Murders and Shootings Continue to Decline, Other Crimes Rise, Mayor Calls on Court System to Come Back

Murders and Shootings Continue to Decline, Other Crimes Rise, Mayor Calls on Court System to Come Back

By Yehudit Garmaise

     Murders and shootings in New York City in September have continued to decrease when the NYPD compares statistics with those from September 2020, but the overall number of crimes in the city increased from 9,187 this time last year to 9,430 last month.

     The good news is that the NYPD continues to make record numbers of gun arrests.

     In September 2020, the number of of perpetrators who committed crimes that involved guns was 393, which brought the total number of gun arrests in 2021 to 3,425, which is a 20.9% increase.

     While last year, 59 New Yorkers were murdered, last month, that number went down to 46.

     Shooting incidents also came down from 150 in September 2020 to 136 last month, the NYPD reported.

     Burglaries in the city, unfortunately, increased from 1,123 last year at this time to 1,320 last month, and other crimes, such as felonious assault and robbery also increased.

     The NYPD is on the street doing its part, however, this morning at his press conference, Mayor Bill de Blasio emphasized that while the NYPD is doing its part, the department cannot keep the city safe without a fully functioning court system, which issues consequences and justice for those who commit crimes, he said.

     “While almost every part of our society is operating at full strength, there is one conspicuous absence: the court system. Trials are down 92% compared to pre-pandemic levels, the mayor reported. Pleas are down 55%.

     “This is not acceptable,” the mayor said. “The court system is not moving forward. It is just a fact. “We are not seeing enough progress.

    “My message to the court system is: ‘Do your job, come back fully. We need you now.

    “We cannot get safer without you. We cannot create the safety we need for New Yorkers if there is not a functioning court system.

     The mayor added, “1,500 people are in custody in Rikers awaiting trial for more than one year because the court system is not functioning, they continue to wait.”

     “Those 1,500 people in Rikers are just sitting there, waiting to have their cases heard,” echoed Dharma Diaz, a council member from the 37th District in Brooklyn, who works closely with judges and the legal system. “The court system has to be open. The trials are down 92%. “The workers of the court system should know that they are needed, they are valued, and we need them back on the job."

     To accommodate court workers who have COVID concerns, Gov. Hochul, last week, issued an executive order that expanded virtual court appearances, which the mayor called “an additional tool in the arsenal.”

     The mayor then called on the Office of Court Administration to immediately put on their calendars 1,000 more court appearances a week: some of which can be done virtually, “so we can work off this backlog and move forward.  “In absence of that, we can’t make the city as safe as it deserves to be.”

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