Open Thread Wednesday

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  • skb

    Good morning, Neighbors. I’ve had good luck here before (thankful for this community), so I’m trying again. Does anyone have a great eye doctor in Brooklyn Heights who takes insurance that they would recommend?
    Thank you!

  • Bornhere

    Jim Deutsch (855-8700), on Remsen, just east of Henry. We have gone to him for years and have been glad he’s there.

  • skb

    Thank you so much! I did a quick web search, and a lot of people are saying his staff is quite rude (which I can handle) and that appointments are never on time (which would deter me.) Have you had that experience?

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Park yesterday near Pier 1

  • StudioBrooklyn

    White caps on the bay yesterday

  • rjg

    NYPD Precinct 84
    Current incident map, stats and incident details are online:

  • rjg

    NYPD Precinct 84, major crimes, incident map
    1/1/2016 to 3/27/2016
    Source: NYPD Compstat 2.0

  • rjg

    NYPD Precinct 84, example of incident detail
    Source: NYPD Compstat 2.0

  • William Gilbert

    I don’t believe that all crimes are being reported, ii fact I know it. I have seen the police talk people out of reporting incidents. I wonder even if all reported crimes make the list. Some are even “reclassified” as lesser crimes. Sorry, having lived here for 30 years, I just look around me and I know what I see.

  • WillowL

    I would go to Dr. Friedman or patel at heights vision.

  • Slyone

    Staff haven’t been that bad (not super warm, but fine), and I haven’t had bad luck with late appointments. I’ve absolutely heard the late appointment thing from friends who also go to him, but it’s always been ok for me. Big issue is how long it takes to get an appointment. It’s often 4+ months before you can get in when you call, at least that’s been my experience.

  • alyssabereznak

    Morning! The latest episode of BK HeightsCast is out, featuring probably the best local Yelp review I’ve ever read. Enjoy.

  • karen

    I am searching for a photograph of the rear of the homes on Columbia Heights prior to 1965, showing backyards, fencing, etc. This would be an image that was taken from the promenade towards the houses. I have dug as far as anyone can possibly dig in all of the online and physical resources available so I figured I’d see if anyone has something in their personal files. If you do, I’ll be happy to provide my email and would be extraordinarily grateful! Thank you!

  • StudioBrooklyn

    It goes without saying that not all crimes go reported. By definition, this is what is meant by “getting away with” a crime, including every instance where a cyclist runs a red light or someone in a car breaks the 25MPH limit.

    Incomplete as the picture may be, though, it’s far more helpful than nothing, and probably reflects with some degree of accuracy the larger patterns of crime that may exist in our area. I notice that within the precinct, Court Street seems to be a significant dividing line, with a much greater amount of crime occurring in the downtown and Vinegar Hill area than in Brooklyn Heights.

  • Brooklynite

    Chin-Chu Mayling, MD at 48 Livingston Street

  • rjg

    Unless the underreporting of major crime is SOMETHING BRAND NEW THIS YEAR then underreporting doesn’t alter the fact that the TREND so far in 2016 is down.

    Underreporting should be seen as a constant source of error in both 2015 and 2016.

    We can continue this discussion as time goes on. I’ll post the stats at the end of each month.

  • Reggie

    In other words, you are looking for images earlier than those included in the historic district designation report?

  • Jeffrey Smith

    What you say is 100% correct city wide. The distortion is least in a pct like the 84th. But you are correct. A large component of this is simple lack of deployment. If, for example Court Street has little or no visable Patrol activity and something happens and no one reports it, it didn’t happen. This is a statistics driven department, no longer a street intelligence driven organization. Now, NO ONE, at least no sane person wants to go back to the “super chiefs” management of the 1970’s, stats have at least made commanders responsible. But the system then began to find ways partially around the stats. Its the new conscious objection.

    We ARE falling back into the “10-70″/”10-90″ culture. 10-70 is the code when a called in report is found to be unfounded 10-90 is when they can’t find a perpetrator. It works like this; you call in a perfectly good report complete with eyes-on perfect detailed description. So a car goes to the scene. The highly described perb has now moved a little as a half block away. The car goes to the digital address, they don’t see the perp. They report that the call is unfounded. So unless you go down at point out the guy (guess how many people are willing to do that) the call is burnt off and no stats are ever generated. That’s the 10-70 culture. In the 84 its minimal, but in other pcts is a basic way of operation.

  • StoptheChop

    NEVER on time– that’s true. And his staff can be unpleasant at times (ok at other times). But he’s a great doctor–

  • Jeffrey Smith

    You know, sb, that’s sweet talking around the very serious problem in this city Mr. Gilbert correctly spoke to.

    The hard fact is we are spiraling on many levels back towards to 1970’s. Look at the number of guys we know have done crimes who are now after years started drifting through the Heights. Look at the level of aggression of a wide range of questionable types in the last year. There IS a big upward spike. This is separate and apart from the problems brought by the park. The actual big uptick in crime that I have seen city wide IS considerable.

    But the reason is the direct fault of the victim and everyone reading this right now….

    The REASON why the flocks of bum political figures and the politicians who serve among the dedicated officers at one police plaza, can get away with allowing the city to spin backwards is that the victims and the average person observing crime thinks they just have to call 911 and that’s it. Its only the job of the police from then on.


    Three separate cases in last six months:

    1. I saw an obvious their checking front doors one by one on Columbia Heights. I followed him (I live on Willow and Pierrepont) and called 911.

    They arrived pretty quickly for once. I pointed him out and he ran. They said “sorry, nothing we can do.” We literally watched him run down Columbia Heights all the way. They could be even bothered to drive in that direction.

    2. I called 911 after I watched a crazy cat lady / rent control neighbor steal my package. When the cops arrived 3.5 hours later they first said “why did your wait so long to call?”

    They then spoke to the woman – who
    Immediately accused me of STEALING a package from HER!

    They told me there wouldn’t be much of a point to filling out a report, and told me they believed her.

    3. Someone tried to break into my apartment. They used a crowbar and tried to pry the door open. They broke the door frame and left splinters all over the floor.

    When the cops arrived, they told me they couldn’t fill out a report because it doesn’t amount to breaking and entering. They said they couldn’t do anything except file it as “petty vandalism against my door” but told me flat-out that “there’s not really any point.”

  • Cranberry Beret

    There aren’t any photos (or anything else interesting, for that matter) in the Brooklyn Heights historic district designation report

  • Jeffrey Smith

    In my comments I am reacting to Mr. Gilbert’s first post.

    But its true the reality here is that people DON’T first report a crime.
    And THEN they DON’T go down to the precinct file a crime report and later call back and get the report number, what’s called a “sixty one” number.

    Now, this is the SECOND big way the statistics are kept down…..
    Often when you go to a precinct complaint room you have to deal with the average obnoxious police aide, a PA, you don’t get to deal with a police officer, and what you 99% get are agressive arguments why your incident A) doesn’t rise to the level of a crime or B) is the lowest crime they can attribute to the event. Again, the complaint room at the 84 is much better than every other pct I’ve been in. But Its a whole calculated game and it’s city wide. It really helps if you bring photos of the damage int incident caused. The ONLY time I have EVER seen a crime report taken without endless street games and resistance is when the victim shows up with a locally well known attorney. Then you see how quickly they know how to behave.

  • Jeffrey Smith

    Rjg, you’re doing bureaucrat speak while were doing real world observation.
    Keep your stats, while its true, that stats accuracy and conditions in the 84 are far better that elsewhere and its true that things are far, far better than the worst of the mid 70’s to early 80’s, that’s NOT what’s being considered here;

    Its the amount of real unquantified crime and victimization and the basic general spirial backwards. Which has accelerated in the last two years…

    But again, ALL this is because the powers that be have craftily shaped a program of discouragement of victims. The object is to so discourage victims so as they go away quietly licking thier wounds and don’t become a political problem or pubically visable. The, often very unwise, victims in this city often comply with the careful discouragement.

    The ONLY way you will EVER have safety and security in this crazy city is when the COST of someone becoming a victim is so HIGH that every level of power know they can’t operate as they want because there is a LOUD, ACTIVE victim movement/community. And in a community like the Heights this is do-able. But the victims and those concerned THEMSELVES have to MAKE it happen. First, you have to insist on a safe lever of police in your area. This is technically termed “patrol strength”. Second you have to make the complaint system work honestly. Third, victims have to show up repeatedly, consistantly , undeturred at each and every police community council monthly meeting and be VERY vocal! Forget who you may ruffle, get past your embarrisment and yell your blood head off at what’s happening in this city now. YOU have to show up, YOU have to be loudly vocal and YOU may have to put the conditions you see on you tube…but YOU have to make the city safe. The citizen in conjunction with the remaining good people in government are going have do this.

  • Willow Street Watch

    I know this may be vexing, but everyone in this city should have a good, sensitive to a full spectrum of threats, alarm system. A loud system that causes scores of additional calls from neighbors, in turn causes incidents to be higher profile events….

    Generally speaking a larger and larger number of street wise New Yorkers have picked up small DVR’s which they simply carry. When there’s a problem they put it on.

    End of nonsense.

    Because once something’s recorded and the threat of it being downloaded to you tube or any public view is present, the whole situation changes radically in favor of the actual victim.

    For what a bloggie/go video cube/or any other good worn system costs, its better than $20,000 or more in legal fees.

  • Reggie

    After I wrote what I did, it occurred to me that the designation report for the city’s first historic district might not be as robust as what came to be standard in later reports. Thanks CB!


    We had a proper security system installed within 24 hours. The building put cameras on each floor and several in the lobby and outside within the week.

    I also alerted every tenant in the building, put up signs in the lobby. I discovered that two other tenants had packages stolen from inside the building in the prior 60 days (likely from the neighbor I caught, to no consequence).

    At least, I did my due diligence – despite the complete lack of help from the police.


    And the door was obviously repaired and reinforced.

  • karen

    Short answer is that we ideally need something prior to the historic designation, and after the promenade was built. So basically 1950-1965. It’s fairly shocking to me how few images exist. Thanks!

  • rjg

    So you want to reduce the debate to your “real world observation.” Well, that would make my experience as valid as yours.

    I’ve lived within three blocks of Borough Hall for 34 years; the last 32 years I’ve lived in the downtown a block east of Court Street. My personal experience is that there is a lot less crime these days. I haven’t personally witnessed a crime or heard a neighbor complain about one in at least 15 years. I walk the dog around the downtown early in the morning, at 4:00 a.m. and don’t have any problems. I walk the dog around the downtown later at night, around 9:30 p.m., and don’t have any problems.

    So who’s right? Your personal experiences, and mine, are only one part of the picture. The NYPD CompStat is drawing on the experiences of hundreds of people in the 84th Precinct you and I have never met. I think it’s wise to take advantage of the info, always stay alert but relax and enjoy our developing neighborhoods. In general, things really are very nice.