It’s only the second time ever that the New York Police department has employed metal detectors on the Fourth of July: The first was in 2002 – after the 9/11 terror attacks.
In an effort to keep guns out of the crowds likely to flock to the watch the annual Macy’s-sponsored spectacular this year, the NYPD will require those looking to view the pyrotechnics from FDR Drive along the city’s East Side to pass through metal detectors and submit to a police search, NYPD Chief of Patrol Juanita Holmes announced Thursday.
The city will also close two bridges that span the East River – the Williamsburg Bridge and the 59th Street Bridge. Both take traffic from Manhattan to Brooklyn and typically are clogged with fireworks-viewers as the pyrotechnics are set off from barges in the river.
The moves come as gun violence has surged in the city in recent weeks, with incidents so far this year up 43 percent from the same time last year – from 503 to 71.
Meanwhile, the number of people injured or killed in gunfire is up 36 percent – from 606 to 826.
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NYPD Chief of Patrol Juanita Holmes announced stepped-up security measures for the city’s 4th of July fireworks extravaganza this year, including metal detector screenings
Crime has intensified in New York City as shootings, stabbings and rapes run rampant in the City That Never Sleeps
In the just one week – the one that ended on June 27 – there were 39 shootings and 50 shooting victims, according to NYPD statistics.
Spectators on the Fourth will also be prohibited from bringing Items such as backpacks, large blankets, seats and umbrellas to the fireworks event.
There will be five designated access points for anyone looking to step onto the FDR Drive ‘s to watch the show, and Holmes said, ‘Everyone will be searched at these particular access points.
In addition to the screenings, Holmes said, ‘we will have officers virtually everywhere throughout this event.’
Holmes said those looking to watch the pyrotechnics from FDR Drive will need to submit to police search and are barred from bringing items such as backpacks, large blankets, seats and umbrellas to the event
A week by the numbers: Crime running rampant in NYC
New York City crime figures for the week ending June 27, 2021: the latest available:
- Murders – 7
- Rapes – 34
- Robberies – 279
- Felony assaults – 482
- Shooting victims – 50
- Shooting incidents – 39
‘Beyond our uniformed officers we will also some plainclothes officer out there,’ she said as well as K-9, bomb squad, harbor patrol and counterterrorism teams.
She maintained, however, ‘At this time there are absolutely no credible threats.’
Macy’s, which is the event’s chief sponsor, makes no mention of the screenings, in its FAQ for the event.
Police did not immediately return a request for comment on what prompted the stepped-up security.
Holmes’ announcement comes after a week of surging gun violence in the city, which from June 23 through through June 29, saw incidents such as a Marine hit by a ricocheting bullet in Times Square and a three teenagers wounded in a drive-by shooting of a graduation party.
On June 23 A man dismounted a dirt bike and opened fire at an Acura SUV in the Wakefield section of the Bronx. A bullet passed through the open driver’s-side window but the 25-year-old in the car is not hit.
Additionally, Psalms Ajayi, 31, was shot dead on Fulton Avenue in the Bronx. Neighbor Timmy Johnson, 30, is arrested for his murder. No reason was given for the shooting.
On June 24 an innocent bystander was caught in crossfire as she stands at the rear of a housing project in the Claremont Village section of the Bronx. The 27-year-old woman was taken to the hospital in stable condition.
NYPD released video of the wild shootout in the Bronx after a graduation party on June 25
On Friday, June 25, a 50-year-old man was robbed in broad daylight in the Bronx. The suspect grabbed the man’s necklace and ran off. As the victim ran after him the assailant took out a gun and fired a single shot but missed
Samuel Poulin is the Marine who was shot in the back in Times Square Sunday and is the newlywed son of former Pentagon official Col. Jack Jensen
On June 25 five people, including three teenagers, were wounded by gunfire in a drive-by shooting at a graduation party in the Bronx
Angel Caraballo, 19, was shot and killed in an apartment building in the beachside community of Rockaway in Queens.
A man also opened fire aiming several bullets into a crowd of people in the Fordham area of the Bronx. Two men were hit, one in the ankle and one in the thigh.
Additionally, a 50-year-old man was robbed in broad daylight in the Bronx. The suspect grabbed the man’s necklace and ran off. As the victim ran after him the assailant took out a gun and fired a single shot but misses.
On June 27 Marine Samuel Poulin was rushed to the hospital after being hit by a ricocheting bullet on 45 Street near Times Square. Two rival gangs of CD sellers were believed to have gotten into an argument and one man opened fire.
Additionally, Keyshawn Cureton, 21, was fatally shot multiple times after getting into an argument on Malcolm X Boulevard in Harlem.
On June 28 A 19-year-old was shot as he played basketball in an annual tournament in the Amsterdam Houses in west midtown, Manhattan. He was not believed to be the targe, police said.
Map shows locations of shootings in New York City on June 29
Critics blame Mayor Bill de Blasio and anti-police sentiment for rise in crime
Critics put the blame for the ever-rising tide of crime on the shoulders of Mayor Bill de Blasio and politicians in Albany for leading anti-police sentiment. ‘It’s a direct result of far-left policy being put into action,’ the city’s sole Republican in Congress told DailyMail.com in an exclusive interview.
‘The bail reform law has been a disaster,’ said Rep Nicole Malliotosis. ‘People with extensive criminal histories are arrested for major crimes and then released and are back out on the streets.’
Critics put the blame for the rising crime on the shoulders of Mayor Bill de Blasio and politicians in Albany for leading anti-police sentiment. De Blasio pictured with his wife Chirlane McCray
And Ed Mullins, president of the NYPD’s Sergeant Benevolent Association added: ‘Nobody is talking about why this is happening. You have to address the real problems, enforce laws, have District Attorneys prosecute crimes and have bail that actually works.
‘The cops aren’t allowed to do anything,’ added Mullins. ‘This administration doesn’t want confrontation. They’re afraid of any backlash, any protests.
‘The police department is trying to appease the people who are violating the law, but we’re learning that appeasement doesn’t work.’
Nothing stirred New Yorkers’ consciences more than seeing security camera footage of two little kids — five-year-old Christian and his sister Mia, 13 — caught in crossfire as Michael Lopez allegedly opened fire in the Bronx.
‘The images of a 13-year-old girl shielding her 5-year-old brother from bullets fired by a gunman in broad daylight on a Thursday afternoon, that heart-wrenching video was seen around the world,’ said Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark.
Felony assaults and murders in New York City have gone up this year compared to the same period in 2020, according to NYPD data
‘The bail reform law has been a disaster,’ said Rep Nicole Malliotosis. ‘People with extensive criminal histories are arrested for major crimes and then released and are back out on the streets’
The children had gone to buy bread for their parents when they were nearly killed as Lopez, 27 — an alleged member of the Make It Happen Boyz gang — opened fire as he chased another man.
Lopez was out on parole for attempted murder, NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig revealed after his arrest — his fifth.
But that was only the start of the crimewave, so violent that President Joe Biden directed COVID funds to be deployed in New York and other major cities to combat it.
There was 21-year-old U.S. Marine 2nd Lt. Samuel Poulin, visiting the city from Upstate Northville, New York, with his family, who was hit by a ricocheting bullet as a dispute between two CD sellers in Times Square allegedly erupted.
The world was shocked when video went viral of two children — five-year-old Christian and his sister Mia, 13 — caught in crossfire as Michael Lopez allegedly opened fire in the Bronx
That happened on Sunday afternoon as the so-called Center of the Universe was packed with thousands of tourists, stragglers from the day’s Pride festivities and locals.
‘I heard a loud pop, I thought it was a firecracker,’ Sydney Santana, a visitor from New Orleans told DailyMail.com. ‘Then I saw all the detectives come in and I realized it was something more serious.’
Security camera footage shows a man appear to fire twice as he ran down 45th Street near the famed Marriott Marquis Hotel.
Police are now flooding Times Square — the busiest tourist area in the country —with dozens of extra cops as Poulin’s shooting was the second there in two months. A 4-year-old girl and two women were hit by stray bullets at noon on May 8.
But that means taking cops from other areas. Rep. Malliotosis said her district, which includes Staten Island where many cops live, is being punished by having fewer patrols.
‘And I bet the city council member who represents Times Square voted to defund the police,’ she said. That politician, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, did not return DailyMail.com’s request for comment. He voted to slash the NYPD budget by $1 billion year.