By Naeisha Rose
Officers of the 103rd Precinct held a neighborhood community meeting Tuesday on unlicensed mechanics, abandoned cars and prostitution.
In attendance at the meeting Concerned Parents Day Care, located at 143-04 on 101st Ave., was Community Board 12 Chairwoman Adrienne Adams.
This was the first of what will be a series of quarterly meetings between officers and residents who live between 157th Street to the Van Wyck Expressway, and from 110th Avenue to Archer Avenue.
During the meeting, police and members of the public discussed how hard crime had gone down, but quality-of-life issues still plagued the region.
“This is a collaborative effort,” Officer Ian Johnson said. “You guys can work with us and you guys can work with each other to make where you live in a better place. We are going to listen to what you have to say.”
One of the major complaints for the area was about unlicensed mechanics taking up parking, forcing inhabitants who don’t have garages adjacent to their homes to walk long distances to find places for their cars.
“There is a guy that fixes car at the side of my house,” said Oyinade Ogunbanjo, who lives at 153rd Street at Tuskegee Airmen Way. “There are three cars that have been parked there for the past two weeks. … They are occupying space that residents should have.”
According to Ogunbanjo, the cars either had out-of-state license plates or no license plates at all, and the ones that were not repaired were so filthy that they attracted raccoons and stray cats.
“Illegal parking is a major problem that we have in this area,” Johnson said. “They shouldn’t be there for an excess of seven days, and when it hits that seven-day mark, it is considered to be abandoned.”
The officers asked the residents to get in touch with the precinct and provide the location of the vehicle, the make and model of the car.
“They are getting out of hand,” Johnson said. “We need your help to pinpoint them.”
The officers also explained that they could only do so much because they have three towing companies and the parking lots they have for towed cars sometimes reach full capacity. Some of the cars, however, will be taken by the Department of Sanitation if they are considered to have no value and classified as scrap metal. The plus side is that residents no longer have to wait for 311 to respond.
Zaheer Hamid had issues with prostitution creeping up in the area. He tried to take his daughter out for ice cream one evening when he saw a call girl propositioning people for sex.The places for solicitations for sex were along 157th Street to Sutphin Boulevard, according to residents.
“We are going to do another prostitution operation,” Alexander said. “We will have an officer that is undercover calling it out [signaling the johns and prostitutes].”
There was not a definite date given out for the operation, but “it will be at the end of June,” according to Officer Ryan Watson.
Once the meeting concluded, the officers and the residents exchanged contact information and chatted.
Reach reporter Naeisha Rose by e-mail at nrose