Crime rose in New York City in April across most major categories along with an increase in traffic violence so far this year, despite Mayor Eric Adams’s efforts to bolster policing and street safety in the Big Apple, data by NYPD shows.
In the seven categories of major crimes, the numbers rose by 34.2% last month compared to the same time last year, driven by bumps in grand larcenies (43.5%) and robberies (41.5%).
Burglaries and felony assaults also went up by 20.9% and 39.4%, however murders and shootings were down by 38% and 29.1%, respectively, according to the monthly figures NYPD released Tuesday evening, May 3.
Hate crimes were also down 40% along with rapes, which decreased by 6%.
“Reducing crime in the city won’t happen overnight, but thanks to the NYPD’s efforts homicides, shootings, rapes, and hate crimes are all down compared to the same period last year,” said City Hall spokesperson Fabien Levy in a statement. “We are taking some of the biggest actions in years to protect New Yorkers because we will never stop fighting to protect the residents of this city.”
Longer-term trends in NYPD’s CompStat database show that major crime numbers for the 28 days through May 1 are the highest they’ve been since 2006, but still less than half the amount a decade earlier in 1996.
But the recent increases come after the mayor pushed to bring back tough-on-crime policies from the 1990s to crack down on low-level offenses.
Police made 49.6% more arrests last month than the same time in 2021, including 64.6% more for illegal gun possession.
The lower shooting rates and higher gun arrests came a month after Adams brought back a revamped version of the NYPD’s controversial plain-clothes anti-gun unit in March, this time with new uniforms.
“Mayor Adams has made clear that public safety is his top priority, which is why he and the NYPD are working every day to remove guns from our streets, protect our communities, and create a safe, prosperous, and just city for all New Yorkers,” Levy said.
NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell said in a statement that officers were making “noticeable headway” with more patrols on the streets and underground.
“The women and men of the NYPD are making noticeable headway through our enhanced patrol deployments both on the street and below ground in the subway system, a concentrated effort to take even more illegal firearms out of the hands of criminals, and a renewed attention to persistent quality-of-life offenses – guided directly by complaints from the people we serve,” Commissioner Sewell said in a statement.
Transit crime increased last month amid increased police deployments underground.
More detailed CompStat numbers from the 28 days through May 1 show a 57% increase, with almost half of the 168 incidents being 74 grand larcenies, followed by 46 assaults and 45 robberies.
The numbers are slightly below pre-pandemic figures of 175 transit crimes for the same period in 2019, and less than half of a peak in 1999 of 338 cases.
A series of horrifying incidents on the subways early this year, including the fatal shoving of Michelle Go in front of a train at Times Square in January and the Sunset Park shooting last month, prompted a more intense focus on law enforcement in transit by the authorities.
Mayor Adams early on in his tenure vowed to make police an “omnipresence” in the subways, and sent cops in record numbers underground directing them to boot unhoused New Yorkers and enforce MTA rules such as no smoking or sleeping in the system.
Amid the high-profile cases and increased media coverage, crimes in the transit system continued to make up less than 2% of the overall citywide total during the most recent 28 days, a figure consistent with previous rates.
Above ground safety has become worse on Gotham’s streets.
There have been a startling 31,918 traffic collisions year-to-date, according to the latest NYPD stats online.
The high number marks slight increase of 0.4% from the same time in 2021, a year that was the deadliest for traffic violence since former Mayor Bill de Blasio took office in 2014 and launched his signature Vision Zero policy to reduce road deaths.
Crashes with injuries were up 10.4% overall year-to-date, with a whopping 37% spike in pedestrian injuries and 68.7% more people wounded while riding motorized vehicles other than cars or motorbikes.
Adams and his Department of Transportation in January unveiled plans to make 1,000 intersections safer in the Five Boroughs by raising crosswalks and improving signals.
On Monday Hizzoner and DOT revealed a $4 million campaign with billboard ads urging drivers to slow down.