The city has experienced its safest summer in the modern era of recordkeeping — even in the face of a spate of violence surrounding the J’Ouvert celebration in Brooklyn over Labor Day weekend, officials said Tuesday.
Presiding for the last time over the NYPD’s monthly crime briefing, outgoing Police Commissioner William Bratton reflected on 1994, his first summer in the top job.
“I am leaving as I began, with very good crime numbers,” said Bratton, as Mayor Bill de Blasio accompanied him and other police brass in addressing reporters. “We in the department have gotten very good at precision policing, focusing on those crime spikes as they merge to two, three and four incidents before there are 20 and 30.”
The latest police statistics through Sunday showed the city had 236 homicides this year, compared to 246 in the same period during 2015, or a drop of 4.07 percent for the same period. Shooting incidents totaled 700 this year, down 12.4 percent from 799 during the same period last year. Overall serious crimes are down about 2 percent this year.
For the three unofficial summer months ending Aug. 31, the bottom dropped out of serious crimes, said Dermot Shea, the NYPD’s deputy commissioner for operations.
“When we take a look at the summer . . . what we saw was the lowest in terms of overall index crimes for those summer months that we have ever seen in the CompStat era, down about 5.6 percent,” said Shea. The NYPD started using CompStat, its current computerized system of record keeping, in 1994.
The lowest levels were recorded for shootings, robberies, burglaries and stolen cars, said Shea, although he noted that the 100 homicides recorded in the past three months was the third lowest since 1994. Shea also said that almost all the NYPD’s 75 precincts had significant declines in shootings, and that most incidents have been very localized in 10 precincts with people involved in gangs.
Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce announced that his staff had made an arrest Tuesday after four people were shot during the J’Ouvert celebration in Brooklyn early Monday — two fatally.
Reginald Moise, 20, of Brooklyn, was charged in the shooting incident that took the life of Tiarah Poyau, 22.
Meanwhile, an unusual pattern of theft of ice cream from merchants over the summer in Manhattan led to a droll quip from Bratton.
His spokesman, Stephen Davis, remarked that those larcenies were being investigated by the “cold case squad,” Bratton said, drawing laughter.