Residents question safety of New York City parks after murder in Van Cortlandt Park, alleged rape in Crotona Park

Residents are wondering about safety in New York City parks after a 62-year-old man was found dead in Van Cortlandt Park and a teen allegedly raped in Crotona Park yesterday.

Residents are wondering about safety in New York City parks after a 62-year-old man was found dead in Van Cortlandt Park and a teen allegedly raped in Crotona Park yesterday. (6/28/13)

BROOKLYN - Residents are wondering about safety in New York City parks after a 62-year-old man was found dead in Van Cortlandt Park and a teen allegedly raped in Crotona Park yesterday.

Jeff Croft, president of NYC Parks Advocates, says that the high temperatures could be a factor in crime, as the crime rate seems to go up during summer months.

“In Crotona Park alone, since 2008, there has been 102 major crimes, including 62 robberies,” says Croft. “That is just through the roof."

Joe Puelo, president of Local 93, says the reason that crime is on the rise is because there aren't enough enforcement officers in the parks.

The Parks Department union president tells News 12 that there are only three parks officers who patrol all the parks in the Bronx.

However, many of the crimes are committed at times where there are no officers on duty. Officers work from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., but the alleged rape in Crotona Park, for example, occurred at 5 a.m.
 

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