Here’s The Local’s latest installment of “Police And Thieves,” your weekly roundup of crime. What follows are the latest reports from Feb. 12 to Feb. 19, sorted by the type of incident. Our map of all of crime since Jan. 15 is at bottom.
- A early-morning brawl on East Fourth Street resulted in a man being clobbered with an aluminum baseball bat on Feb. 18. The 22-year-old victim told the police he got in an argument with the suspect on East Fourth Street between First and Second Avenues at around 5 a.m., after which the suspect punched him in the face and clocked him with the bat, causing swelling to his face and a cut.
- A 21-year-old told the police he was on Third Avenue between 10th and 11th Streets at around 4:30 a.m. on Feb. 17 when he was blindsided and knocked out. When he came to, his wallet and watch were missing.
- A man was clobbered with a rock in the hallway of the Jacob Riis Houses on Feb. 19. The 39-year-old victim said he was in a building on Avenue D near East Seventh Street at around 1:15 a.m. when two men struck him and stole his cellphone and wallet. The victim would not cooperate further with the police.
- A thief confronted a man in a playground of the Jacob Riis Houses on Feb. 18 and stole a whopping $2,300 from him. The 30-year-old told the police he was crossing through the playground on FDR Drive near East 14th Street at around 4:45 a.m. when the suspect punched him in the face and demanded money. The victim said he handed over $40, but the suspect demanded more. The victim then fled into the lobby of a nearby building, where the two wrestled. The suspect — who is said to have brandished a glass bottle — eventually gained the upper hand and stole the wad of cash from the victim’s pocket. Read more…
During two separate meetings with representatives of the police department this week, East Villagers complained about noise caused by the 13th Step on Second Avenue between Ninth and Tenth Streets, with one resident comparing the sports bar to Sodom and Gomorrah. Last night, other bars – including the Village Pourhouse, Webster Hall, and Amsterdam Billiards – were also singled out as sources of fighting and noise.
At Tuesday’s meeting of the Ninth Precinct Community Council, David Keller, who lives across the street from the bar, complained that “late at night, it transforms into a nightclub. There is a line winding down the street.” Lieutenant Patrick Ferguson described it as one of the most successful bars in the neighborhood. He said the police were well aware of the quality of life issues there, but that it passed a noise test by the Department of Environmental Protection on Sept. 17, so there wasn’t much he could do.
Last night, the bar came up again at a community forum at Webster Hall, meant to address ongoing nightlife problems around Second and Third Avenues.
A crowd of about 25 gathered at the nightclub to discuss heavy foot traffic, street noise, and drunken behavior in the northwest corner of the East Village on weekend nights. Webster Hall general manager Gerard McNamee, who began hosting bi-annual community forums about four years ago, moderated the conversation, which incorporated voices of neighbors across generations and representatives from popular bars on nearby blocks, including the Village Pourhouse and Amsterdam Billiards. Read more…
Simon McCormack Bars around the East Village, including The Continental (top) and the 13th Step, regularly offer promotional deals on alcoholic drinks. Research has found a link between those promotions and instances of binge-drinking.
Kelly Kellam and Michael Russinik were walking on Third Avenue near St. Marks Place when something caught their eye.
The sign over the door of the Continental bar where Mr. Kellam and Mr. Russinik found themselves one early Wednesday evening read simply: “5 shots of anything $10 all day/all night.”
“We said jokingly, ‘Hey, let’s each go get five shots’ and then there was that awkward pause,” Mr. Russinik said. “Then we were, like, ‘Let’s do it.’”
Mr. Kellam and Mr. Russinik said they would not have come into The Continental if it weren’t for the prominently advertised drink special. But do bargain drink prices at bars encourage people to drink too much?
Susan Foster, vice president and director of policy research and analysis at The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, said bars have a major impact on drinking culture.
“The research finds a significant link between price-related alcohol promotions, easy access to alcohol and binge drinking,” Ms. Foster said in an e-mail message. “Study findings suggest that an environment that is not only conducive to drinking, but encouraging of drinking, and in which alcohol is inexpensive and easily accessed, makes excessive alcohol use seem normal.”