March (Parking) Madness: A Clash of Two Disgusting Titans in Brooklyn

This is the fifth first-round battle in our March (Parking) Madness contest. In the other Brooklyn prelim, sidewalk-hogging 71st Precinct in Crown Heights beat its colleagues in Bath Beach in the first contest, while the 43rd Precinct of Soundview also advanced in its first-round matchup in the Bronx and the Midtown South Precinct triumphed over its neighbor to the north in our epic Battle of Midtown. Voting will close on Tuesday at midnight in Monday’s other Bronx preliminary, pitting the 47th vs. the 49th (click here). Polls in the bout below will remain open until Wednesday night at 11:59 p.m.

The contest so far. Click to enlarge.
The contest so far. Click to enlarge.

This first-round Brooklyn battle includes last year’s winner loser. And it may have this year’s, too!

March (Parking) Madness fans will recognize last year’s champs, the 84th Precinct and its reprehensible commanding officer, Adeel Rana and immediately remember that its inclusion in this year’s contest is not merely a fluke of the rules automatically granting entry to the previous year’s winner.

The 84th deserves to be here. It is one of the most disrespectful precincts in town.

But its first-round rivals in the 75th Precinct are no slouches, either — they work really hard to make sure their neighbors feel completely disregarded and intimidated by reckless driving, sidewalk parking and overt lawbreaking. But which command has the guts cowardice to advance? You tell us (remember to vote at the bottom!):

The 84th Precinct (Downtown Brooklyn)

The 84th Precinct station house is on Gold Street.
The 84th Precinct station house is on Gold Street.

This crucial precinct in Downtown Brooklyn has been a source of frustration for street safety advocates for years. The station house itself on Gold Street is surrounded by the illegally parked person vehicles of dozens of police officers, many of whom follow the egregious example of their commanding officer and drive recklessly with impunity.

And not only the side streets are choked with these officers’ cars — they park on the exit and entrance ramps of the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, on the median of Tillary Street, and on any grassy area they can find. They even steal parking from NYCHA residents. Here’s a slideshow of that, just to whet your appetite:

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The 84th also shares Tillary Street with an FDNY facility, so some of the blame for the disgusting filth of the area goes to New York’s “Bravest.” But it’s the cops who tolerate and encourage and enable the firefighters’ transgressions. That even means allowing this jerk to park on the sidewalk and bull bars covering his front plate:

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No wonder that guy covers his plate: He has four red-light tickets and one speeding ticket on his record. Perhaps he would have more if he wasn’t such a plate-coverer?

The cop-firefighter mutual disrespect society includes this level of chaos, caused by the local smokeaters:

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But let’s not lose focus. The cops of the 84th Precinct are the real villains here. Beyond the aforementioned sidewalk parking, cops here are miscreants. During our first-round visit last week, we caught the following:

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Let’s focus on the main problem here: It’s just that the cops here have no respect for their neighbors:

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Even the commanding officer of the transit unit in the station house drives around with no front plate.

No front plate?!
No front plate?! And a speeding ticket?! Some commander.

And it’s well known that CO Rana has his own problem with safe driving (including three more speeding tickets since we last caught him!). And his cops are following his horrible example. At the 84th, we spotted 56 police officers’ cars either parked in the NYPD zone or parked illegally with a placard and:

This much terrible behavior would normally make the 84th Precinct a shoo-in to make it to the borough finals, but this precinct may have met its match in today’s challenger…

The 75th Precinct (East New York)

The 75th Precinct house on Sutter Avenue is a mess.
The 75th Precinct house on Sutter Avenue is a mess.

Let’s start with something you don’t see very often: the officers at the 75th Precinct in East New York apparently don’t even like each other. How else can you explain this sticker, which is on poles all over the areas where cops park their personal vehicles:

Who's this guy?
Who’s this guy?

Beyond that, you see the usual egregious behavior around the 75th Precinct house on Sutter Avenue: combat-parked cars, garbage, covered and defaced plates and reckless driving, but the cops under the command of Inspector Rohan Griffith are just even more egregious. Here’s our report:

The first thing you notice at the 75th Precinct is the vast multitude of cops who drive to work every day. The station house has four parking lots, yet there are still dozens of cars combat-parked on Sutter Avenue, which is a bus route that (because of the cops) is frequently blocked. Pedestrians are forced into the street, delivery truckers double park, and the impassible sidewalk is filled with garbage. Here’s what it all looks like:

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And unlike the 84th Precinct, the cops at the 75th like to leave junked cars from previous cases lying all over the place, one of the great “fuck you’s” to the neighborhood:

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And the way they block the bus lane is a constant problem:

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No wonder peak bus speeds on the B14 route are less than 6 miles per hour on average and waits are longer, according to the MTA’s bus dashboard. But why should officers care? After all, they have four nice big parking lots. Here’s one:

This is a panorama shot.
This is a panorama shot.

Because parking lots have big signs forbidding trespassing, we generally leave the cops’ cars alone in there … except when they’re visible from the street. In this case, we saw three covered plates, one defaced plate and two out-of-state plates (reminder: cops must live in New York State):

Here’s one of the covered plates sitting in plain sight:

Even worse? Two of the 75th Precinct’s unmarked cars had bent plates — one of the most over displays of lawlessness possible (you do know the neighbors see that, right?):

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Maybe they have a lot to hide? After all, we spotted 40 cars parked in NYPD zones or with placards around the station house, and couldn’t believe how badly these cops drive. Eighteen cops had multiple reckless driving tickets. That’s not as high a percentage as the 84th, but the four parking lots probably keeps a lot of the worst drivers from the prying eyes of the press.

Bottom line: The garbage and garbage treatment of the neighbors make the 75th Precinct fully deserving of a berth in the borough finals. But, of course, it’s up to you! Please vote by Wednesday at 11:59 p.m.

Which Precinct Should Go to the Borough Finals?

  • The 75th (East New York) (51%, 83 Votes)
  • The 84th (Downtown Brooklyn) (49%, 81 Votes)

Total Voters: 164

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Bash at the beach. That's a good headline. Photos: Dave Colon

March (Parking) Madness: Bash at the Beach

Today's competition is a beach-side battle pitting the Rockaway peninsula's two precincts against each other. Befitting the good vibes of the nearby beach, the entire experience was pretty chill, save for a burned-out car getting its own parking spot for some reason.