Paterson police to increase presence following rash of Labor Day weekend shootings | Paterson Times

Paterson police to increase presence following rash of Labor Day weekend shootings

Sayegh announces his road repair plan in front of the St. Bonaventure's Church on Ramsey Street.

After a series of shootings that left two dead and eight wounded over the Labor Day weekend, mayor Andre Sayegh called on police brass to come up with a plan to curb violence in the city.

Sayegh summoned police director Jerry Speziale and chief Troy Oswald on Tuesday morning to ensure a similar episode does not unfold in the coming weekend. He said he will not allow violence to define his city.

“We don’t want another weekend like that. We’re not going to let less than one percent of people define who we are,” said Sayegh on Tuesday afternoon. He said the Great Falls Festival, Dominican Republic flag raising, and the Labor Day Parade took place during the weekend without a hitch.

Thousands of people attended the festival at the Great Falls, said the mayor, without an incident.

Speziale on Tuesday night said the department will increase presence throughout the city on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. He said he could not publicly discuss the strategies police will employ in suppressing violence in the coming days.

Sayegh said his administration has sought the assistance of both the Passaic County Sheriff’s Office and the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office. He said both have said they will provide resources to the city.

Oswald said police will deploy the special operations group which includes various units like the traffic division, Ceasefire, and narcotics.

“I’m doing an all hands-on deck approach,” said Oswald. He will personally patrol the streets on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Sayegh said he too will join police in patrolling the streets. The Dominican parade is scheduled for this week, which will bring thousands of people to the Silk City.

Police do not believe the recent spate of violence is gang related. Some community leaders have been baffled by the rash of gun violence.

“I don’t know what to make of it,” said pastor Allan Boyer of Bethel AME Church on Auburn Street. He expressed confidence in police to arrest the actors involved.

“The Paterson Police Department has a reputation in making arrests,” said Boyer. “Paterson police is one of the better departments in the nation.”

Paterson has a higher clearance rate than Newark or Jersey City.

“Every once in a while, we have these streaks,” added pastor Michael McDuffie. He said churches need to do more to quell the violence in the city. “We got too many doors closed. I’m sick of it.”

McDuffie said churches could serve as neutral places to settle disputes. He said anyone who has a dispute should seek his mediation and avoid engaging in violence.

“It’s senseless killing,” said Walter Station, who has lived in Paterson for 59 years. He said police need to do better patrols.

“We don’t have any patrol at night,” he said speaking of 11th Avenue. He walks his dog at 11 p.m. at night, he said.

Twice his daughter’s car was broken into while it was parked on 11th Avenue, he said.

“This is not who we are,” said Sayegh referring to the weekend violence.

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  • Plumber

    Now all the city leaders and top cops are playing stupid not knowing what caused the rash shootings you can start with drugs prostitution and gangs they have police walking on Broadway keeping the misfits off the main thoroughfare but they push these POS on the side streets and it's business as usual alburn summer and carroll st and E18th st off van houtan st are so infested it's unbelievable .Not too long ago I saw a crack head taking a dump on the main library steps on Broadway man let me stop I can write a book it's a shame

    • John Brown

      write that book I would love to read it. lol.

  • Dominick Perez

    I saw rookies on beat patrol on Main Street, downtown around 11 pm the other night. WTH are they doing there? All the stores are closed and it was a ghost town. They need to have them patrolling these crime hotspots.

    • John Brown

      That would put them in danger. and they're not here for that.

      • Dominick Perez

        then what are they here for?

        • John Brown

          it's certainly not to protect and serve

  • Andres Rodriguez

    That is why Paterson is like this nonsense opinion of that pastor Mr.Boyer Paterson police is the best? Are you blind? What a shame

  • peejay1954

    What is "Clearance Rate" ? Clearing the bad guys off the street? If so, the "Authorities are doing a lousy job!

  • John Brown

    o.k… let's see how this plays out. the Dominican parade is this weekend. it might be worst than last weekend!