September 27 & 28, 2010, New Rochelle, NY - Habitat For Humanity of Westchester Executive Director Jim Killoran was at the New Rochelle train station on Monday and Tuesday this week, looking for signatures for a petition requesting New Rochelle Police Department patrolmen back ‘walking the beat’ and out of patrol cars in the vicinity of Main Street/North Avenue intersection and the train/bus station.
Once again there’s a clamoring for the return of foot patrols. With gang-related activity and local drug trafficking on the rise, it is not unreasonable for businesses and the general public to call for a resurgence of patrolmen walking the neighborhood.
Many of those that signed the petitions sited an increased fear of illegal activity. One person even cited the seemingly endless number of gun violence incidents in Newark, NJ and wondered out loud if New Rochelle was going to begin to see the same kinds of problems.
According to Mr. Killoran, years ago, there used to be two police stations – one of them on Lawton Street the downtown area and foot patrolmen were a constant sight back then. With a problematic budget crunch years ago, the downtown station house disappeared and so did the patrolmen. With more than 3,000 people new residents in this district in recent years, some people think it’s high time the NRPD resume using shoe leather.
The story broke on Talk Of The Sound blog on September 18 with a story about a 23-year old man that was killed in front of Chase Bank at 270 Main Street (North Ave.) in broad daylight. He was chased from 311 to 270 Main Street and after a fight ensued, he was stabbed at 2:30 pm, across the street from the New Rochelle Transportation Center.
Many businesses, individuals, condo and rental building owners are collecting petitions at many locations. The Bank Of America, The Us Post Office, Kaffeine, Smokes For Less, Chase Bank, Trump Towers, 25 Leroy Place, 543 Main Street, and The Avalon are just a few.
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