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Murders ‘doubled overnight’ and percentage resolved by NYPD plunged

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Murders ‘doubled overnight’ and percentage resolved by NYPD plunged

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Hello. Today we will look at the rise in murders during the pandemic and the decline in cases closed by police. And, now that Thanksgiving is behind us, we’ll also see how Macy’s returns to in-person visits with Santa in a reconfigured workshop.

The statistic is called the clearance rate. It’s a tally of murder cases solved by the NYPD. It was almost 90% in the years leading up to the pandemic. But as shootings and homicides increased last year, department records show it has fallen to around 60 percent.

Video cameras record almost every step of the day-to-day life of some New Yorkers once they leave home. But some high crime neighborhoods lack surveillance, police say – and the pandemic has confused the tools. The masks made it difficult to identify the videotaped assailants as they fled crime scenes, officials said. They also complain that due to recently overhauled laws that allow names of informants to be handed over to defense lawyers, many potential witnesses are refusing to come forward.

“It’s not for lack of trying,” said Lt. William O’Toole, who heads the Bronx Homicide Squad. “We don’t get a lot of help from the community.

My colleague Ali Watkins writes that the surge in unresolved cases hit the Bronx particularly hard after the pandemic closed, and shootings reached their highest level in 15 years. O’Toole said the clearance rate in the Bronx is around 62%. He also said 17 murder suspects have been identified and warrants have been issued against them.

But, he said, “It’s more difficult with the pandemic.”

It’s a cold comfort for Marisol Sanchez. Her son, JayQuan Lewis, was known as “JJ” and had planned to start nursing school in September. He was shot in a bodega in August. Police identified a suspect within hours but did not release a photo for fear of scaring him out of New York City, Sanchez said.

“I have a strong feeling that they are going to find him soon,” Sanchez said over a month ago.

She is still waiting.

[After Murders ‘Doubled Overnight,’ the N.Y.P.D. Is Solving Fewer Cases]

The challenge for police is particularly difficult in cases involving gangs or drugs, which police say may have been part of the shooting. The killer may have mistaken Lewis – who had avoided life on the streets – for someone else. There was no indication that Lewis and the shooter knew each other.

Video footage from the bodega shows Lewis standing at the counter. The gunman, identified by police as Kemel Smith, approaches Lewis from behind. He shoots seven times before calmly walking away.

Police released the suspect’s photo to the public in October. It devastated Sanchez, who took it as confirmation that detectives had no idea where his son’s killer might be.

“I don’t understand how they haven’t caught him yet,” she said at a Halloween party honoring Lewis. Dressed in a “Beetlejuice” costume – “JJ loved” Beetlejuice “,” she said – she ended up sitting in a corner. Her two younger sons refused to attend the event, she said – they wouldn’t be celebrating without their older brother.

“I know her mother wants answers to a lot of questions about what happened,” O’Toole said. “They live it every day.

But, he said, police have only been looking for Smith for three months.


Time

The weather will be in the mid 40’s after a few early morning showers. The rest of the day will be mostly cloudy, with more possible rain. Wind gusts persist through a partially cloudy night, with temperatures dropping down to 30 degrees.

parking on the alternative side

In effect until December 8 (Immaculate Conception).


His nose – will it look like a cherry behind a mask? His dimples – how happy will they be if you can’t see them?

What about Santa’s knees? Oh, that’ll be where he always is, somewhere south of the little round belly that will shake when he laughs, like a bowl full of – you know. But there will be no place to sit on Santa’s lap. Not at Macy’s in Herald Square, anyway. Santa Claus will be on one side of a desk, fully masked. All the good boys and girls will be on the other side, also masked.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade returned Thursday in all its helium-filled glory. You can read about it here. But now it’s time to look to the future.

Macy’s, who took his virtual Santaland last year, is bringing back the in-person encounter with Santa, but with pandemic concessions that will make the souvenir photo a reminder that even Santa’s rituals have changed.

Everyone in Santaland, customers and employees alike will wear masks, a requirement imposed nowhere else in Macy’s huge flagship store, though she encourages all of its customers to mask themselves. Santaland’s layout has also been reconfigured to allow social distancing when children and their parents are in line.

Approaching Santa has always been a bit like approaching a throne, but now it will be a bit like approaching a talk show host, except that the kids (and their parents, they wish) will not sit on a sofa next to Santa Claus.

One thing won’t change: the camera will still face Santa Claus. When the time comes to take the photo, the child and his parents will turn around with their masks still in place.

“We want to make sure everyone – our guests, Santa Claus and his elves – feel safe,” said Kathleen Wright, production manager for Macy’s.

Macy’s does not differentiate between children under 5 – who are not eligible for vaccination – and those who are older and eligible. Macy’s also does not ask if older children received an injection. He is demanding reservations for Santaland, as he has also done in the past for crowd control.

Ms Wright suggested that meeting Santa Claus would make Santa appear to be in her office. The seats will be included in the store’s “enhanced cleaning protocols”. After each family meets with Santa Claus, elves will appear and wipe down surfaces that children and their parents have touched.

It is a new ritual in a setting that connotes tradition. “For a lot of people, Macy’s pretty much owns Christmas,” author Reggie Nadelson wrote in The Times last year, noting that Macy’s has had Santas since 1861, three years after the department store opened.

“One of the things that makes Macy’s – the idea of ​​Macy’s – special is its sense of itself, its scale, the way it promotes its own myth, much like New York does. For many people, that’s all they know about the city as a child.

Ms. Wright, however, did not know. She grew up in River Edge, NJ, but was never taken to Macy’s Santaland. “Now that so many of my friends have kids and my cousins ​​have kids, I tell everyone, ‘We missed that when we were kids. Such a magical place. ‘”


  • “Moulin Rouge! The Musical” has a new Satine – Natalie Mendoza, who played a small role in the 2001 film from which Tony’s award-winning series was adapted.

  • Holiday windows are back. “Yeah, yeah, yeah, lights! Said Michelle Obama, the former first lady, before pushing a giant button to unveil the windows of Saks Fifth Avenue. New York shoppers are also back.


METROPOLITAN Agenda

Dear Diary:

My girlfriend had just found a job in NYC after graduating from law school, so we packed our meager things in an oversized rental truck on a bright summer morning and left to start our first attempt at life. urban.

It would be an understatement to say we were anxious as we drove the truck through the narrow streets of Manhattan. Our anxiety peaked when we turned into the street where our new apartment was located.

Ahead, a large moving van like ours was double parked, leaving what felt like an incredibly narrow lane for us to navigate.

Somehow I knew this was our first test. Without slowing down, I pushed the truck through the gap with a few inches to spare on each side.

As I parked outside our new address, a cab driver yelled out the window as he speeded past.

“Nice driving! ” He shouted.

I barely noticed the six floors up to the apartment.

– G. Steve Jordan

Illustrated by Agnès Lee. Send your submissions here and read more Metropolitan Diary here.


Glad we can meet here. See you Monday. – JB

PS Here is today’s one Mini crossword and Spelling. You can find all our puzzles here.

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