The DNAinfo archives brought to you by WNYC.
Read the press release here.

INTERACTIVE: Find Out How Much Crime Was Reported in Your Local Park

By Katie Honan | September 9, 2014 7:26am
 Crime in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park was the highest in the city during the second quarter of the year, statistics show. 
Crime in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park was the highest in the city during the second quarter of the year, statistics show. 
View Full Caption
DNAinfo/Danielle Tcholakian

CORONA  When it comes to crime in parks, Queens is king.

The borough's largest park had the highest crime rates in the city this spring followed by Manhattan's Randall's Island, according to newly-released NYPD statistics.

Flushing Meadows-Corona Park topped the list with 27 incidents of major crime — defined as murder, robbery, rape, felony assault, burglary, auto theft and grand larceny between April and June.

The crimes included 15 grand larcenies, according to the NYPD's quarterly statistics for 30 of the city's parks.

There were also six car thefts, four felony assaults and two robberies.


Astoria pet owners push for better dog run

Costumed characters would need ID and background check under new bill

Bratton opposes law to make chokeholds illegal

Hoarder in rent-stabilized apartment died with $18M

Randall's Island was next in the city with 21 reported incidents, the majority of which were grand larcenies. 

Central Park — which had 58 reported crimes through Aug. 31  — was not counted in the NYPD park crime report because it has its own police precinct, officials said.

Most of the incidents in Central Park — 32 — were grand larcenies but there were 14 robberies and 8 felony assaults as well.

It was not immediately clear how many occurred in the second quarter of the year.

By comparison, many city parks were crime-free, including Cunningham Park in Bayside, Canarsie Park in Canarsie and Fresh Kills Park on Staten Island, according to NYPD statistics.

Van Cortlandt Park, which totals more than 1,140 acres, was the site of only three reported crimes all spring, according to the NYPD.

And Forest Park — which last year was the site of six taser-point rape attacks — had just two robberies.

Check out our map of crime in parks across the city according to NYPD statistics from April 1 until July 31, 2014.



 crime in New York City's Parks

The NYPD did not respond to multiple requests for comment. 

The report stems from a bill passed last year by former City Councilman Peter Vallone mandating that the NYPD track and release crime stats for every city park that takes up more than an acre of land.

But many large parks in the city weren't included on the NYPD list, including Fort Greene Park which is more than 30 acres. The 2,800-acres of the Staten Island Greenbelt also wasn't included in the statistics. 

Vallone, who now works as a special assistant to the commissioner of the state's Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, first introduced a bill to track crime in parks in 2005.

The most recent bill was vetoed by former Mayor Bloomberg last year, but the current city council overrode the veto in January.

The goal was to gradually increase the number of parks included in the tabulation. The police department hasn't released those statistics yet, however. 

"It defies logic that the NYPD has the technology to do body cameras, but it still can't figure out a way to report crime stats in parks," said Vallone. 

"A good way for new leadership to improve transparency would be for them to start giving the public the info the law requires."

A source blamed much of the crime in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park the biggest green space in Queens at nearly 900 acres — on high-profile events at the park's many private facilities, including Citi Field, the USTA Center and the Queens Zoo.

A spokesman for the Parks Department said Flushing Meadows-Corona Park is currently staffed with a portion of the borough's 28 Parks Enforcement Patrol officers and 49 seasonal security officers, and will add more next year thanks to a budget boost.

There are currently 13 PEP officers and 16 seasonal security workers at Flushing Meadows and the Aquatic Center also has four PEP officers and two seasonal employees, according to a source.

"Additional seasonal security staff can be deployed in response to park conditions or for special events, and seasonal staffing levels are increased during the peak summer season," the spokesman said.