The NYPD is launching an aggressive effort to combat the spike in bias attacks against Latinos on Staten Island, especially after this past weekend that saw even more attacks. Ten Hispanic men have been targeted for robbery and assault since April. Eight people have been arrested, and three cases have been closed.
This is an increase of over 50% of attacks compared to the same period last year.
Tuesday night the NYPD department increased its police force in Port Richmond in terms of foot patrols, in sky towers and command posts and in squad cars. “We’re not going to tolerate it,” Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly asserted during a news conference. “We’re taking proactive measures to see to it that if it does happen we’re going to make arrests very quickly.”
Despite the increased police force in Staten Island, Paul Brown, NYPD’s top spokesman urges immigrants to come forward. “Our biggest message to them is, we have no interest in their immigration status.”
These NYPD led initiatives are sending a much-needed message to the Hispanic community that attacks against the community will not be tolerated regardless of their immigration status. The increasing attacks in the area are a result of the growing tensions between blacks who have long lived in the neighborhood and the newly arrived Hispanic immigrants.