NYC mayor admits a number of migrants committing crimes
New York City Mayor Eric Adams remarked in a press conference Tuesday that migrants were reported committing crimes and participating in a "robbery pattern."
New York City experienced a banner year in the fight against rising violent crime, flooding the streets with new teams of police officers despite fierce resistance from law enforcement reform groups.
New York City murder numbers dropped 12% in 2023 compared to the previous year while shootings fell 25%, according to numbers released by the New York City Police Department, with all five boroughs experiencing a decline in shootings.
The good news was publicized in a recent op-ed by the Wall Street Journal, which noted that New York City Mayor Eric Adams has credited the city’s more aggressive approach to policing as being responsible for the enhanced safety.
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New York City Mayor Eric Adams (Lev Radin/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Much of that increased police presence has come from the city’s Neighborhood Safety Teams, a program that Adams launched in 2022 to replace plainclothes teams that were disbanded in the city in the wake of the 2020 George Floyd protests. Those officers have been credited with seizing thousands of illegal firearms throughout the city in 2023 through stops of pedestrians the officers suspected of being armed and dangerous, the Wall Street Journal report noted.
The officers are required to have a reasonable suspicion before they approach an individual, which could include a tip from a neighbor or directly witnessing aggressive behavior. They also wear body cameras and are required to question every suspect before conducting a pat down.
But the Neighborhood Safety Teams have also faced fierce criticism from some groups, who accuse the officers of disproportionately targeting minority residents.
But Charles “Cully” Stimson, a senior legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation, argued that many communities plagued by crime would welcome an increase in police presence.
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“They want more police in their communities, they don’t want fewer police,” Stimson told Fox News Digital. “They want police who look like them, police who they know, police who they trust, but they want the criminals out.”
An NYPD officer sits in a marked vehicle. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
One such group calling to roll back the Neighborhood Safety Teams in New York is Communities United for Police Reform, which, according to the Wall Street Journal, cited an independent audit of the teams that showed many stops came with no good reason for suspicion and that the data indicated racial bias, with 97% of stopped suspects being Black or Hispanic.
Stimson argued that citing such statistics can be misleading, noting that the demographics of neighborhoods impacted by rising crime are prone to be populated by minorities.
“It’s an uncomfortable but basic reality that Blacks commit a disproportionate number of violent crimes and crimes in general. You’ll never hear Communities United for Police Reform admit that, but it’s true,” Stimson said. “The sad reality is that the other side of that coin is that a disproportionate number of murder victims in the inner city are Black men who are killed by Black men.”
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The Wall Street Journal also pushed back against the notion of bias, noting that the 34 special units operate specifically in New York City’s most high-crime neighborhoods, which also are disproportionately Black and Hispanic areas of the city.
“The fact that these neighborhoods are 97%, 95% Black, and 97% of the people they stop temporarily are Black or Hispanic, that makes sense,” Stimson said.
For his part, Adams won his 2021 bid for mayor largely on a public-safety platform and often cites that some of the city’s most crime-ridden areas supplied the bulk of his votes. A two-decade veteran of New York City law enforcement himself, Adams celebrated the city’s officers after the release of the 2023 numbers.
“Your officers took nearly 6,500 illegal firearms off our streets in 2023,” Adams said, according to the Wall Street Journal.
NYPD Crime Scene Unit vehicle (Peter Gerber)
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Meanwhile, Stimson took issue with groups attempting to reform American policing, noting New York City’s new strategy is yet another example of the constant evolution of tactics and police departments across the country are constantly engaged in voluntarily.
“Who isn’t for police reform?” Stimson said. “Police departments, there’s 18,000 of them across the country, have been and are in the process of reforming themselves every single day.”