Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Mayor and Minority Leader Agree on Attacking KPD

Kingston Police Chief Jerry Keller

Kingston Mayor Jim Sottile and Minority Leader Andi Turco Levin agree on blaming the Kingston Police department for a recent shooting that happened at an illegal night club in Kingston's midtown.

“Three hundred (patrons) knew about this (party),” Sottile said. “I think we need to fine tune our intel operations. I think that this slipped through the cracks and I hope we don’t have any more slip through the cracks.”

Sottile added, “How is something of this magnitude done in secrecy?

“I mean, a group of 300 people can go to an illegal setting undetected,” Sottile said. “That certainly concerns me. ... Where is our intel at this organization (the police department).”

Council Minority Leader echoed Sottile's comments:

“I would have to agree with him that they should have been a lot more proactive in finding out what was going on,” Turco-Levin said.

Turco-Levin pointed out the party was announced on the Facebook page of the Newburgh-based Street Cannibals motorcycle club.

Wow! I have not heard comments that stupid and short sided in sometime.

I am glad the city of Kingston police department has the confidence of the mayor and the council Minority, way to boost the moral. The mayor really should be praising Chief Keller and Det. Matthews for arresting the people involved so swiftly not attacking them for not being proactive enough. They are not psychics they can't predict a shooting will occur.

Furthermore, Sottile has real nerve to complain about KPD not knowing what's going on, when he attempted to fire police officers and cut the force and limit their resources. Maybe if the KPD didn't have to fight to save their jobs, they could have been out preventing these crimes from occurring as hiz honor suggests.

Police Chief Jerry Keller runs a fine department that does an excellent job keeping Kingstonians and visitors to Kingston safe, the Mayor of our city should not be attacking the department and if Jim Sottile has legitimate concerns he should bring it up at the police commission meeting, (a commission that he is in charge of) not beating his chest in the Daily Freeman.


Anonymous said...

Jeremy, you're way off on this one. The KPD isn't busting its ass trying to save their jobs. They have a manning clause, a no-layoff clause, unlimited sick time clause, unlimited overtime clause...

It's about time they did something other than medical calls. They had a block-by-block program, which, in retrospect, was pure PR. In order to save themselves, they absorbed the building department on the premise that should any emergency (?) be necessary to respond to a code violation, they're there. Where were they when it comes to O'Neil St.? They covered that block. Were they taking lessons from New York City's Department of Sanitation? The city is a dump - and the fire department is primarily responsible for that. They're supposed to be enforcing building codes. Instead, they're shopping at Hannaford, eating at diners, renting movies, etc. And this is during the day - I could understand them not doing code enforcement at night.

This social club was supposed to be a sound studio - seriously? No permits? What about fire-resistant sound-proofing? Was that ever checked? What about the electric? Was that inspected? The KFD can't answer "yes" to any of the above questions because they're arrogant and lazy - and because the majority of them don't live in Kingston so they really don't give a shit about our city.

This social nightclub should definitely have been on the radar. You can't tell me that that was the first event that was held there.

The KPD? They're just as useless. Last summer my girlfriend witnessed a mother beating her child with a belt in the parking lot of Hannaford. We called the police; they did nothing (they spoke with the mom - never asked to see the daughter separately). I spoke with the officer and the sergeant on the shift, and they were rude and impatient. They never referred the case to CPS, and when I called Chief Keller, he never returned my call.

So, when this child grows up to be a high school drop-out and a thug, it won't be a surprise. The police had every opportunity in this case to fix what was wrong, but it would've taken work.

The mayor is 100% right when he says that the "intel" should've been there. That should be the job of Salzmann and Keller. They should follow Sottile's lead and retire. Stick a fork in'em. They're done.

Anonymous said...

You have to wonder how 300 people could go undetected for almost 3-4 hours before the shooting. A car patrol would have seen some activity(cars and people). It also shows that the neighbors were either indifferent or intimidated about the type of people who were arriving at the party. At least they called after they heard shots.

Anonymous said...

Not for nothing but.... If the KPD and/or urgent are truly monitoring Gang activity, how did they miss this? http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001648481333#!/photo.php?fbid=176040885760866&set=a.148285158536439.28803.126564247375197

Anonymous said...

If you build them, they will come. Keep putting up low income housing and this is an end result(low life social club activities and etc). We seem to be the mecca for bad and criminal behavior. The senior citizens are the ones who should get the apartments. They have worked all of their lives and should be able to have a stabilized rent in their retirement years. I realize the original intent was good but enough is enough!!!!

Anonymous said...

10:04 is right....kind of. It was right there on Facebook. But you still have to have officers available to look for it. How many towns have eliminated their participation in URGENT this year? And what about Kingston's cut backs on the detective division and patrol?

Now add in the outrage by the public if they had found out prior to an incident that a detective was
"sitting around" on Facebook. Everyone is happy to cut KPD at every turn and bitch about how many of them they see around "doing nothing" but when you need them they can't get there fast enough.

Now 9:22 is on to something. KFD has a 7 million dollar budget. Take away the non-emergency medical calls and lockouts and what not and their call volume would drastically decrease to about that of the Town of Ulster Fire Departments, which combined operate on about 2 million. We may be on to something here.

Anonymous said...

Correction 9:22 - it's not the KPD that enjoys those benefits, it's the KFD.

Anonymous said...

The clueless politicians have to stay out of police departments and police operations. Some of these people are in office for less then a year and they think they know it all. They have to let the law enforcement experts do their jobs. Whether its in the county, in the city , or in the town of ulster the polititians are slowly, and in some cases quickly, distroying the police departments. Out in Ulster the department lost 4 guys in 2010, the detective was removed from Urgent, and a detective was demoted. The know-it-all polititians out there in Ulster must not think theres crime out there in the town. Someone has to stop these idiots. Give the police department back to the police.

Anonymous said...

The politicians cut the KPD budget, cut staffing levels, and then cry like baby's that KPD could not have the intel to see this cluster flop coming. Welllll excuse me!!!!! It is the direct cause of the Councils budget cutting process. I could just hear Senor saying that" all the officer does is play on the internet ( facebook, myspace, y tube). Well if there was a intel break down, its because we do not have enough officers searching the internet looking for events like New Years eve that were posted on the internet at FACEBOOK. Stop blaming the Police for somthing that is the administrations fault. If you didnt cut the funding maybe Kingston could put officers that search the internet for threats aginst the City of Kingston.
its allways sunny in the T/U

5th Pillar said...

I blame the criminals. KPD is doing their part.. 7 more arrests related to the event and the preceeding event just yesterday. KPD is not to blame, sorry Mr. Soon-to-be-retired Mayor.


IT's just a sign of the times. As we all know, Kingston is not immune from the riff-raff that infests our population. It's worse elsewhere, particularly in places like Newburgh and Poughkeepsie, where alot of these scumbags originated from.

Going forward, the KPD must become more aggressive by making the midtown area in particular, a very difficult area to conduct the drug trade. I believe that they have shown far too much restraint in dealing with these predatory elements. We all know who they are...

There must, however, be a consensus by political leaders in this city to encourage the KPD to become much tougher in their everyday tactics. KPD has shown great restraint in the past because that has been the culture of the political leaders. We also must invest in MORE officers, certainly not be cutting manpower. Raising revenue is difficult today, but a good start would be increasing parking fines and fines on other violations, with that additional revenue earmarked to fund the police budget, and ONLY the police budget. The city should also impose a hefty surcharge on multi-family dwellings. This would force the landlord to increase rental fees, and alot of the lower income riff-raff simply would find Kingston not cheap city to live in and sell drugs on the corner, and might move to say.. Newburgh.

Are the Common Council and the Mayor willing to drive out likely Democratic Voters in the process by doing this, though? I think not before we have far more crime.

It took 40 years to get to where we are. The problems are not all Kingston's. Years ago, there were manufacturing jobs in the city that kept the lower classes busy working, and they did. Today there is far less opportunity. Idle hands are the Devil's workshop...and today instead of making garmets, fans, etc.. you have a segment of our population that is disenfranchised. There is a breakdown of the family structure. This causes a generational devolution. It's easy to point the finger at the KPD, I guess. Easy won't improve conditions in our city. Easy doesn't work anymore. Easy is the high you get from smoking crack. Easy is a disease. Easy is how our city will die if we don't start making the hard choices now!

I'm not optomistic. I want to be, but "leaders" bury their head in the sand when it comes to the real problems we face, instead they devote their energy to a commitee on CATS. That problem is relativley EASY to solve. You round up all the stray cats and euthanize them. Ohhh.. but we can't do that..it's inhumane... You see.. the same solution would work for crack dealers, but if we can't even solve a cat problem, I don't see drugs and crime being solved anytime soon. Ok, well, that's that. - Old Cappy

Anonymous said...

9:35 - the "politicians" (spelled correctly by me, incorrectly by you) are supposed to manage the coffers. If there isn't the money to keep the staff, then unfortunately, cuts need to be made. In the Town of Ulster, Woerner let Watzka have everything he wanted, and the end result was the decimation of the reserves. Tough choices had to be made; the town board still foisted a double-digit tax increase on to the taxpayers. How much more are you willing to pay?

6:38 - I agree with increasing revenue, but increasing fines won't help. The police rarely stop to write parking tickets, yet I see violators all over the city. That would be a goldmine for the city's coffers. The parking fines could be $100, but if they're not giving tickets, then $100 x 0 = 0.

Anonymous said...

8:33 AM- you're an asshole . Did I spell that right. I didn't know this was a grammar class. When it comes to the town of ulster and "woerner let watzka have everything he wanted", you don't know what you're talking about. It sounds like you're listening to the lying politicians out in the town. Or , you are one.

And you sure do sound like a politician. Ticket the citizens, let them pay. Haven't they paid enough.

Anonymous said...

12:57 - I know very well what I'm talking about - I've analyzed the abstracts - obviously you haven't. And if you did, you would agree with me. The Town Board never put limits on Woerner's and Watzka's spending. The last year Woerner was in office, the UPD ran out of money by the end of October. They had to dip into the reserves for the last two months of the year.

And if the citizens don't pay, who does? How else do the bills get paid, asshole? The Town of Ulster is in the red - thanks to Woerner, Artist and Secreto. You're awfully defensive - and hyper-sensitive - about the Town of Ulster. If you had any idea of what went on, you'd know. I've spoken with Secreto, and he still sings Woerner's high praises. He's so stupid he thinks that by lauding Woerner, he'll get re-elected. If Secreto was smart, he'd distance himself from Woerner, and admit that the Town of Ulster is in deep shit. And, BTW, if Ulster loses the suit with Tech City, they're going to be in deeper. Who's going to pay for that? You don't think the citizens will have to cough up the millions (yes, millions) of dollars? How will that get paid? How will the other bills get paid?

As far as Kingston goes, Kingston is a dump and, like all government agencies, needs money too. Cutting Raising revenue is attained by raising taxes and/or increasing fees.

Apparently, you don't think the "polititians" should cut expenses. How should the budget gap be closed? The Town of Ulster is attempting to do it by cutting into the PD, and they still had to impose a double-digit tax increase.

What's your solution as to how to close the budget gap?

Anonymous said...

@12:57 - yeah, 8:33 is an asshole 'cuz you don't know how to spell. You're the asshole who can't figure out that the biggest crimes in the town of Ulster is shoplifting, and you think the board has no right to cut expenses. The board just passed a 10+% tax increase. If they didn't cut anything from the UPD, how much do you think the tax increase would be? I live in the Town of Ulster, and I voted for Woerner the first time. But it soon became obvious that he was spending us into bankruptcy. Thank God that Quigley has put the brakes on the spending. We can't afford more taxes - cut the UPD - they're not that important.

Anonymous said...

5:34..i m just going to say one more thing and then i'll let you play with your incorrect informnation. The last year weorner was in office,2009, the police department did not , I repeat, did not run out of money.If you check the abstracts, as you say you did, and then check the money that was received, you will find that the police depratment was actually approximately $160,000 in the black. Thats a fact. The republicans are spinning the numbers to benifit them. And that a fact.Have a good day

Anonymous said...

Mr or Ms 5:34, Im not going to give anyone high praises, but I'll tell you I think you'r mistaken. I used to be a reporter for a local newspaper, and I talked to a councilperson last year,and she showed be the abstact and it showed the police department way over budget. I know Chief Watzka, so i set up a meeting with him and met with him. He showed me that same abstract and the police were way over budget . He then explained to me this was only the expenses. He then showed me the revenue the police brought in that year. With the revenue, the police were in the good for about $100,000. It looked like to me that I was just shown the expenses, and not the revenue. I then checked with the lady that does the budget for the town, and she did tell me that the abstract I was shown by the councilperson was just the expenses. It sounds like to me we have half truths somewhere.

Anonymous said...

I think we re all a bunch of assholes for even commenting on a blog.

Anonymous said...

Remember: You don't need a cop until you need a cop.

ulsterguy said...

You make a good point 534. If the Town loses the suit against Tech City who will pay. A better question is, what will happen to Maloney if they lose. Isn't that the 3rd suit they lost for his appraisals. Someone has to look at how much money HE cost the Town. OHH i forgot , hes one of the good old boy republicans. Sorry

Anonymous said...

So the police were within their inflated budget. Woerner still sucked.

Anonymous said...

Everyone have a good new year. Darn, i wish i hit that lottery !!

Anonymous said...

Maloney with his inflated assessments will end up costing not just the town of Ulster, but the County and more importantly the Kingston School district well over $10,000,000.

Piers Morgan [CNN] said...

It's a bout tyme to sack the entire Ulster Constabulatory. Great blog ol chap!

Piers Morgan

The Ghost of Chief Riggins said...

Fire Keller and hire Watzka!

Anonymous said...

9:22 Your description of this incident at Hannaford IS disturbing...yet I might add NOT unusual: witness the incident on a plane recently where the parent was apparently doing something similar, this time to an infant, the stewardess tried to intervene, the police were called, and nothing was done. Not an easy situation to handle especially if the police don't actually witness the beating--not saying it's not disturbing--only that it is not the routine type of situation everyone is trained to handle optimally. There is another disturbing fact also, which is that CPS often oversteps its bounds in such issues, and then parental rights are totally out the window. Although, personally I am for protecting the child too--and personally have done so in a physically violent situation having to call in CPS in which the perp of the violence was a personal friend(that person who was then the victim of physical violence today IS a dropout, and the person who committed the violent acts was not the kid's mother or relative--which is to say, doing the right thing alone doesn't always make the situation ideal--lots of other factors enter into that--so stating what you stated (9;22 is also not reasonable in that no one can predict that future in any reliable way). Which is what you could do without the help of the police anyway--in order to see that through, 9:22.
Well so if the fire dept. and the building dept. are responsible for the city being a dump--then where do you come off blaming the police dept.?? They are supposed to know in advance about every crime so they can send in a SWAT team or what? That's a television world, man. Of course this attack on KPD is grandstanding, but it is the Mayor's job to ensure police operations meet the needs of the city--despite calls for politicians to "stay out of police activities". Sottile is just passing the buck yet again--something he is very adept at trying to do but somehow by now we all know what he says can't be trusted to represent anything other than trying to save his image. The minority leader just prefers to live in her white bread uptown world here--"where all the nice people live." Bunch of stupidity.
It is the job of the Mayor to chair the police commission and ensure that any deficiencies in police operations are corrected. The incident in Hannaford parking lot is one that should be looked at. It is the job of anyone witnessing that to tell it to the Mayor--who then has the responsibility of trying to improve the situation. That's how it works 9:22--well BEFORE "sticking a fork" in anyone--so unless you have followed up in this manner--I would say your conclusion--while understandable out of frustration--is not reasonable--which I assert despite agreeing that your description is of a disturbing incident.
And if the Mayor is agreeing so much with the minority leader, may I simply suggest they start an Italian restaurant together and call it "Real Estate and Beefcake" with photos on the wall of high-end properties and closeup photos of Sottile's body fat--and a bar built for patrons' tossing mixed drinks at each other as an alternative to putting in a billiards table. Yes, I think I MAY suggest that...