On the second night of Chanukah, Crown Heights Jewish Community Council held a Chanukah celebration at Ahavas Chesed’s Chesed Center on Kingston Avenue, honoring the Police and community crime-fighting volunteers of Civilian Observation Patrol (COP) and the Auxiliary Police.
The ceremony was attended by prominent officials and high Ranking police officers led by Chief Moran of Patrol Borough Brooklyn South, and the commanders of the two precincts, Inspector Peter Simonetti of 71 and Captain Elvio Capocci of 77, as well as Capt Steven Griffith, commander of Transit District 32, covering the local bus and subway lines.
Local elected officials in attendance included Assembly Member Karim Camara and Council Members Letitia James and Mathew Eugene. Other officials were represented by their community liaison people, Rabbi Eli Slavin for Congresswoman Yvette Clarke, Reuven Lipkind, representing State Senator Eric Adams, and Mrs. Arna Lipkind for Council Member Darlene Mealy. Rabbis Michael Miller and Bob Kaplan, both of JCRC, were also present.
Awards were presented to Community Affairs Officers Sacha Pierre-Louis and Vincent Martinos, and to Auxiliary Police Coordinators Ruth Fadl and Michael Milio, in recognition of their important work, connecting the Police with the community.
In presenting awards to 71st Precinct’s Anti – Crime Team members, Sgt Vincent D’Ambroise, Police Officer Herve Francois, and Police Officer Marwan Kandil, CHJCC’s Director of Crime Victim Services and Police Liaison, Batia Brandel, spoke of the alert policing on the part of the officers who arrested a number of dangerous criminals recently, including a rape suspect at the time of the attack, and a number of people carrying loaded guns.
NYPD 71st Precinct Detectives William Van Pelt, Peter Margraf, Thomas Fitzgerald, and Steven Orski were honored for their dedication to crime solving, having been responsible for a number of important arrests, including those of the killers of Police Officer Timoshenko.
The final awards were presented to members of Shmira and the Civilian Observation Patrol who patrol the streets of Crown Heights every night, Dovid Wolosow, Chezky Ezagui and Reverend Terry Lee.
In chairing the event, Rabbi Eli Cohen, Executive Director of Crown Heights Jewish Community Council spoke of the importance and preciousness of having a close working relationship between the community and the police department, especially at a time when crime seems to be increasing, to see that the community should get the protection that it needs. Rabbi Cohen also praised COLLive for the responsible way in which it covers police-related stories on its website.