NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Neighbors want to know what the NYPD plans to do about a danger — knives and needles hidden in plants — that has taken over their neighborhood.
The Bellevue Men’s Shelter in Kips Bay has a haunting aura. People who live nearby said it’s frightening reality are some of the clientele who loiter outside every day.
“There have been some incidents around here which haven’t been pleasant. I have a teenage daughter, and I wouldn’t want her to walk around by here,” one resident said.
People who live across the street showed CBS2 pictures of homeless men lying on the sidewalk outside the building.
“Grabbing young girls, exposing themselves in front of kids, walking across the street and seeing someone with no pants on,” a neighbor said.
Many said they’re frustrated that their quality of life didn’t improve after the NYPD took over security for the city’s shelters in January. On Monday, Commissioner James O’Neill called it a work in progress.
“It’s an ongoing issue, but it’s something that we’re constantly addressing,” he said.
The number of major crimes committed at the Bellevue shelter since the NYPD security takeover hasn’t changed significantly. There were three assaults, and six cases of grand larceny since January. There were also three assaults during the same five month period, along with one homicide and one robbery.
“I have not seen any extra cops around here, and I’ve been here for 45 years,” a neighbor told CBS2’s Hazel Sanchez.
The Human Resources Administration said they’ve added three security posts, outdoor cameras and outreach teams to prevent loitering. Locals said they’re still waiting to see improvement.