In a CBS2 interview, NYPD Chief Keechant Sewell covered a lot of ground with anchor Maurice DuBois. Bikes as a quality-of-life issue got batted around. Sewell, originally from just across the East River in Queensbridge Houses, insisted the cops are enforcing bike safety. But DuBois countered, “I never see it. No one I know has ever seen it.” Sounds familiar.
by David Stone
A little bit of a personality profile along with a general chat about crime in general, the interview had plenty of unrehearsed banter. Major crimes jumped over 20% in 2022, although as Sewell argued, the last quarter showed a sharp drop.
But here on Roosevelt Island, quality of life issues are at the forefront since major crimes are infrequent. And that, as we’ve reported many times, involves traffic safety.
After multiple accidents and countless near misses, many Roosevelt Islanders fear walking Main Street, especially if it involves crossing. Virtually no enforcement gives riders free reign in running stop signs, speeding and using sidewalks as roadways.
Bike riding can be a hazard for pedestrians because when cyclists are going fast, they may not be able to stop quickly enough to avoid hitting pedestrians. Also, when cyclists are riding on the sidewalk, they may not be able to see pedestrians coming and they may run into them.
NYPD Chief Sewell Vs PSD’s Kevin Brown
Public Safety Department Chief Kevin Brown’s position defers most from Sewell’s because he would never sit for questions from reporters. RIOC President/CEO Seldom Seen Shelton Haynes forbids contact with the media.
Employees report threats of being fired for merely having a sidewalk conversation; so, Chief Brown is not entirely at fault. But he values keeping his high-paying job over doing the actual work it requires.
Fielding unchallenged softball questions from Residents Association members periodically is about as bold as it gets on Roosevelt Island.
For these reasons, Brown will never juggle challenging questions as NYPD Chief Sewell did with Maurice DuBois.
The absence of accountability or transparency fumbles along with Team Hochul/Haynes and will until someone or something forces the hyper-sensitive local executives to grow up and show the kind of courage and resolve we see in Sewell.
The CBS2 interview is one of the best you’re ever likely to see, and we suggest you take a look here. See how the other half lives and takes public safety seriously.
The Roosevelt Island Daily thanks Sylvan Klein for, once again, alerting us to an interesting story we otherwise missed.