INWOOD — Uptowners can expect to see more police in Inwood Hill Park during the summer months to address an uptick in lawlessness in recent years, but the proposed beefed up patrols aren't enough for state Sen. Adriano Espaillat.
Espaillat wrote to Police Commissioner Ray Kelly on March 5 asking the NYPD for more policing during the summer, when littering, noise, public urination and unsanctioned barbecuing become issues.
The letter comes on the heels of an online petition created by residents demanding more enforcement.
Kelly, in a written response dated April 24, said that officers would be shifted from schools to parks during the summer months and plainclothes officers from the 34th precinct and borough office would visit the greenspaces during their daily patrols.
In addition, Kelly said that 34th precinct commander Deputy Inspector Barry Buzzetti would dedicate an additional officer to exclusively monitor park activity.
"Please be assured that, in accordance with all of our quality-of-life initiatives, the Department is fully committed to patrolling and protecting New York City's parks," Kelly wrote, adding that not all measures taken by the Department are apparent.
The answer wasn't good enough for Espaillat.
"I'm glad the department is allocating additional resources for the summer months, but in light of the issues we've seen in Inwood Hill Park, the usual summer increase isn't enough," Espaillat said in a statement to DNAinfo New York. "Neighbors are alarmed by the spike in public drinking and other quality of life issues, and we need to keep working together so the city makes this a priority."
The residents' petition currently has over 440 signatures.
"I love this park and often spend the day there and frequent the businesses nearby," wrote one petitioner. "I no longer feel safe or happy with the motor bikes and the men changing their clothes and urinating on the trees."