop-and-frisk.

Grampus thinks the policy should be reformed, not discontinued, as does Scheindlin.

As part of her decision, Scheindlin appointed a monitor over the NYPD and body cameras for police officers in some precincts in her decision.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg was displeased with the ruling and the city filed to appeal the decision. Bloomberg instead referred to stats that show last year the city had the fewest shootings and murders since records began being kept in 1962.

Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly then touted stop-and-frisk as a reason that selling illegal weapons in the city was more difficult after the pair announced “the largest seizure of illegal guns in city history” on Monday, August 19.

Cops recovered 254 firearms and indicted 19 people. One of the men arrested was heard saying said he couldn’t bring the weapons to Brooklyn because of stop-and-frisk, according to police.

This was rebuffed by various supporters of stop-and-frisk reformers.

“We applaud the city’s record gun bust, but we are nonetheless outraged that the mayor is using it as a scare tactic to justify the unconstitutional stop-and-frisk police tactic,” said

Comptroller John Liu, a mayoral candidate. “Stopping and frisking innocent New Yorkers never has been, never is, and never will be the answer.”

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST 

Monday: Overcast with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain in the afternoon. High of 79. Winds from the WSW at 5 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 20%. Monday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 70F. Winds from the West at 5 to 10 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: “Annie” at Astoria Park

The Central Astoria LDC presents “Annie” as part of its Monday night outdoor film series. The free screening starts at 8:30 p.m. at Astoria Park. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Cops searching for Sunnyside arson suspect

Police are looking for a suspect who allegedly set a car on fire in Sunnyside. Read more: The Queens Courier

Interracial couple attacked as they leave Queens bar

An interracial couple leaving a Queens bar were attacked by three men who shouted racial and ethnic slurs at them, police said. Read more: New York Daily News

Woodside, Queens crash leaves 2 people injured

Two people were injured Sunday afternoon when a vehicle slammed into a building in Woodside, Queens. Read more: CBS New York

Police hunt for driver who hit officer in Queens

Police were searching Sunday evening for a hit-and-run driver who slammed into an officer in Queens. Read more: CBS New York

Stop-frisk ruling will hurt minorities, Ray Kelly says

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly assailed a federal judge’s finding of racial discrimination and demand for changes to his department’s stop and frisk practice, telling a Sunday news show that minority communities will be “the losers” if the ruling isn’t overturned. Read more: AP

 

 

City files to appeal stop-and-frisk ruling


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

NYC Mayor's Office's Flickr/Photo by Edward Reed

The city has filed to appeal U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin’s ruling that the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk policy is unconstitutional.

The appeal comes after Mayor Michael Bloomberg expressed his dislike for the decision on Monday and promised the city would fight the ruling in the case of Floyd vs City of New York. The appeal was filed electronically Friday with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, which will send the appeal to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

“We have moved ahead with our formal filings,”  said Michael Cardozo, Corporation Counsel. “The mayor, the police commissioner and the city vowed to press forward immediately with an appeal — and we have done so. The safety of all New Yorkers is at stake.”

Minorities groups and some politicians have been fighting the policy, saying that stop-and-frisk is unfairly used against black and Hispanics. They have since applauded Schedindlin’s ruling and denounced the decision to appeal it.

“The overuse and abuse of stop-and-frisk is driving police and communities apart instead of making our city safer,” said Public Advocate Bill de Blasio. “Mayor Bloomberg’s decision to appeal the federal court’s ruling is wrong and deeply misguided.”

In Scheindlin’s decision on Monday she suggested reforms to stop-and-frisk. She appointed lawyer Peter Zimroth to monitor the NYPD and ordered that officers wear body cameras.

“I find that the city is liable for violating plaintiffs’ Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment rights,” Scheindlin wrote. “The city acted with deliberate indifference toward the NYPD’s practice of making unconstitutional stops and conducting unconstitutional frisks.”

During a press conference after Scheindlin’s decision, Bloomberg said that the judge’s ruling was unfair.

“Throughout the trail that just concluded the judge made it clear that she was not at all interested in the crime reductions here [(in the city] or how we achieved them,” Bloomberg said.  “Through the case we didn’t believe that we were getting a fair trial and this decision confirms that suspicion,” he later added.

The city is going to request a “stay” before Scheindlin, to postpone her judgement during the appeals process.

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Judge rules NYPD’s stop-and-frisk policy unconstitutional


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/ Photo by Liam La Guerre

Score another win for opponents of the NYPD’s controversial stop-and-frisk policy.

U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin ruled Monday that the police department’s use of the policy is unconstitutional and suggested the appointment of a monitor to reform it.

“I find that the city is liable for violating plaintiffs’ Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment rights,” Scheindlin wrote. “The city acted with deliberate indifference toward the NYPD’s practice of making unconstitutional stops and conducting unconstitutional frisks.”

The ruling comes months after the City Council approved the Community Safety Act, which contained a bill to easy it easier to take the NYPD to court over discrimination cases. Mayor Michael Bloomberg vetoed the Community Safety Act a few weeks ago and criticized Scheindlin’s decision.

“Throughout the trail that just concluded the judge made it clear that she was not at all interested in the crime reductions here (in the city) or how we achieved them,” Bloomberg said at a press conference today.

He later added, “Through the case we didn’t believe that we were getting a fair trial and this decision confirms that suspicion.”

Minorities groups have been fighting the policy, saying that stop-and-frisk is unfairly used against black and Hispanics. Scheindlin confirmed this belief with her judgment.

“In practice, the policy encourages the targeting of young black and Hispanic men based on their prevalence in local crime complaints,” Scheindlin wrote. “This is a form of racial profiling.”

Scheindlin didn’t rule to dispatch the policy completely, but just to reform it.

“The opinion does not call for the NYPD to abandon proactive policing and return to an era of less effective police practices,” Scheindlin said.

Proponents of stop-and-frisk disagreed with Scheindlin’s ruling and called the decision to add a monitor to the program unnecessary.

“The NYPD does not need an additional monitor,” said Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr, although he did agree though that the policy should be reformed. “We can agree on that and move forward to continue reform stop-and-risk but make sure that continues to happen so that we save young lives.”

Opponents of the stop-and-frisk policy are embracing the ruling whole-heartedly.

“The ruling issued by Judge Scheindlin only confirms what so many New Yorkers already know, that the way stop, question, and frisk has been implemented is a violation of people’s constitutional rights,” said Councilmember Leroy Comrie. “The public wants the police to keep them safe, and the reforms mandated by this ruling will help hold the NYPD accountable, while also forcing changes to policies that will build a stronger relationship between precincts and the communities they are trying to protect.”

Bloomberg said they city will appeal the decision.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Thursday: Overcast with thunderstorms and rain showers. High of 84. Winds from the SSW at 5 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 60%. Thursday night: Overcast with thunderstorms and rain showers. Low of 75. Winds from the South at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 60% with rainfall amounts near 0.4 in. possible.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Waterfront Concert Series 2013

The cover band Bon Journey will play Bon Jovi and Journey songs on the Astoria Park Lawn at 7:30 p.m. as part of a weekly series sponsored by Central Astoria LDC. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Teen arrested in sex assault of four-year-old girl at Jamaica McDonald’s

Police have arrested a 14-year-old for the sexual assault of a young girl at a Jamaica McDonald’s. Read more: The Queens Courier

Parks Department seeking designs for a new Rockaway boardwalk

Rockaway residents are stepping closer to seeing their boardwalk rebuilt. Read more: New York Daily News

Under agreement, NYPD to stop storing names of those stopped and frisked

City officials will no longer store the names and addresses of people whose cases are dismissed after a police stop under an agreement that settles a lawsuit over the stop-and-frisk issue. Read more: CBS New York/AP 

Body of dolphin washes ashore at Rockaway Beach

A badly decomposed dolphin washed ashore on Rockaway Beach Wednesday morning. Read more: New York Daily News

Powerball luck strikes 3 times in 2 states

At least three people in two states have beaten astronomical odds to become the nation’s latest Powerball millionaires. Read more: AP

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST 

Monday: Partly cloudy. High of 84. Winds from the NW at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the WSW in the afternoon. Monday night: Partly cloudy in the evening, then clear. Low of 68. Winds from the West at 5 to 15 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: From Mr. Chips to Scarface: Walter White’s Transformation in “Breaking Bad”

Now through October 27, the Museum of the Moving Image presents “From Mr. Chips to Scarface: Walter White’s Transformation in ‘Breaking Bad’” in the museum’s main exhibition, “Behind the Screen.” The exhibit looks at how Breaking Bad’s’ filmmakers used a variety of visual cues to convey Walter White’s transformation. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Workers begin strikes at fast-food restaurants

Thousands of fast food workers are expected to walk off the job Monday morning as part of an historic labor strike. Read more: ABC New York

NYPD to restart gun buyback program with 10 events across the city

New Yorkers with guns will soon have more ways to make a quick buck. Read more: New York Daily News

Gov Cuomo signs law making drunk driving felony on conditional licenses

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed a new law meant to keep more drunken drivers off New York roads. Read more: AP

Adequate public notice of sewage spills into New York waterways lacking: study

Yuck! Billions of gallons of untreated raw sewage is flowing into New York waterways annually, but the system of warning the public in a timely fashion is what really smells. Read more: New York Daily News 

Report: Thompson calls stop and frisk institutionalized bias

Mayoral candidate Bill Thompson said Trayvon Martin was killed because he was black and that the same bias drives the NYPD’s stop and frisk policy. Read more: AP

Schumer: Tracking shoppers through phones invasive

Sen. Charles Schumer says federal authorities should regulate the practice of retailers using shoppers’ smartphones to track their movement through a store. Read more: NBC New York

 

Mayor: Police stop too many whites, not enough minorities


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NYC Mayor's Office Flickr /Photo by Spencer T Tucker

Mayor Michael Bloomberg answered critics of the city’s controversial stop-and-frisk policy by saying the NYPD doesn’t stop enough people of color and stops too many whites.

Less than one day after the City Council approved major legislation to change up management of the police department against the mayor’s wishes, Bloomberg made the controversial remark about the stop-and-frisk policy on his morning radio show on June 28.

“One newspaper and one news service, they just keep saying, ‘Oh it’s a disproportionate percentage of a particular ethnic group.’ That may be, but it’s not a disproportionate percentage of those who witnesses and victims describe as committing the murders,” Bloomberg said referring to crime statistics that show the police stop much more minorities than whites.

He added, “In that case, incidentally, I think, we disproportionately stop whites too much and minorities too little. It’s exactly the reverse of what they’re saying. I don’t know where they went to school, but they certainly didn’t take a math course, or a logic course.”

Some mayoral candidates already criticized Bloomberg’s comments.

“To turn around after communities in the city of New York– black and Latino communities– that the inappropriate use, the improper use, the misuse of stop-and-frisk that has caused so much pain and so many problems and then to turn around and say ‘I’m sorry I didn’t stop enough people’– that’s the outrageous part,” said Bill Thompson, the only black candidate running for mayor. “His comments weren’t worthy of any elected official, much less the mayor of the city of New York.”

The City Council passed the Community Safety Act on Thursday. The legislation has two bills, one that creates an inspector general to oversee the police department with the commissioner, and the other which makes it easier for people to sue the police over racial profiling cases. The second bill was pushed in part because some legislators thought the police department abused the power of stop-and-frisk.

Bloomberg has vowed to veto the bills.

 

NYC Council passes NYPD oversight legislation


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

File photo

The New York City Council approved legislation that could make dramatic changes to the management of the NYPD.

Early this morning the Council passed the Community Safety Act, which contains two separate bills.

One will create an inspector general to oversee the activities of the police department and have subpoena power, while the other bill will make it easier for people to sue the NYPD over racial profiling.

“#Victory! Tonight, the @NYCCouncil passed the #CommunitySafetyAct by a veto-proof majority! This day is long overdue,” tweeted Brooklyn Councilmember Jumaane Williams, who drafted the legislation.

Supporters of the bill are celebrating the passage of the legislation, saying the NYPD abuses its stop-and-frisk policy, which allows officers to halt people and search them, and the surveillance of Muslims.

“This morning the Council took a major step towards reining in racial profiling in New York City,” NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous said. The Council acted to restore sanity and safety to the streets of New York City and the lives of hundreds and thousands of young people.”

Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association and others against the bill said that it will hamper the work of the officers and increase crime.

“Last year, there were a record-low number of murders and a record-low number of shootings in our city, and this year, we’re on pace to break both of those records,” Bloomberg said in a statement released earlier today. “Unfortunately, these dangerous pieces of legislation will only hurt police officers’ ability to protect New Yorkers and sustain this tremendous record of accomplishment.”

Bloomberg promised to veto the bills, but the City Council is expected to have enough votes to overturn the veto, according to reports.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Friday: Partly cloudy with a chance of rain. High of 70. Breezy. Winds from the North at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 50%. Friday night: Partly cloudy with a chance of rain in the evening, then clear. Low of 61. Winds from the WNW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 20%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Disco Inferno III

Back once again, the music/dance extravaganza Disco Inferno at Resorts World Casino NYC on Friday, June 14 will feature Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes, Rochelle Fleming of First Choice, Double Exposure, Carol Williams, Disco Unlimited, DJ Jenny Costa, Percussionist Peter Gozzi and host Al Magliano. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Mayor blasts DOJ’s recommendation for NYPD monitor ahead of stop-and-frisk decision

The U.S. Justice Department has tread carefully into the debate over the NYPD’s stop, question and frisk policy, telling a federal judge that it strongly endorses an independent monitor to oversee changes should she decide civil rights violations have occurred.  Read more: CBS New York/AP

NYCHA budget cuts could lead to 500 jobs lost, section 8 rent hikes

The federal sequester’s impact could soon be causing big headaches for New Yorkers who live in public housing. Read more: NY1

City Council considers bill punishing buyers of counterfeit goods
It’s one of the worst kept secrets in New York City. Read more: CBS New York/AP

Schneiderman, mourning dad push for cellphone theft prevention tech

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on Thursday put a human face on the scourge of smartphone thefts to pressure cellphone makers to improve anti-theft technologies. Read more: New York Daily News

NFL to limit bags brought into stadiums 

Bring yourself to the game. Leave the cooler and backpack at home. Read more: NBC New York

Newtown shooting: 6 months later

Six months after the Newtown school shooting, the tragedy will be marked with a moment of silence, the reading of thousands of names of gun violence victims and calls around the country to pass legislation expanding background checks for gun purchases. Read more: AP

Queens’s Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Tuesday: Mostly cloudy. Fog early. High of 82. Winds from the SW at 5 to 15 mph. Tuesday night: Overcast with thunderstorms and rain showers. Low of 70. Winds from the SW at 5 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Swingin’ with the All Stars: Louis Armstrong & Baseball 

Swingin’ with the All Stars: Louis Armstrong & Baseball, a new exhibit at the Louis Armstrong House Museum, explores his favorite sport, which he followed passionately. A longtime Brooklyn Dodgers fan, Louis switched to the New York Mets in the late 60s. The exhibit includes photos and artifacts exploring his relationship with the game. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Police pursue persons of interest in shooting death of girl, 14, on bus

Police have several leads and are pursuing a few persons of interest in the shooting death of a 14-year-old girl on a Queens bus Saturday, law enforcement sources tell NBC 4 New York. Read more: NBC New York 

Rockaway beaches readying to open Saturday after $140 million effort to repair Sandy’s destruction

The Rockaway Beach shoreline is turning shades of blue and chartreuse in preparation for Saturday’s unofficial kick-off of the summer season. Read more: New York Daily News

Willets Point business owners: We are being evicted by NYC for no reason

A lot of workers are about to lose their jobs. They got kicked out of their auto body shops by the landlord. Read more: CBS New York

City slams lawsuit alleging racial discrimination in stop-and-frisk during closing arguments

Witnesses who alleged racial bias in the NYPD’s use of stop-and-frisk didn’t prove their case, lawyers for the city said Monday in closing arguments in a nine-week trial over the controversial tactic. Read more: New York Daily News 

Crews dig through night after deadly Okla. twister

Spotlights bore down on massive piles of shredded cinder block, insulation and metal as crews worked through the night lifting bricks and parts of collapsed walls where a monstrous tornado barreled through the Oklahoma City suburbs, demolishing an elementary school and reducing homes to piles of splintered wood.  Read more: AP

NY crackdown on repeat drunken drivers keeps thousands off state roads: officials

New York officials say their crackdown on repeat drunken drivers through new rules imposed last September has resulted in 3,164 potentially dangerous motorists being kept off the state’s roadways. Read more: NBC New York

Democratic candidates tackle tough issues at Queens mayoral debate


| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Melissa Chan

Four of five Democrats running for mayor would do away with stop-and-frisk or severely tweak it if they make it to Gracie Mansion.

City Comptroller John Liu, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and ex-Comptroller Bill Thompson said they were opposed to the controversial police tactic at a Queens mayoral debate last week. Former Councilmember Sal Albanese said it needed to be modified.

Front-runner City Council Speaker Christine Quinn was a no-show at the April 11 forum and has not publicly announced her stance on the issue.

“You think you’re reading about some third world dictatorship, not America and certainly not the City of New York,” Liu said. “It has to be abolished. That’s the way to . . . return our city to a state where it’s less of a police state and more of a city that we all came to America to see.”

The four candidates said the NYPD policy has caused rifts between police and communities. Liu, de Blasio and Thompson lambasted the practice as racial profiling.

“Somehow they’re being treated as suspects as a whole class of people,” de Blasio said of young minority males.

The public advocate also supported a plan to allow an inspector general to monitor the city’s police department. He and Thompson called for a new police commissioner, a mayoral appointment, to replace current department head Ray Kelly.

“Stop and frisk, when used correctly, is a useful policing tool,” Thompson said. “But it has been misused and abused by Bloomberg and by Commissioner Ray Kelly.”

Albanese said he would keep the policy in tact but would “focus on quality stops” and officer training. He also supported legalizing marijuana, but did not say if he would give Kelly the boot.

The mayoral hopefuls also discussed the city’s “abysmal” response to Sandy, the need to repair the public school system and plans to fix the city’s income gap.

Liu and de Blasio were in favor of hiking city taxes on incomes of more than $500,000 annually. Thompson said focusing on skill development in public schools would help close the city’s income gap.

“I always talk about the ‘tale of two cities’ we’re living,” de Blasio said. “It’s right in front of our eyes, these vast disparities that are going unaddressed.”

Albanese touted the 1996 passage of the New York City Living Wage Bill under his City Council tenure. But he warned against raising taxes on the wealthy, saying it would push the rich out of the city.

“It’s very sexy to say, ‘Let’s tax the rich.’ Bottom line is we want to generate revenue from services,” he said.

Liu, who wants to increase minimum wage to $11.50 an hour, said there was no evidence of wealthy residents hightailing it out of the city.

“I think it’s time that we stop holding our city hostage to those kinds of ideas,” he said.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Thursday: Overcast with a chance of snow. High of 39 with a windchill as low as 27. Winds from the NNW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 30%. Thursday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 30 with a windchill as low as 21F. Winds from the WNW at 10 to 15 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Spring Peepers with the National Park Service

Celebrate the first full day of spring with a National Park Ranger on a stroll to Big Johns Pond. Evening will begin with a short indoor presentation. Bring a flashlight. Free. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Quinn, rivals at odds over paid sick leave at mayoral candidates forum

There wasn’t much the five candidates disagreed on at a mayoral forum for Democratic candidates Wednesday night, except for Christine Quinn’s resistance to bringing paid sick leave up for a vote in the City Council. Read more: NY1

Cuomo, state lawmakers reach budget deal 

Governor Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders said Wednesday evening that they have reached a state budget agreement, which would include raising the minimum wage to $9 an hour over three years. Read more: CBS New York

Vice President Biden in NYC to talk gun control

The Vice President of the United States will meet with Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the families of the victims of the Newtown, Conn. massacre to discuss toughening gun control laws. Read more: Fox New York

Cops act out proper stop-and-frisk procedures in new NYPD training

Cops-turned-actors are showing police officers a better way to stop and frisk in new NYPD training on a city-block stage set in the Bronx. Read more: New York Daily News

‘Tonight’ headed to Apple

Work is under way to bring the “Tonight Show” back to New York. Read more: New York Post

President Obama meets Palestinians as rockets hit Israel

U.S. President Barack Obama is meeting Palestinian officials on the second day of his Mideast tour to emphasize the importance of reaching an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal, a message underscored Thursday when Palestinian militants in Gaza launched rockets into southern Israel. Read more: ABC New York/AP

NYPD releases stop-and-frisk stats


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

File photo

For the first time, the NYPD has released 2011 data regarding the controversial procedure of stop-and-frisk.

Among those stopped-and-frisked in 2011, 87 percent were either black or Hispanic, according to the report. Of the 685,724 stops made citywide, 53 percent were black while 34 percent were Hispanic. Only 9 percent of those stopped-and-frisked were white, while 4 percent were Asian.

The most common crime suspected was weapons possession, which accounted for 26 percent of all stops.

According to the report, Brooklyn’s 75th Precinct, comprising East New York and Cypress Hills, had the highest number of stops in the city, with more than 31,000, of which 97 percent of which were either black or Hispanic. The 73rd Precinct in Brooklyn, covering Brownsville, was the next highest with 25,167 stops, 98 percent of which involved minorities.

Queens’ 115th Precinct of East Elmhurst, Corona and Jackson Heights ranked third with 18,156 stops. Nearly 93 percent of those stopped were minorities.

The New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU), which fought to have stop-and-frisk statistics released last year, claims the system is a form of racial profiling, adding that the practice has not reduced the number of people who fall victim to shootings. In 2002, there were 1,892 victims of gunfire and 97,296 stops. In 2011, there were 1,821 victims of gunfire but a record 685,724 stops.

 

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