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Forest Hills Crime Is Down, Defying Citywide Trend

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | January 11, 2013 12:17pm
 Capt. Thomas Conforti, who oversees the 112th Precinct, at a Community Board 6 meeting on Jan. 10, 2013
Capt. Thomas Conforti, who oversees the 112th Precinct, at a Community Board 6 meeting on Jan. 10, 2013
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DNAinfo/Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska

QUEENS — The 112th Precinct, which covers Forest Hills and Rego Park, saw a drop in crime last year, bucking a citywide uptick, police officials said.

Overall, crime in the area fell about 4 percent compared to the previous year, said the precinct's commander, Capt. Thomas Conforti, during a Community Board 6 meeting on Wednesday night — putting it among 15 of the 76 precincts where major crimes decreased.

Citywide, crime increased by about 3 percent in 2012, officials said.

The 112th Precinct recorded a decrease in most major crime categories, including the number of murders, which fell from two in 2011 to none in 2012, according to police statistics.

Rapes decreased by 40 percent from 10 in 2011 to six in 2012, and fewer cars were stolen (81 vehicles in 2012, compared to 103 in 2011, a decrease of about 21 percent).

Felony assaults, however, increased by about 30 percent, from 62 in 2011 to 81 in 2012. Conforti explained that the spike was caused by a change in how the police classify assaults, increasing the types of incidents that are considered felonies.

The number of misdemeanor assaults also rose by almost 26 percent, from 182 in 2011 to 229 incidents in 2012.

Overall crime in the 112th Precinct decreased despite a summertime spike and a recent pattern that involved iPhone thefts.

In the two-week period from Dec. 20 to Jan. 2, there were seven iPhone thefts in the area around Queens Boulevard and 67th Avenue, Conforti said.

Last Tuesday, the police made an arrest in that case. The suspect, who fit a description given by victims, was picked up near the intersection of Queens and Yellowstone boulevards, a busy residential area that includes a park and a grocery store.

The man was later picked out of a lineup and charged, Conforti said.

Conforti said that the suspect was part of an organized group of thieves and at least two other suspects might still be at large. However, there have been no incidents since the arrest, he added.