Tag Archives: crime

Boardwalk Beaters Behind Bars (and Big Brother’s Back)

Today, the LBPD confirmed more arrests related to the boardwalk beating, and further confirmed that some of those arrested for the attack and robbery on the 17th were also involved in the beating on the 19th.

So, that total number of arrests is up to eight, good job LBPD.  Hopefully, these arrests and the strong response from the LBPD well put a stop to this outbreak of violence.

In an interesting addition, the LB Police Commissioner Sofield Senior said that “plans are in the works to create a system in which cameras will monitor the entire boardwalk 24 hours, seven days a week.”

“This video monitoring system will not replace but enhance all the measures that are currently in place to protect our citizens and visitors on the boardwalk.”

That caught me completely by surprise.  Obviously, I’ve been a huge advocate of an increased police presence on the boardwalk (I was thrilled when I saw stepped-up patrols), but I don’t think cameras are the way to go.

I’m not necessarily worried about the Big Brother privacy angle of cameras on the boardwalk, I’m more concerned with two things more tangible issues:  cost and usefulness.

First off, camera systems are really expensive, and then, someone still needs to watch the cameras for them to be at all proactive.  So, you pay for the cameras, you pay for their upkeep, and then you still pay for a body to watch the cameras’ footage.  You don’t save on manpower, and you certainly don’t save with all the operational costs of maintaining a system like this that will be buffeted by Nor’Easters and hurricanes year-round.  Further, Sofield Senior himself says that the cameras aren’t designed to replace current security measures, so how do they really help?

The second part, and more to the issue of crime itself, is that integrated security systems have proven to be borderline useless in major cities.  In Chicago for instance, a city where millions have been spent to build and integrate 10,000 cameras, over four years they only led to 4,500 arrests.  “Whoa” you may say, “that’s a lot of arrests.”  Well, in Chicago, 4,500 arrests equates to less than 1% of all arrests.  And remember, they also say “led to arrests,” not “prevented crime.”  Cameras are not crime preventers, and have a bad track record of even helping to make arrests.

Cameras may help you sleep at night, but they don’t stop crime.

My solution?  What the LBPD has already figured out.  One officer on a motorcycle cruising the boardwalk at night.  Seemingly, when this story was hot, it was no challenge to find an officer in blue that was up to the job.  They don’t even need to be there every night, all night.  Occasional patrols – or keeping an officer on a short leash near the boardwalk is also a capable crime preventer.  People knowing that the boardwalk is often patrolled will achieve the same effect as always patrolling it.

What do you think: Cameras or Cops?

Arrests Galore Related to Boardwalk Beatings (LBPD cracking the case)

Following up on Friday’s breaking news, that a 16-year-old was arrested related to the (newly disclosed) violent robbery on September 17th, the LBPD has announced six additional arrests.

The September 17th robbery and attack on the boardwalk was first confirmed here by City Manger Theofan after not being included in the police blotter, or in the LBPD press release that followed the September 19th beating and robbery on the boardwalk (which was issued two days after the second attack in three days).

If you look across the details of each individual, the first, Shawn Persaud, was arrested on 10/6.  Then A juvenile, Nasuant Mitchel, Desmond Moore, and Eric Wiener were arrested on 10/7.  Next, Jaquell McNeal of Cambia Heghts, Queens (all others are Long Beach residents) was arrested on the 10th, and then finally Vincent Moore was arrested on the 11th.  You’ve got to laugh to think about what happened in the “interrogations” that happened.  One alleged child-con flipped after another, and they all ratted on each other.  Pretty soon everyone of their friends is going to get locked up if they keep squealing at this pace!

What’s also interesting is that some have been charged with “gang assault” while others have not.

They all sound like real upstanding citizens, and its good to see this group of kid alleged criminals is off the street.  Whatever happened to spending your evenings playing sports in the street or “hanging” with friends?  Aren’t 16-year-olds supposed to be hanging out at Tutti Frutti and watching Jersey Shore?

There has been zero announcement yet if these alleged criminals are related at all to the September 19th boardwalk beating which was first reported here.  Of course, I would assume these kids are connected, considering they successfully jumped someone on the 17th, and then a nearly identical crime happened on the 19th.

Takeaway:  Let’s hope both victims in these cases are having a speedy recovery, and the LBPD has gotten the message loud and clear.  Keep the boardwalk safe!  As they rightly stated in their press release, the boardwalk is the jewel of the city (though we might not treat it as such), let’s keep it that way.

I do want to send a very sincere thanks to all the SBC readers that made this such a big story.  Without your comments, emails, and phone calls here and to City Hall, this sort of crime may have gone unreported and unsolved.  Instead, the LBPD has taken this extremely seriously, stepped up patrols on the boardwalk (which has long been a resident demand) and has made a string of arrests.  Good job, you should all pat yourselves on the back and remember that you can make a difference in your city.

Scott Mandel hit by “Harassment and Vandalism”

And in the latest issue of “What’s going on?,” LB Patch has got a shocking – and awful – story up about what appears to be a campaign of “harrasment and vandalism” around City Council Candidate Scott Mandel’s run for office.

Mandel reported that after a Latino Civic Association awards dinner on September 22nd, he found that his driver’s side mirror was covered in feces, and a pair of men’s underwear was also hanging off the mirror.

That evening after he went to sleep, he was woken by a doorbell ring at midnight.  No one was there, but he found feces on his car windshield, smeared on his front door, and more on his driveway.

Then on September 26, he found more feces on his property.  Four days, two disgusting attacks.  Classy

And of course, there’s more: Darlene Tangney – who is running for County Legislature – found her daughter’s car in front of her house with all its tires all slashed, and as I reported previously, the window of the Long Beach Dem’s Park Ave office was smashed.

All of the above events have had police reports filed to support the claims.  Specifically on Mandel’s, two are with the LBPD, and one is with Nassau County’s 4th precinct.

So, what’s going on?  Mandel has taken the high road and not accused anyone, but certainly has noticed a strange difference between a lack of feces-covered property before he decided to run, and now after his announced run the increase in feces-covered property.

As he says, “I’ve lived in Long Beach for close to a decade and I never had a problem… After I announced I was running in the election and I started campaigning, in less than a week [I’ve been a target] of three different incidents of harassment and vandalism.”

Instead of finger-pointing or childish pranks, Mandel did the right thing – went to the police, and the Nassau County DA, Kathleen Rice.

I can’t even begin to fathom what’s going on here.  Would people in this City really be this petty, this childish, this immature, this pathetic to stoop to disgusting pranks because they disagree with someone’s politics?  What would these morons hope to achieve by doing this?  Scare a grown man out of running for a council position?  Really?  Are we living in an amazing “City by the Sea” or some podunk town where jackasses threaten those they disagree with?

I for one sure hope these attacks stop, or even better the Long Beach Police Department gets to the bottom of this.  But based on their recent track record on arrests (note: there has still not been any arrests or follow-up on the September 19th Boardwalk Beating) I’m not particularly hopeful.  Good job though on those Irish Day arrests, I’m sure finding disorderly drunks in the West End was a challenge.

Now, Mandel is a champ and taking these cowardly actions in stride, but Councilman Len Torres sums up what the real problem is, “People are afraid to put political signs up because they are afraid they may be the next ones to be victimized.”

Attacks like these sour the entire political process and dirty everything that makes small-town democracy good.  Things stop looking like America very quickly when public support for someone different or a different opinion creates a palpable fear of criminal reprisal.  That’s just not the way things should work.

Note:  It took all my willpower to not delve into any scatological humor.  Political intimidation is really not something to joke about.

What’s Going On? (Robberies, Assaults, and Tragic Accidents)

http://youtu.be/f39Zs0gB87c

It looks like we really hit on something that people are just not talking about after we reported that  a jogger was violently beaten by 5 youths and robbed on the boardwalk.  There has been an awful series of crimes and tragedies on our serene strip of beach over the last few months.  To summarize a few that I’m aware of:

The infamous “mini riot” on the beach during Memorial Day weekend.

On September 17th, another robbery occurred on the boardwalk.

Going through the Police blotter on the LBPD’s twitter page I can find arrests for things like assault, “criminal use of a firearm,” petit larceny, and a  16-year-old charged with second degree robbery.

There was the Allegria Rumble in August, covered only here.

Two weeks ago, the window to the Long Beach Democratic Committee Headquarters on Park Ave was smashed and considered vandalism.

There’s of course the horrible story of Kurt Doerbecker, the 23-year-old Point Lookout Resident  who was shot and killed by the Nassau County Police Department after he “charged” officers with a knife.

And in addition to that tragedy, the dog walker who was struck and killed – along with his dog – by a motorist in the West End.

And how can we forget, two parachuters were arrested during Surfpocalypse!

While I’m not claiming there is some blight upon Long Beach, it certainly looks like our City by the Sea has had more than enough crime and tragedy for one summer!

I’m quite happy though that all of your phone calls and emails to the City have created results.  I saw with my own eyes an LBPD car patrolling on the boardwalk last night.  The LBPD is a professional force and are clearly responding to our requests to help keep the boardwalk – and the community – safe.

Residents, be smart and safe.  Most importantly if something happens or you feel threatened, contact the authorities and file a police report.

I’m sure I’ve missed things, so please submit to me (shaun@seabythecity.com) additional incidents.  I do ask though that you make sure there is a police report to support the allegation.

LBPD Statement on Boardwalk Beating

The Long Beach Police Department – some 36 hours after a man was viciously beaten and robbed on the boardwalk while jogging Monday evening –  has released an official statement.

To catch-up, follow our updates here.

Here is their full statement.

The Long Beach Police Department reports the details of a robbery that occurred on the 400 block of East Boardwalk On Monday September 19, 2011, at about 10:44 p.m.  The victim reports he was jogging when he was attacked by a group of about 5 youths.  The youths surrounded the victim and then kicked and punched him resulting in abrasions to his knees and elbow and stole his I-phone.

The perpetrators are described as male, black, 14 – 19 years old.  The perpetrators fled the area on foot and on bicycles. 

 The Long Beach Police Department’s Detective Division is investigating and asking anybody with information in connection with this robbery to contact the Long Beach Police Department’s TIPS line at 705-7370.

Deputy Inspector Bruce Meyer
Public Information Officer

They’ve also updated their facebook page

 

As readers have already pointed out, the account of the injuries doesn’t make much sense.  Especially considering the City Manager emailed us yesterday and said:  “one of whom [the attackers] punched him in the head knocking down, he might have lost consciousness momentarily.

2 Boardwalk Robberies in 3 Days (And What You Can Do)

Clearly, the Boardwalk Beating has hit home for residents of Long Beach.  At last check, the first post which was updated heavily by myself, Anthony, and through the updates and comments of readers of this blog and City Manager Theofan, already received more than 70 comments.

The Facts

A male jogger was attacked by 5 “youths,” may have been beaten to the point of unconsciousness, and was robbed of his iPod and iPhone at 10:20 PM at the boardwalk around Lincoln Blvd.  Two different posts that claim to be close to the victim report a gun was used.  City Manager Theofan denies that there was a gun.

While some media sources have continued to ignore this story that directly impacts the residents of Long Beach, the Herald was able to get the first comment out of City Manager Theofan this afternoon.

The police have yet to issue any sort of formal statement on the matter, and required that we submit a Freedom of Information Law (more commonly referred to as a FOIA request) to receive any information at all on the topic.

City Manager Theofan commented  to this blog that he had his detectives search their crime database, and confirmed that there was a second robbery on the boardwalk on September 17th, though he did not give any additional details.

City Manager Theofan declined to comment if there would be any additional police presence on or around the boardwalk.

What’s I Think

I’m shocked that right now we’re talking about two robberies in three days on a 2.1 mile stretch of boardwalk – one confirmed to be extremely violent  – and we still do not have any assurance from the City government that they are doing anything proactive about this.

When I asked the question the first time, I assumed I would receive the appropriate lip service.  Something like “of course we take this very seriously and are working close with the LBPD to guarantee security on the boardwalk and throughout the City.”

But, I did not receive that from City Manager Theofan or any of the other members of the City Council or the LBPD.  In fact, I didn’t receive any acknowledgment that any steps were in the works or discussed, even after asking the question twice.

What You Can Do

While some in the comments may be suggesting it’s time for citizen vigilantism and packing heat, I recommend a bit more moderate approach.

Tell your friends and family what’s going on.  Make sure they know if they see gangs hanging out on the boardwalk that they take them seriously.

Contact your city government.  Call the Long Beach Police Department if you have any information on these “youths” on the boardwalk, or spot anything at all suspicious.  Every phone call is logged and if the situation is as bad as some commentators suggest, this needs to be logged officially – through the Police Department.  Also, contact other news outlets and ask them to investigate this as well.

LBPD (516) 431-1800, City Hall at  (516) 431-1000

City Manager, Charles Theofan – ctheofan@longbeachny.org,
City Council President Thomas Sofield – tsofield@longbeachny.org,
City Council Vice President Mona Goodman – mgoodman@longbeachny.org,
City Council Member John McLaughlin – jmclaughlin@longbeachny.org,
City Council Member Michael Fagen – mfagen@longbeachny.org,
City Council Member Len Torres – ltorres@longbeachny.org

I do want to finish by reminding everyone how this story came to be.  SeabytheCity reader LBChica spotted a brief blurb about the beating on a Facebook page this morning and alerted me to it.  Soon after I read it, the post was deleted.  It was only through the contributions of readers and residents that any of this happened.  If not for your watchful eyes and ears, a story that effects everyone’s safety would have gone completely unnoticed and unacknowledged.

City Manager Theofan’s Comments on the Boardwalk Beating Part II

City Manager Theofan has replied to my follow-up email with two of his own.  I’ll let you judge his response for yourself, and discuss it in a later post.

My Email:

Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Hi Sir,

Thanks for taking a few minutes to answer my email, I – and my readers, the residents of Long Beach, greatly appreciate it.
Thank you for the official account of the story.  I will update my post accordingly.
I’ve continued to report that a gun was present because that is what I heard from the friend of the victim.  I will consider that claim now suspect based on your input.

After hearing this story, my girlfriend – and several of her friends – are basically terrified to go out for a jog now alone after dark – a privilege we have always been able to enjoy because of the safety and security of Long Beach.
With this violent event last night, and I’m hearing from my readers about a string of other violent events on the Boardwalk in previous weeks, will there be increased patrols or another response by the LBPD?
Will this be added to tonight’s City Council meeting agenda?
Again, I very much appreciate you answering this directly and getting involved in the story.
Thanks,
Shaun
==================================================
His Reply

 

Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 4:55 PM

Shaun…

I have not heard about any other violent crimes having recently taken place on the boardwalk.  I just had one of our detectives check the computer by accessing the boardwalk as the “location” of the crime, nothing was generated for August or September.  I will have a more detailed search conducted.  As with the “gun” allegation, rumors are often based on little or no facts.

Only resolutions to be voted on can be placed on the Council’s agenda, and this is not a “good and welfare” meeting, which permits comment on any matter.

I might make a short statement to correct the rumor that this was an armed robbery.

Charles 

======================================================

Then later, he followed-up again

Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 5:20 PM

Shaun…

Actually there was another robbery on the boardwalk on the 17th of September, that was the only other one, I checked back through June.

Charles Theofan 

City Manager Charles Theofan Comments on the Boardwalk Beating

To his credit, City Manager Charles Theofan has responded to my email sent to all members of the City Council regarding last night’s beating and mugging on the boardwalk.  In the interests of full disclosure and transparency, I am just going to paste my email and his response.  His response is on top and my original email is below.

//////////////////////

 

Shaun….

It is standard operating police procedure in all departments that I have been familiar with…is not to give out information regarding crimes to individuals calling to ask for details about a crime that is under investigation.

The reality is that a male jogger was mugged at 10:20 PM at Lincoln Blvd. by 5 teenagers, one of whom punched him in the head knocking down, he might have lost consciousness momentarily. The ran off and he realized they had taken his iphone. There was NO gun or any weapon involved.

I believe that arrests will be forthcoming.

Charles Theofan

////////////////////////

Sent: Tuesday, September 20, 2011 2:05 PM

To: Charles Theofan; Thomas Sofield Jr.; Mona Goodman; John C. McLaughlin; Michael Fagen; Len Torres
Cc: Anthony
Subject: Boardwalk Violence

All:

I’ve had confirmed that a man was beaten and robbed at gunpoint on the Boardwalk last night.

http://www.seabythecity.com/?p=6951

When we contacted the Police Department for more info, the detective on call told us we needed to submit a written request, in person to receive any details on the matter – no email, no fax. I find that absurd.

Am I to believe that the Police Department spokesman will only comment to the public after receiving a FOIA request?

Please get back to me with any details related to this matter and what the City plans to do.

Thanks,

Shaun

CONFIRMED: Boardwalk Violence – Man Robbed and Beaten, Possibly at Gunpoint

 

 

Update 4:30 PM: City Manger Charles Theofan has responded to our email to the City Council.  Read about it here.  Details below are updated.

UPDATE 3:30 PM: Herald has gotten details from City Manager Theofan.  Added below

UPDATE 3:00 PM:  We’ve been contacted directly by the LBPD after they commented below and they said we’ll just have to “wait for the department to prepare their comments,” but did not confirm whether they will or will not actually make a formal press release on a man being beaten and robbed at gunpoint.

For those of you asking how to become involved, feel free to contact your police department at (516) 431-1800, City Hall at  (516) 431-1000 or email the City Council directly.

City Manager, Charles Theofan – ctheofan@longbeachny.org,
City Council President Thomas Sofield – tsofield@longbeachny.org,
City Council Vice President Mona Goodman – mgoodman@longbeachny.org,
City Council Member John McLaughlin – jmclaughlin@longbeachny.org,
City Council Member Michael Fagen – mfagen@longbeachny.org,
City Council Member Len Torres – ltorres@longbeachny.org

UPDATE 1:25pm: I have a gut feeling the City of Long Beach and LBPD are going to try to bury this one… I just called the LBPD and spoke to someone from the Civillian Records Admin. They want us to submit a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request that has to be drop off regarding this incident. I’m going to do it, but I doubt they’ll get back to me. Oh, but this won’t go away. I road my bike on E. Broadway in that exact area last night around 10:45 and now I am a bit freaked out. FYI: They didn’t deny that this happened.

– Anthony

______

Breaking Newsflash here.  The Beach House has alerted us to a violent robbery last night on the boardwalk in the vicinity of Lincoln Blvd at 10:20PM.  There have been no arrests made, but the City Manger says they will be “forthcoming”

The Herald has confirmed through City Manager Theofan that:

“There was a man jogging on the boardwalk at around 10:20 p.m. by Lincoln Boulevard,” Theofan said. “He was accosted by five youths, and they punched him in the head and stole his iPod and iPhone.”

City Manger Charles Theofan confirms these facts directly with us as well, but disputes that a gun was involved in the crime.

I’ve included the Beach House’s first post below that got the ball rolling.  Thanks for posting this:

good morning everyone. a close friend of ours was robbed and beaten at gun point last night on the long beach boardwalk. we want to wish him a speedy recovery and also, we want the city of long beach to stop the growing epidemic of violent crimes being perpetrated on the boardwalk at night by gangs and thugs! all too often it is happening and it is being swept under the rug in order to protect revenue for the city. yes, i said it! this is our family! this is our city! do something!

There has been a lot of talk in recent months about increasing concerns that something just like this would happen on the boardwalk.  Well, now it has, and the Police will have to do something about it.