New York Shitty Day Ender: Live From the 94th Precinct Community Council Meeting

Here you go, folks: footage from this evening’s 94th Precinct Community Council meeting! If I had to identify one thing that made this meeting different than its predecessors it would be the rather substantial amount of time spent outlining and discussing the manifold number of quality of life issues posed by bars and nightclubs. Enjoy!

Part I: Two guest speakers and D.I. Hurson commences with the run-down of this month’s criminal activity/trends

1. Two guest speakers: Abby Tuller of the North Brooklyn Coalition Against Domestic Violence and officers from the 94th Precinct’s Domestic Violence Unit.

  • Ms. Tuller outlines two candlelight vigils to be conducted this month (NOTE: October is domestic violence awareness month.) You can learn more about these events by clicking here.
  • Two officers from the 94th Precinct’s own Domestic Violence Unit outlines options/services to victims of domestic violence. these include (but are not limited to): an alternative to shelter program (simply put, they will install an alarm system— this requires an order of protection and a land-line telephone); Safe Horizons (a shelter), and free cell phones (which can only call 911) an order of protection is required for this as well.

2. D.I. Hurson gives a general run-down of the month’s “business”.

  • There was a shooting at the Cooper Park Houses. A man was shot twice in the leg.
  • Hurson touches upon (briefly) the DWI fatality which came to pass on Meserole Avenue and Leonard Street. As it would happen, a patrol car was in the area, heard the crash and got to the scene immediately. The driver of said vehicle has been charged with manslaughter.
  • While overall crime is down, cell phones thefts are on the rise.
  • D.I. Hurson speaks briefly about the suicide which came to pass at McGolrick Park September 23rd. The man was described as being on-again/off-again homeless and they are still awaiting the results of the toxicology report.
  • D.I. Hurson gives the rundown regarding a hit and run which came to pass at Calyer Street and McGuinness Boulevard last month.

Part II: D.I. Hurson wraps up with a couple of less serious topics and the Q & A session begins!

1. The Open Space Alliance Concerts are (once again) brought to the table.

2. The issue of homelessness is (once again) raised and “wet shelters” (Also know as “harm-reduction shelters”) are mentioned.

3. A rather lengthy discussion about bars ensues. This is best listened to to be appreciated. However, I will list a few key points here:

  • The usual trifecta of trouble rears its ugly head: noise, crowd control/overall rowdiness and public urination.
  • North 3rd Street and Berry Street is apparently a “hot spot” for these activities.

Part III: Q & A Session, continued; more dialogue about bars

  • Spritzenhaus continues to be a problem. Per one attendee/neighbor, she tried to speak to the owner of this establishment and he was— and I quote— “nasty”.
  • An attendee asks if these is a way to get access to a log of 311 complaints about bars behaving badly.
  • A question is posed about whether or not motorcycles are required to have mufflers. In addition, some motorcyclists are doing “wheelies” on Leonard Street. The legality of this practice is questioned.
  • In a new development the Warsaw merits a mention.
  • Drug traffic is discussed.

Part IV: Q & A session, continued; miscellaneous

1. A citizen asks if citizens photographing/filming unlawful behavior is helpful. D.I. Hurson answers to the affirmative. “Everyone is a walking t.v. station.”

2. The “find my phone” app is explained by D.I. Hurson.

3. A rather subdued (and downright sweet) Phyllis speaks. She lauds Officers Adamo and hopes that Hurson will be with us for awhile.

Part V: Lincoln Restler speaks

1. Mr. Restler thanks yours truly for filming these proceedings and lauds Hurson for his hard work.

2. He talks about the relocation of the Open Space Alliance concerts to 50 Kent Avenue.

3. He briefly touches upon “Stand Up, Speak Out” and creating safe havens where victims of harassment can go until the police arrive.

4. The recent traffic fatality here in Greenpoint and overall traffic issues are explored.

5. Mr. Restler advises attendees to make their complaints regarding disorderly or simply obnoxious bars known to our local community board.

On a related/closing note, here’s my “advice” as to how to go about the complaint process. Those of you who were present at lst night’s meeting— or have issues with such an establishment and/or its patrons— please give it a read.

A New York Shitty Op Ed: As you will notice I was asked (once again) by a woman to turn my camera off.  I was quite prepared for this eventuality by the head of the Community Council beforehand. It would appear that she has received a number of complaints about yours truly filming these proceedings. In fact, two people left the community council for just this reason.

Here’s the deal, folks: these are public proceedings. I am perfectly entitled to film them— just as attendees are more than welcome to pose questions privately afterward. In other words: there is a system in place which balances my right to film these meetings with others who seek to air their concerns privately. It would appear that this seems to have gone unnoticed or has been simply disregarded by some.

I film these proceedings not because I find them enjoyable (although they can be); rather, I do so because I know a lot of people who consider themselves to be stakeholders in this community and as such are interested in what is going in north Brooklyn. These individuals simply cannot attend due to work schedules, child care; and (as Lincoln Restler mentioned) simply being ill. By filming this footage I am enabling these people to stay informed about the goings on in north Brooklyn.

Thus the question becomes:

Whose rights prevail?

I am more than willing to be sensitive to the rights of others. One woman requested that I not film her face this evening— so I didn’t. I completely understand. It is neither my desire not purpose to cause a “chilling effect” on people speaking out by filming these proceedings.

However, I have very serious issues with any one individual or group who/which sees fit to disallow me from filming these meetings— which is my right— because they do not like it. It is my understanding that the 94th Precinct Community Council meetings are intended as a means for our police department to share information and dialogue with this community. By filming and sharing these proceedings I am continuing this dialogue. To disallow my— or anyone else’s— documenting these proceedings truncates this dialogue and creates a “chilling effect” as well. Just a thought.


4 Comments on New York Shitty Day Ender: Live From the 94th Precinct Community Council Meeting

  1. SpillConspirator on Tue, 11th Oct 2011 11:17 pm
  2. I truly appreciate being able to watch these meetings online, when I’m unable to attend. Thank you. Tonight, I was able to be there and it seems like there’s alot more people attending. I think that’s in part because of the much needed attention your coverage provides.

  3. mcgolrickheights on Wed, 12th Oct 2011 6:14 am
  4. Your filming of these meetings is more vital than one person’s paranoid delusions of what this filming is doing to them. I can’t understand for the life of me why a sane person would have issue with this. And if they’re not sane it’s not your issue. Please keep the camera on.

  5. missheather on Wed, 12th Oct 2011 2:56 pm
  6. Here’s what gets me: nary a single person who has had “issues” with my filming these meetings bothered to reach out to me (the filmer of said meetings). Not a single one.

  7. noah on Wed, 19th Oct 2011 12:09 pm
  8. Thanks for continuing to film these.

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