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NYPD Touts Violence-Free J'Ouvert After Security Increase

By Kate Pastor | September 5, 2017 6:36pm | Updated on September 6, 2017 9:47am

THE BRONX — Heightened security at this year's J'Ouvert celebration led to zero violent incidents tied to the pre-carnival event, despite a double shooting early Monday just blocks from the West Indian Day Parade route.  

Arrests linked to J'Ouvert — the formerly violence-prone pre-dawn event that acts as a precursor to the West Indian Day Parade —  dropped to seven this year from 12 in 2016, including one gun arrest compared to seven last year, the NYPD said. 

Arrests along the West Indian Day Parade route also fell, from 18 last year to four this year, police said. One man was shot and another stabbed along the parade route Monday, though both were expected to survive.  

Earlier in the morning, around 5 a.m., two men were shot in front of 1692 Union St. in Crown Heights as locals in the neighborhood were setting up for a barbecue, police and sources said.

Authorities said that the shooting followed a dispute that took place on the block. Sources said Monday the two men were not part of the West Indian celebrations and police said the shooting was not related to J'Ouvert.

"There was a lot of changes, and I think it really paid off," NYPD Commissioner James P. O'Neill said at an unrelated press conference Tuesday, adding that the city would use the same enhanced security plan for the events moving forward. 

In addition to significantly increasing security at this year's festivities, J'Ouvert was moved into the daylight hours. 

Mayor Bill de Blasio noted that the enforcement "definitely struck the right balance" after the new security plan arose out of discussions with community leaders, clergy members and elected officials.