MOTT HAVEN — A new commanding officer is heading to the 40th Precinct, making it the third South Bronx precinct in roughly one week with a new leader.
Inspector Carlos Valdez will leave the 40th Precinct in Mott Haven and head over to Queens South. He will be replaced by Deputy Inspector Brian Hennessy, who previously served as commanding officer of the 115th Precinct in Jackson Heights, police said.
Deputy Inspector Michele Irizarry is moving from the 10th Precinct in Chelsea to Jackson Heights, according to Hennessy.
The move comes on the heels of Capt. Louis DeCeglie taking over command of the 41st Precinct from Deputy Inspector Martine Materasso, who just replaced Inspector Brian Mullen as commanding officer at the 44th Precinct.
Valdez had a relatively brief tenure at the 40th Precinct, taking over last summer for Deputy Inspector Lorenzo Johnson, who was replaced in the wake of a scandal at the precinct over underreporting crime statistics.
The 40th Precinct has had a relatively violent year so far, with crime up by more than 25 percent in every major category as of June 12 except for auto thefts, which are down by about 30 percent.
Robberies, felony assaults and grand larcenies had risen in the 115th Precinct as of June 12 compared to a year ago, but burglaries had gone down, and rapes and auto thefts remained flat. The precinct had not seen any murders as of June 12.
Hennessy, who took over at the 115th Precinct in the fall of 2014, confirmed the move at a community council meeting Tuesday. He's spent the entirety of his nearly 20-year career with the NYPD in Queens, but said he was excited for the move to The Bronx.
"It's been an absolute pleasure to serve this community," he said.