Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Report: Police take action against heroin users in Tompkins Square Park


[A reported OD in the Park earlier this summer via Derek Berg]

The Post reports that the NYPD yesterday sent officers into Tompkins Square Park "to deal with junkies openly shooting up heroin." (The Post headline: 'Crusties' shooting up heroin in Tompkins Square Park finally get the boot.)

The action was apparently taken after an unnamed nearby business owner called 311 to complain. The Post reports that this 311 call was later returned by someone in Internal Affairs.

We'll let the Post tell the story:

The business owner said his partner recently asked a cop on patrol why nothing was being done to stem the scourge and was told: “Well, if we don’t catch them doing it red-handed, we can’t search them for drugs.”

The business owner, who asked not to be identified by name, got fed up and called 311, and received a call back the next day from a stunned Internal Affairs Bureau cop.

“He was flabbergasted,” recalled the source, who said the investigator called the situation “inexcusable” and vowed to “get to the bottom of it.”

And...

“It’s well known they have issues in the park at times, and they deal with it on an ongoing basis,” the spokesman said, adding that cops have made 63 drug-related busts there so far this year.

This was the fifth consecutive year that the rate of deaths from heroin-involved overdoses increased throughout New York City, according to Department of Health statistics.

Meanwhile, the 9th Precinct tweeted this from yesterday...


Media reports about an influx of homeless people and drug users in Tompkins Square Park last July prompted the arrival of an NYPD patrol tower.

48 comments:

Gojira said...

Nothing new here - I still remember drug dealers openly plying their trade on the southeast corner of 11th and A back in the early 1980s, while the local beat cops - yes, they did have them on occasion - stood on the northwest corner and watched in apparent boredom.

Anonymous said...

The visibility of the homeless, crusties, and otherwise unfortunate individuals always increases in the summertime. You don't realize it, but the situation is always the same, all year round. I've lived in the EV for over 35 years...some things change. This has not.

Anonymous said...

Are the "Travelers" or "Crusties" considered "homeless"? I always think of homeless as in residents of NYC which have lost their residence due to unemployment, substance abuse, mental illness or all of the above. The Crusties seem like lost young people that may have chosen this life as an extended camping trip. They seem to have the wits and whereabouts to travel with the seasons unlike "real" NYC homeless.

Anonymous said...

Well maybe it should change. The NYPD should arrest these people and they should be sentenced to rehab and shelter. The heroin problem is just getting worse.

Anonymous said...

Nothing new.

Anonymous said...

Oh look when the Ninth Precinct is catching shit for shirking their job - a cop can fucking search whoever the fuck he/she wants, no warrant required to search a body - they post themselves on Twitter. Nice photo op. What bullshit. Fake friendliness.

If I was an officer I would singlehandedly pat down every one of these crustis, haul in everyone who has drugs or drug paraphenalia on them, and tell everyone who doesn't have drugs or drug paraphenalia and has no ID on them to get out of the park.

Anonymous said...

memories
dealers having a snowball fight in front of village farms, 2nd ave & 9th stteet
touching actually

Anonymous said...

It's about time!

Ken from Ken's Kitchen said...

Good for you, 10:20 AM. NYC couldn't pay me enough to pat down every crusty in TSP.

Anonymous said...

10:20AM: "everyone who doesn't have drugs or drug paraphenalia and has no ID on them to get out of the park." No ID! That's rich. "STAY OUTTA MALIBU LEBOWSKI!"

Anonymous said...

"and tell everyone who doesn't have drugs or drug paraphenalia and has no ID on them"

so i need ID now to hang out in a city park? fuck you

Anonymous said...

I have lived in the area 20 years and hung out there since the mid 80's and it is definitely worse than it is has been in while. Way more crusties sleeping all around park and in front of AVE B restaurants etc.. something has to be done so we can all enjoy park . Not very nice for children if 1/2 the park has junkies shooting up!

Anonymous said...

TECHNICALLY you do need ID .. if Police ask you for ID you must present it!

Anonymous said...

I went into Tompkins on a weekday just a few days ago to sit on a bench and I had to move twice. I have lived here nearly 30 years and got used to the park being safer but something is up this summer. There is a lot more drug use and the travelers are also going into the dog park now to hang out and hose off. I wish there were a few cops making rounds throughout the park and stopping by the dog park and the area next to the basketball courts to make sure everything is okay.

DinkyDoo said...

What a joke I walk through the park 10 minutes ago so I see six police officers standing around talking I see a knapsack with nobody near it I went up to the police officers told them there was a black knapsack on the side of the park nobody is around it one police officer looked at me and said "yeah... And?".... I said" oh I'm sorry I thought it was see something say something"...
Apparently they're just hanging around the park socializing

Anonymous said...

Strange that one business making a call to 311 aroused the interest of internal affairs. there must be more to the story.

Anonymous said...

10:20 AM, if you were an officer you'd do what you were told, after spit shining your jack boots, obvi.

Anonymous said...

While this behavior has always existed in the East Village, the tolerance level of the locals has changed. Such behavior is no longer acceptable.

Thank you

Anonymous said...

please be informed! It is not a law that identification be carried in NYC. Know your rights. Do not be intimidated by officers who ask for identification. Do not be persuaded by frightened citizens telling you that identification must be presented when an officer asks for one. KNOW YOUR RIGHTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

You are not legally required to carry ID or show ID to the police in New York State. That said NYPD can detail or arrest on "probable cause" which is a murky legal area - see: stop and frisk etc ... Here's a link which is almost 10 years old but I believe still valid.

http://www.nyclu.org/oped/column-showing-id-nypd-our-times

Of course this doesn't apply if you are breaking any law at all - jay walking, littering, open container. As far as I know there is no law against smelling really bad or puking on your dog.

The crusties / travelers are back somewhat this summer having fallen off recently. And there is more heroin and K2 (yuck) evident in the park. There's also an anecdotal seasonal uptick in rowdy local teenagers but not much more than standard for this East Village era.

Anonymous said...

The officers are doing too much or too little? Which is it?

Anonymous said...

Nobody cares what it used to be like. Lots of us remember. The junkies are a menace. I live 1 block away. I want to be able to use the park. All of the "it used to be worse" "nothing new" comments are so stupid.

Anonymous said...

Fuck the crusties... Saw ten of them shooting on the fenced off area with their untended pit bulls...
Two cops were standing twenty feet from them watching them.
Hope that there will now be a change

Anonymous said...

Hosing off in the dog park? I'd pull a Deanna Carter on their asses. Go ahead and panhandle - but stay outta the damn dog park!

Anonymous said...

11:37,

You are under no obligation to provide your ID to a police officer unless you have been detained as a suspect for violating the law.

So if you are sitting in Tompkins Square Park, reading a book, the police cannot require you to provide your ID. If they detain you because they have a reasonable suspicion you are shooting up, then you must provide an ID or be charged with obstruction.

Anonymous said...

Wow you're ask the reason why poor people stay poor. I went to Tompkins for the first time in a few years I think I saw a half dozen kids sitting under a tree drinking. Just leave then alone. Also anyone who says they watch junkies sitting up in public are just a bunch of liars. No one does that shit in public. I wish people would come to the East village and start mugging you yuppies, and then maybe you would have something real to bitch about.

Anonymous said...

There's more chaos b/c the entire damn neighborhood has been made into transient-ville. The only difference between the crusties & the bros is how much money they have. Neither one has any interest in the neighborhood being maintained to a decent standard. For that, you need long-term residents (you know, the older people who everyone is always saying should either die or move to Ohio).

And I have given up on expecting anything from the 9th precinct; I think when you phone a police precinct you should expect a human being to answer the phone, not have to go through the phone-tree-menu hell. But maybe it's just me...

Anonymous said...

I MEANT if you are caught drinking or doing drugs you must present ID... did not mean you must present ID for no reason..
Hate the Crusties though and the torture of their dogs.. .. get off the smack and go back to CT.

I have lived in EV 20 years and CONSTANTLY see people shooting up!

Anonymous said...

Junkies are a menace? That's a load. To whom? Themselves maybe.

I'm hoping the junkies drive out the novices and help tank the real estate boom down here.

We need a break.

Anonymous said...

3:25 PM: Maybe it wouldn't bother me either if i only went to the park once every few years. But there is no good reason to turn over whole sections of the lawn to campers. I thought those days were over.

Giovanni said...

Yes there was a Crusty influx down here this summer, and it happened for a reason. For the last couple of summers, many of the Crusties have been heading north to the Upper West Side, You would see them all over Broadway from the 70s on up. Seems like they made a lot of money panhandling up there. This summer at the request of a City Council member and the Community Board there was a big police crackdown on that stretch of Broadway targeting quality of life issues. They even kicked out the booksellers for awhile (who are protected by the 1st Amendment). The booksellers were leaving ther tables and merchandise on the street overnight, leading to lots of complaints by newer local residents, who are much less tolerant these days than the people who lived there in the past. The UWS used to be a much more tolerant and liberal bastion, but no more. People who buy pricey apartments don't have much tolerance for just about anything, or any one. So it looks like this summer the Crusties have come back home to the East Village, and they went straight into Tompkins Square Park.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Giovanni for a bigger picture of the Crusty influx.

As for cops not wanting to frisk a Crusty or other junky.... who wants to get stuck with needle perhaps used by a gang of addicts?

From my experience seeing heroin addicts on the street, they tend to be in a semi-conscious state and not like crack heads who are more likely to get violent.

Crusties in the dog park hosing down for a few minutes, so what. What is worst is when people bring their dogs in the children's playground on 12th street (Sauer Park) as if it's their own private dog run.

Anonymous said...

Update on Crustyville...

Seems like they were kicked out of the park and are now all camped near 2nd and St Marks..

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I counted five of them passed out at 8pm yesterday on that corner...
Makes we wish for the old days when the cops would move them on with a gentle crack of the club to the head

Anonymous said...

9:27, you are a dinosaur. That is not how things work in this day and age. Use the tazer, you animal.

Anonymous said...

Thats not the real story. The complaints were about the homeless hired to watch the books who drank, smoked weed/crack, blasted music, harassed women, urinated everywhere etc. And no leaving books out all night is not legaln This is not a first amendment issue. Having a block long setup and leaving it there is the problem. Is it ok to just take over a sidewalk with tables of crap? After 20 years of Guiliani and Bloomberg people got used to a cleaner more civilized safer city. Is that bad? The vile, racist and
disgusting comments they made to women should have been reason enough to shut them down.

Anonymous said...

Hey 3:25pm if by "drinking" you mean "drinking alcohol" drinking in public is illegal thus I can ticket all one dozen of those kids, take their booze from them, and either tell them to get lost or stay but don't do anything illegal again. If they wanna drink booze they can do so in a bar, some other indoor place, or at home. The law is the law.

Anonymous said...

Good 8:31pm I say assign one cop in that park to tell crusties to get out.

Anonymous said...

I never said I'd arrest someone for no ID, I said I'd tell a crusty with no ID to get out which I can do.

Anonymous said...

When I was growing up I knew almost every cop in the 9th precinct by name. Now it is a miracle if you see one outside a squad car.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the REAL story.

Anonymous said...

Get off your ass and take a walk to the precinct.

Anonymous said...

Walked through the park last night and a bro with two nasal-voiced girlfriends were on a bench drinking out of a bag, shouting to the older couple across the way, "It's ok, we can drink beer here now!" No ticketing for this any more, so get used to seeing more of it.

Anonymous said...

There is a fine line when it comes to animal abuse, they abuse their dogs and it makes me sick. I have lived here 20 years, I avoid Tompkins May thru October.
To many dog attacks. That's what happens when you abuse drugs and don't watch your dog.
So sick of these people bringing dogs down with them.
You are a special kind of sicko when you abuse an animal.
For the record, abuse yourself all you want.

Anonymous said...

Exactly. DiBlasio and the city council want to decriminalize public drinking, urinating, aggressive panhandling, turnstile jumping, and being in parks after hours. So TSP can become a homeless campground again. Just like the old days minus the cheap rent. Expect a passive reactionary NYPD that only responds to 911 calls. Otherwise they will do nothing. Is that progressive enough for you?

LPIFLY said...

Crusties live on trust funds too....

BicycleJoe LoFiSoundAndVision said...

Whiners, First of all it's the Lower East Side, not the East Village. Second of all the Bowery has been the habitat of lost souls since before any of you were born.Sounds like the new suckers that are paying thousands for the same addresses that were hundreds a generation ago are trying to create the same climate that created the spark to ignite the Tompkins Square riots. If you can't deal move to the burbs or go back where you came from, Heroin is a far less danger to our community then gentrification.

Anonymous said...

One thing that irks me as someone who grew up on St Marks Place (late 70's - Current), is the noise and piss/vomit generated by the street kids.. i don't mind if they wanna still hang out on my block, but it's no longer the gritty edgy shithole it once was.. it's a college mall now (much to my chagrin). that gutter pissing, screaming shit no longer has a place here now. you're 30 years late to the game kids. you wanna pretend like you're on some anarchist squatter "fuck the man" shit, but you hang out on one of the most gentrified blocks in the city... it's not cool, it's forced and it's pathetic. you're trying too hard to be something that happened 30 years ago to other people without rich parents in Connecticut. If you wanna play grimey, go find a real squat in a blighted hood, like the way shit was in Alphabet City back when there were real squatters.. not these crusty as a life-style choice kids we see now.