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Response times longer for NYPD

September 20, 2012 3:24:55 PM PDT
It's taking New York Police longer to respond to crimes in progress than at any time in the past 10 years.

In the neighborhood it was quiet Thursday, so different from July when shootings skyrocketed across the city, one of them even caught on a cell phone.

Rhonda Bennet's son was injured in that shooting.

She calls it definitely a rough summer, but now she thanks police.

"Oh more police presence. It's overall better. Crime might have gone up but there's less violence right now. Much better than it was," Bennett said.

Although police have targeted neighborhoods and shootings are now back down to a normal level, the overall violent crime figure shows a problem.

Last year, we had 105,000 major felony crimes.

This year it ticked up to 109,000.

"It is scary to note that crime is going up for the first time in 20 years. Once you allow that to happen it takes a long time to turn it around again," City Councilman Peter Vallone, Jr. said.

City Councilman Peter Vallone blames a dramatically smaller police force for the higher violent crime statistics.

The summer of 2012 will forever be noted for its violence, random crime that even led the death of 4-year-old Lloyd Morgan, caught in the cross fire of a shootout.

Still, the mayor talks of a record low murder rate this year, and the council speaker says much the same.

"That's a good thing. I don't want people to feel like it's the wild wild west out there. But that said, when any crime category goes up or when any child is murdered while watching basketball on a weekend afternoon. It's unacceptable," Council Speaker Christine Quinn said.

Also, police response times have jumped from eight and a half minutes to over 9 minutes now.

Compared to the bad old days of 20 years ago, response times and overall crime, violent crime, are all dramatically better. Still there's plenty of worry.

"Because the fact that we're better than we were 20 years ago is not good enough for me. I want to be better every year than we were the before. We're not! And that's a big problem," Vallone said.

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