In Aftermath of Violence, Kelly Says City Parks Are Safe

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

NYPD, New York Police Department, police (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly reassured New Yorkers on Tuesday that the city’s parks are safe in the aftermath of two recent rapes in Manhattan parks.

Kelly described the city’s parks as “extremely safe” and said rapes involving strangers is down 8 percent over last year.   

Last Saturday, at dawn, a 21-year old woman was beaten and raped by a stranger in Hudson River Park, police said.

The incident comes about a week after a 73-year old woman was raped in Central Park at Strawberry Fields in broad daylight.

Kelly called the Saturday morning rape a “terrible incident,” but noted that it occurred at 5:15 a.m. when it was still dark.

“Obviously you have to use common sense, but the parks are safe,” he said.

Overall, city parks had a smattering of violence this summer.

The suspects in both the Central Park rape and Hudson River Park cases have been arrested and await trial.


Stephen Nessen


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Comments [2]

k webster from nyc

“Obviously you have to use common sense, but the parks are safe..."

Implying that a woman lacks "common sense" because she uses a park at dawn is essentially saying women are only welcome into our parks between the hours of ...what hours are we free from the threat of rape?
What if we only allow women in the parks between the hours of 10pm and 5am? Since we are not the ones raping other people?

If the parks aren't safe at 5:15am- then they are not safe. Period.

Sep. 26 2012 09:19 AM
Russell Smith from Manhattan

It is unfair to lay responsibility for the recent Central Park rape at the door of the NYPD. The history of mental
illness of the perpetrator, coupled with the inability of the network of mental health services to find him and treat him, is an example of the failure of "deinstitutionalization". Since the export of the mentally ill into the community from institutions of confinement decades ago, we accepted the social cost of violence when it occurs. Look at all the money saved by eliminating the cost of beds. But, who remembers the retired Rock Center dancer killed by a deranged individual while walking her dog near Central Par?. Or the people murdered on the Staten island ferry? Or the usher slain at St. Patrick's Cathedral? The theory, going back to the 1960's was to make sure that a social or community network of mental health services supported people exported from mental health confinement. Of course the then new major tranquilizers were also relied upon, if taken. We traded the social cost, i.e. rapes & murders, for major dollars saved. Deranged and dangerous homeless people suffering from mental illness need to be found and treated by mental health providers. It is time for them to deploy. The remedy lies in their hands. The NYPD can help, but mental hygiene personnel bear the primary responsibility for our well being.

Sep. 25 2012 10:49 PM

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