“The 27-year-old guard was shot inside the waterfront lounge’s outdoor deck area near Dyckman Street and the Hudson River about 11:45 p.m., the NYPD said.”
– DNA Info, July 14 2014.
On July 13th, at 11:45 pm, a patron shot a security guard in the neck on the terrace of the concession following an altercation. The guard survived but the shooter escaped and is at large. Click here for the video of the aftermath.
Per its license agreement, the facility should have closed at 11 pm but was instead open to 1 am with DJ’s performing, as has been custom since opening in July 2012.
Despite being an example of gun violence, and technically attempted murder, on city parkland, during a time it should not have been open, while acting as a nightclub it is not supposed to be, there were no statements by Parks nor by the concession operators. Or by any of the many elected officials who have been involved with the concession. The police released only minimal facts.
Contrast this with a month later, when two livery cab drivers were shot in the Bronx. One of the concession operators, who is also a spokesman for the New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers, stated at a press conference:
“We need to send a clear message, to those thugs…That you know what, maybe today you’re getting away with carrying a gun and not being searched, but we’re gonna look for ways to catch you.”
Why wasn’t the exact same statement made about the shooting at the concession? Is there a double standard when it comes to gun violence at Dyckman Marina vs gun violence elsewhere? Was the incident at the park site being downplayed in the public eye because the concession should not have been open past 11 pm or operating as a nightclub in the first place?
Following the shooting, various security measures at the site were “improved”, such as instituting bag checks earlier in the day, prohibiting the wearing of baseball caps, increased use of metal detectors and the installation of more cameras. While the NYPD may approve of these measures, did the Parks Department? Why? Is that the appropriate action here? To cover a park gate in WARNING signs and restrict access even further than it already is, rather than just eliminate the unapproved nightlife use and change in hours that caused the situation in the first place?
The July shooting was also not the first instance of gun violence being threatened at the concession.
Whether the above talk is real or just idle boasts, the relationship between gun violence and alochol is well established. So why are these nightlife uses happening on parkland?
Gun violence has increased recently in New York, and the city is now spending $13 million on a program to “prevent shootings before they occur”. Restoring the concession to its originally approved uses of a restaurant and marina costs far less and would greatly reduce the chance of gun violence on the site.