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Fewer serious crimes at West Indian parade: NYPD

Parade-goers and participants along Eastern Parkway in Brooklyn

Parade-goers and participants along Eastern Parkway in Brooklyn celebrate this year's West Indian Day Parade. This year's celebrations also recognize the 50th anniversary of independence for Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago. (Sept. 3, 2012) Credit: Newsday/Alejandra Villa

Despite two stabbing deaths, Monday's West Indian Day parade had fewer serious crimes than a year ago, NYPD officials said.

The lessening of violence during the parade, which is traditionally part of the West Indian festival of J'Ouvert, mirrored a similar reduction in shootings and homicides around the city, according to the NYPD.

The two fatalities linked to this year's parade occurred later in the day Monday. One involved the stabbing of Leandre Mallinckrodt, 27, of Monroe, N.Y., who police said was jumped from behind by eight unidentified men and stabbed in the neck. The fight started about 5:45 p.m. on Labor Day as a parade float with a large crowd surrounding it turned off the parade route at Eastern Parkway and Bedford Avenue, said police.

The other killing took place about an hour later when a fight broke out outside a Chinese restaurant at St. John Place and Utica Avenue between two men who had been at the parade, said NYPD spokesman Paul Browne. Nifredo Vera, 26, of the Bronx was stabbed in the neck with a pair of scissors and died. Police arrested a 22-year-old Brooklyn man after witnesses pointed him out to officers as the assailant, Browne said.

Last year, Browne said, there were three shootings involving five victims at the parade, not including a fatal altercation off the parade route that led to the death of Eusi Johnson, 29, and Denise Gay, 56, an innocent bystander. This year there were no shootings at the parade, noted Browne. Citywide, there were 22 shootings involving 23 victims over the Labor Day weekend, compared with 48 shootings and 73 victims in 2011, according to police. There were four homicides over the holiday weekend, compared with 12 killings in 2011, said police.

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