NYPD Locks Down Harlem Neighborhood
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Residents of a Harlem neighborhood are upset about an overnight lockdown by the NYPD in an effort to curb violence in the area.
For the past two weeks, police have barricaded West 129th Street from 5th Avenue to Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard from dusk until dawn.
WCBS 880′s Paul Murnane reports
Police set up the barricades in hopes of preventing more bloodshed after the killing of 25-year-old Ackeem Green, who was shot while playing basketball on the St. Nicholas basketball courts on June 3.
“We are trying to deter a retaliatory shooting which was planned on that street, according to community members who came to the police,” NYPD Deputy Commissioner Paul Browne said in a statement.
Three others were wounded, but survived.
Now, residents must show identification to prove they live in the neighborhood in order to get past the barricades overnight.
1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg reports
Many living on the block said they are happy to have the extra police presence.
“Something has to be done because there’s just been a rash of shootings,” resident Ronald Day told WCBS 880′s Paul Murnane.
“I feel very safe with them here,” another resident told 1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg. “I’m very glad they’re here.”
But others called it cumbersome and inconvenient.
“I don’t see a reason for it, I think it’s unnecessary” said one woman.
“It’s like a living hell,” said one man.
The NYPD said methods like this have been used in other neighborhoods in the past.
Community Board No. 10 said it wasn’t aware of a big groundswell of complaints from the West 129th Street area, Murnane reported.
But in an email shared by one resident, one neighbor asked for calls to local officials and a church pastor said she wanted an opinion from her congregation.
On the street, one resident was weary.
“People don’t want to come visit. They don’t want to come and see me. They don’t want to come see the rest of my family because they don’t want to be subjected to the harassment,” he told Murnane. “It’s just harassment.”
A spokesman for City Councilwoman Inez Dickens told WCBS 880 that the barricades won’t be a long-term feature, but a report in the New York Post said it could be months.
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