Thefts were up Downtown in 2013

BY SAM SPOKONY  |  Felony crimes Downtown remained at about the same levels overall last year compared to 2012, although — as with most of the city — the area saw a sizable increase in thefts, according to police statistics.

Within the N.Y.P.D.’s First Precinct, which covers the Financial District, Seaport, Battery Park City, Tribeca and Soho, grand larceny — theft of property worth more than $1,000 — rose by just over 6.5 percent in 2013, with nearly 1,100 reported incidents. And in the Fifth Precinct, which covers Chinatown and Little Italy, grand larceny rose by nearly nine percent, with around 600 reported incidents.

Captain Brendan Timoney, who commands the First Precinct, told Downtown Express that in response to the increase in thefts, he took action toward the end of 2013 by placing additional officers on patrol along Fulton St. and around Soho retail stores.

Timoney said that, as long as he can continue in 2014 with his current level of personnel at the precinct, he hopes those grand larceny numbers will drop this year.

On the other hand, petty larceny — theft of property worth less than $1,000 — decreased by five percent within the First Precinct in 2013, according to police statistics. But in the Fifth Precinct, those crimes rose by nearly 4.5 percent.

Most other felony crimes went way down last year.

In the First Precinct, assault fell by nearly 22 percent, burglary fell by nearly 10 percent, robbery fell by nearly 14 percent and grand larceny of automobiles fell by nearly 36 percent, according to police statistics.

Reported rapes in the First Precinct rose by 3 from 10 to 13, or 30 percent. And there were no murders in the First Precinct this year, compared to one in 2012.

In the Fifth Precinct, felony assault rose by just over three percent, although burglary fell by nearly 33 percent, robbery fell by around 16.5 percent, grand larceny of automobiles fell by nearly 43 percent.

Rapes dropped significantly, 58.5 percent, from 12 to 5.

The murder rate stayed the same within that area compared to 2012 with three reported. The most recent murder in the Fifth was the Nov. 10 shooting death of George Taliferro, 30, between two buildings at Smith Houses, a public housing development near City Hall.

A Smith Houses resident, Christopher Delrosario, 19, was arrested several days later and charged with second degree murder in connection with Taliferro’s death.