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Post-4th of July crackdown

The Fourth of July 2009 may be history, but local cops are already starting to think about next year’s festivities.

To that end, they are trying to get a handle on locations where illegal fireworks were detonated this year.

At the September meeting of the 68th Precinct Community Council, which was held at the station house, 333 65th Street, Deputy Inspector Eric Rodriguez, the precinct’s commanding officer, asked members of the public to let the precinct know such information.

“We had a pretty successful July 4th,” Rodriguez told the group, noting that the precinct, “Did confiscate fireworks,” and opining that, “It wasn’t as loud as last year.”

But, with the goal of making 2010 even better, the precinct wants to develop a list of places where fireworks were set off in 2009.

“We want to start targeting those areas earlier next year,” Rodriguez stressed, noting, “The more information we get, the more we can work on those situations quickly.”

It’s not a question of spoiling people’s fun, he added. “We don’t like to ruin people’s Fourth of July, but we have to take into account that there are little kids there,” Rodriguez told his listeners. “Over the city, there’s always someone with a blown-off finger. There are tragedies all the time, and that’s something we have to avert.

“People like a quiet Fourth of July,” Rodriguez added. “When these fireworks go off, you don’t know where they are going. They go off in people’s yards. They disrupt other people, law-abiding citizens. That’s why we do go after them.”

People with information about fireworks can call the precinct at 718-439-4221. They can also call the members of the precinct’s community affairs unit at 718-439-4228 or 718-439-4220.

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