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Robberies Down, But 94th Remains On Guard

Robberies and burglaries are down in Williamsburg, but 94th Precinct officers are urging residents to remain vigilant as the holiday season approaches.

“The holidays are coming and you should be cognizant of leaving your property unattended,” said 94th Precinct Deputy Inspector Dennis Fulton.

In the past month, robberies are down 50 percent compared with the same period last year, with only 7 committed in 2009 compared with 14 in 2008. So far this year, robberies are on a downward trend by 15 percent, and have dropped 26.7 percent over the past two years.

“We had four robberies on the Northside around the train stations targeting people holding cell phones. It’s people with visible property, possibly females with a phone, maybe coming home from a bar,” said Fulton.

Burglaries, a nettlesome problem in Williamsburg, were down 28.6 percent over a one month period, with 10 recorded this month compared with 14 over the same period last year. For the year, there has been a slight uptick in burglaries, at 1.6 percent, though a 9 percent decrease over a two-year period.

“In one burglary, someone used a fire escape, found an open window and took a laptop and some jewelry that they threw into a bag,” said Fulton.

At a 94th Precinct Community Council meeting held at the Capital Bank building (807 Manhattan Ave.), Fulton warned that while more officers will be on Williamsburg’s streets during the holiday shopping season, so will thieves.

“This is what they do for a living: steal your property,” said Fulton. “Keep your wallet in your front pocket. Have you ever seen the ‘Seinfeld’ episode where George won’t empty his wallet? I look ridiculous, but I’m paranoid. When I’m on the train, I’m constantly checking my front pocket.”

Fulton also warned residents to monitor their consumption of alcohol when driving home from holiday parties this winter, or they might find themselves in the same place as other perpetrators.

“If you go to a holiday party, it only takes a couple of drinks to get arrested,” said Fulton. “You don’t want to get arrested. It’s a traumatic experience.”

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