The New York Police Department’s 114th Precinct has apprehended a suspect they believe was responsible for three recent burglaries in Westview, confirmed crime prevention officer Gabriel Tovar at last week’s Roosevelt Island Residents’ Association meeting.
“To put things in perspective, there were three burglaries and they were all committed by the same person, and we’ve made an arrest.” According to Tovar, the suspect is a parolee, who is now incarcerated with a $10,000 bond.
He also updated members about the ongoing investigation into an October 27 robbery in which an unidentified individual approached a 19-year-old male walking near the Subway sandwich shop and slashed him on his left arm in an attempt to remove a chain from the victim’s neck. “I don’t want to give up too much information, but it seems like an isolated event,” Tovar said. “The person doesn’t live here.” Regarding the September 7 public lewdness incident, Tovar said, “It’s been brought to my attention.”
In response to a question from RIRA secretary Joyce Short regarding sufficiency of police presence on the Island, Tovar said he felt the island was already well covered.
He pointed out that 12 NYPD officers patrol this area. Their beat covers 21st Street to Vernon Boulevard, Astoria Park South to Queens Plaza North, as well as all of Roosevelt Island. The Island also has the Public Safety Department, as well as NYPD Neighborhood Coordination Officers Joseph Esposito and Keith Matthes.
“I am not taking this lightly, but I’m not sure how much more coverage you need,” he said.
Tovar advised Islanders to be sure to lock their doors behind them, to look through their peepholes before answering the door, and to keep their peepholes clear of any decorations.
He also urged residents and business owners to take advantage of the NYPD’s free Security Surveys. During a survey, precinct personnel visit a residence and business to evaluate its security and to provide suggestions and options for improvements that can be installed at little or no cost.
“We will visit your apartments to check your locks and windows and security system, and we do that free of charge,” he said.
He emphasized that exterior building doors should never be left propped open or otherwise left unsecured, and offered that, if need be, “I have no problem speaking to your management.”
To request crime prevention tips or to sign up for a free NYPD Security Survey, Islanders can contact Tovar at the 114th Precinct Crime Prevention Office at 718-626-9324.