Tuesday, November 30, 2010
For the second time in about a week, a 10 year old kid has been robbed in Crown Heights. In the first case, which occurred on November 25, a boy was coming home from yeshiva and was approached by a man who was about 20 years of age who was riding a bicycle. The man asked the boy for the time and when the boy said he didn't have the time then demanded his knapsack. In the course of the incident, the man then fled on his bicycle with the boy's knapsack, running him over and causing some injuries as he did so.
The second incident was a good deal more serious. A 10 year old boy was grabbed from behind by an unidentified assailant in front of the laundromat in front of the laundromat at Troy Avenue and Crown Street. Crown Heights.Info described the incident as follows.
"The terrifying incident took place at around 4:15pm in front of the Laundromat on Crown street and Troy Avenue, where the boy was suddenly grabbed from behind and was told calmly “don’t scream, I have a gun…” and the mugger pressed a hard object into his back “…can you feel it?” paralyzed with fear the boy nodded, “hand over your phone, and then keep walking away calmly and do not yell, if you do I will shoot you.” And the mugger ran off."
This is the second crime against a minor in less than a week. Being threatened with a gun is a traumatising experience. Crown Heights.Info should be applauded for highlighting these incidents, because all too often, violent crimes in Crown Heights have been classified out of existence. How this gunpoint robbery and the earlier bicycle attack will be handled by police depends in good part on how they are classified. Too many Crown Heights residents have been stonewalled when attempting to simply get a complaint number for a crime committed against them. Too many times, crimes get "dumbed down" to minor offenses.
A possible solution to this would be for Crown Heights residents to register their complaints not only with police but to share the same information with a civilian, non governmental organization that would check police records to assure that the crime was recorded correctly and that the police report was not "lost" or misclassified as something trivial. This could be a function of a civilian patrol or a community group.
Crime hurts everyone here in our community. Despite the fact that the last two incidents were "black on white" does not negate the fact that many African Americans and Hispanics in our community have been victimised as well. The war on crime should bring us together, not set us against each other. No child in our community should fear walking to or from school. And that is why all of us who live in Crown Heights must take the latest incidents seriously. Sphere: Related Content