BY ARIEL HERNANDEZ
Community Board 4 discussed quality-of-life issues in the district, an uptick in robbery incidents and parking during the board’s first meeting of 2018.
According to CB 4 District Manager Christian Cassagnol, there has been an ongoing issue of advertisements and fliers being dumped along the sidewalks throughout the community, many of which are from a local pizzeria. Cassagnol said that he reached out to the pizzeria, which he said is “somewhat uncontrolled.” However, nothing has changed.
Cassagnol encouraged homeowners to place a flier on their door that reads, “Do not place unsolicited material here.”
Following Cassagnol’s announcements, Captain Nicola Ventre, commanding officer of the 110th precinct, noted that the precinct has seen an uptick in robberies and grand larceny auto.
“It’s important that you know you’re aware of your surroundings, know where you are, always look around, be cautious of who is in front of you and who is behind you,” said Ventre.
The robberies, which Ventre said consisted of a team of two, have taken place mostly between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. The strategy of the two men has been that one approaches from the front and the other from the rear. Ventre said that they first assault the victims and then rob them of their phones and wallets. The robberies have been taking place in Sector Boyd—from Baxter to Junction Boulevard and Roosevelt to Broadway.
“We have been using more resources,” said Ventre.
Since the Mets are currently in the off-season, the precinct has been able to obtain extra help from the officers who typically secure the stadium.
In addition to robberies, Ventre said that there has been an increase in burglaries, with many of the perpetrators getting into people’s homes through rear entries and windows.
Ventre encouraged residents to check their doors and locks and ensure that the doors and moldings around the doors are secure.
Grand larceny has also been on the rise in the precinct. In the past four weeks, Ventre said there have been 10 cars stolen within the confines of the precinct, and that five of the vehicles were left running with the keys in the ignition.
Ventre said that it is important for people to take their keys out of the ignition, even if they leave their car double parked.
He also asked that the public remain vigilant regarding professional pickpockets along Roosevelt Avenue.
During the public forum, Denise Cunningham, a teacher at IS 61, said that the school has long gone without staff parking. In previous years, the staff was able to park at the church across the street. However, the church was recently sold, leaving staff members with no place to park. According to Cunningham, the new owners of the property offered parking to the staff for $300 a month, plus tax.
Cunningham, who said that her mother was once a teacher at the school and had parking, asked that CB 4 do something to add parking for the teachers.
Lastly, some community members complained about issues that they found inconvenient regarding CB 4’s meetings, such as a lack of parking outside the building—located at 51-11 108th St.—where the meetings are held, no buses or trains in the area, and little sitting room for attendees. Several members on the board agreed with the residents. Cassagnol and Chairman Damian Vargas said that they would take the complaints into consideration.
Community Board 4 serves Corona and Elmhurst.
Reach Ariel Hernandez at (718) 357-7400 x144, firstname.lastname@example.org or @reporter_ariel.