Lt. Gordon lead the PSA1 meeting on July 14th with some new participants in the crowd of 30 at Aria Hospital.
The issue of being denied a block party permit came up early and took up a lot of the discussion. Residents on block that have been identified as a nuisance block can be denied a permit by the District Captain. This can happen even after they have paid for the permit and put money on the bounce houses and organized the event. Lt. Gordon recommends contacting Captain Luca directly since it is his call.
Complaints about 911 calls that find no response by police are the result of higher priorities being addressed at the same time. Illegal parking is not going to be answered ahead of an aggravated assault. Doesn’t that mean we need more police???
Gordon says many crimes are crimes of opportunity so do your part personally to prevent crime and don’t make yourself a target. Lock your doors and windows and don’t walk down the street holding your iPhone out for the first guy coming along to grab it and run. Don’t make yourself an easy target.
Participants at Frankford Forward meeting have already had Town Watch training and Gordon would like to add more participants from other blocks to be trained.
Residents expressed concern about the Democratic Party convention taking police away from Frankford. Gordon reported that the department is using overtime to add manpower to the convention while maintaining police presence. He did say that the recent attacks on police have had the effect of reducing the available patrols since officers have been patrolling 2 to a car. We do not know how long that will need to continue.
Bridesburg resident asked about enforcement of the No Trucks ordinance on Richmond Street recently put into effect. Gordon referred him to Officer Crosson the Community Relations officer.
The next PSA1 meeting will be held on August 25th at 7 PM at Aria Hospital.
The first question asked of Lt. Duane Gordon at the 15th District PSA1 meeting on June 23rd was about the string of homicides and aggravated assaults in the area of Bridge Street from Torresdale Avenue to Charles Street. Lt. Gordon could not comment about the details of the investigation except to say that there are leads that are being investigated.
Ronald Ryan made a presentation on Town Watch and it was agreed that he would attend the Frankford Forward meeting on July 27th to train their participants. Stephen Bowne has been forming a town watch within that group and those members are ready for training.
Allen Leppert made a presentation on the Civilian Police Academy which allows civilians to learn more about police work by attending a multi week course at the police academy. It is 2 hours per week for 13 weeks beginning on September 7th. For further information, contact Allen through the Gazette at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Margaret Street resident complained about lack of enforcement by police of parking and extreme noise violations in that area.
Joe Krause raised the issue of two armed robberies in Northwood in June. Residents want a dedicated patrol in that area. Lt. Gordon said this is an issue for Tactical who will then put out plain clothes cops into the area. Krause was not entirely satisfied with that response.
Lt. Gordon spoke about the problem of making arrests only to see the suspects out on bail the next day. He says citizens have to monitor what the judges do after the arrest is made in order to see how the system works. Judges are elected officials.
The next 15th District PSA1 meeting will be held on July 14th at Aria Hospital at 7 PM. This is earlier than usual in the month and had to be rescheduled due to the Democratic National Convention being held at the end of the month.
PSA1 meeting tonight at 7 PM at Aria Hospital. Several issues on interest to the community should be discussed.
- 15th District Captain John McCloskey has been reassigned and a new Captain took over this past Monday.
- There have now been 5 homicides in Frankford since the beginning of the year.
- Concerns raised at the last PSA1 meeting which was held in Bridesburg will be addressed.
Come out and meet your neighbors and the police officers who patrol your neighborhood.
The PSA1 meeting is usually held at Aria Hospital on the last Thursday of the month at 7 PM. It had been mentioned during the December meeting that moving it to Bridesburg would bring out more folks from Bridesburg who hesitate to come to Frankford. In truth, parking is harder around the hospital. It was decided to try this idea at the January meeting. The meeting for February 25 would be held at the Bridesburg Boys and Girls Club. This would also be a Captain’s Town Hall meeting as Captain McCloskey would be attending.
For those of you unfamiliar with the PSA1 meeting, this is an opportunity to meet directly with the 15th District Police to discuss your concerns and hear what the police are doing in the community.
You know that while Philadelphia is a city of neighborhoods, we tend to stay within our own boundaries. But soon you realize that the concerns we share are the same. Over 40 people attended the meeting.
We heard about the lack of police presence and how long it takes for officers to respond to 911 calls, fights in front of bars where patrons are told to go home by the police but come right back or are there the next night again, for sure, and parents’ concerns walking kids home from school passing cars where the oldest and, probably, first business is being conducted in parked cars. Squatters in homes, illegal parking, drug dealers scurrying inside when police are near but boldly outside again once the coast is clear continues. Cars going way too fast in the neighborhoods and people wonder why nothing ever changes.
These meetings can get heated and people want to make phone calls and protest and that will get attention. But does that only work for the short term? The attention span of the news media is even quicker than ours moving on to the next “big” story.
So, great ideas are born and take shape. Let us be real – the 15th Police District is the largest geographically in the city and it has the most crime. Maybe those two facts are related but either way, we know our problems won’t get better left alone. What can we do to support the 15th Police District and its officers? Bill Lorch of Bridesburg, Veronica Daniel of Frankford and myself, Pat Smiley, suggested we involve all of our stakeholders in a larger meeting. Let’s see if PSA2 and PSA3 are interested in working together. Let’s invite our community and elected officials to work on real strategies and solutions to our problems. It seems we talk and tell our concerns but never get to real resolution. What will that take? All of us working together. Before leaving, those gathered shared their contact information for future follow-up.
State Representative John Taylor was there that night and he was scheduled to meet with Mayor Kenney on Friday, 2/26, in the afternoon. We drafted a letter in time for him to deliver it personally to the Mayor. Letters were also written and mailed on Friday to State Senator Tina Tartaglione, State Representative Jason Dawkins, City Councilman Bobby Henon, City Councilwoman Maria D. Quiñones-Sanchez and Police Commissioner Richard Ross.
We know the power of the Frankford Gazette. If anyone from PSA2 and PSA3 is reading this, please reach out to us. We have calls in to contact you.
We’re sharing our letter because we want you to be a part of this, too. If you would like to read it, click here. We’re convinced, like our Founders’ were, that the power lies with the people but we must use it. Our power lies in our united voices. We will keep you posted.