05/22/15 6:01am
05/22/2015 6:01 AM
Officer Montalnano walks his beat on East Main Street last week. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

Officer Anthony Montalbano walks his beat on East Main Street last week. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

Last year, a string of violent robberies targeting Hispanic and homeless residents in downtown Riverhead catapulted the town’s relationship with its Spanish-speaking communities back onto the front pages.

But despite the high-profile incidents that had some questioning the safety of Riverhead, year-round data compiled by the Riverhead Police Department tells a bit of a different story.

According to a monthly report recently released by the department, the total number of reported criminal incidents — especially drunken driving and drug possession — dropped in 2014 compared to the previous year. The report states that 3,447 incidents were documented by police last year, down from 3,502 in 2013.

That decrease continues an overall trend of fewer reported criminal incidents in the past decade, despite a growing population in Riverhead Town.

“The police department is doing a fabulous job,” said Riverhead Supervisor Sean Walter, who also serves as the town’s police commissioner. “Obviously, these past two weeks downtown we had some painful events. Hopefully that’s an anomaly.”

National trends show that fewer serious crimes have been reported nationwide during the same period.

Among the larger drops in reported incidents in Riverhead Town were driving under the influence arrests, down to 174 in 2014 from 209 in 2013. Incidents of drug possession and sales were also reportedly down from 101 in 2013 to 83 last year.

Car theft, burglaries and robberies were also down, according to the data.

The only criminal incidents to increase were larcenies, up slightly; two more rapes in 2014 and one more prostitution arrest than in 2013. More motor vehicle accidents were also reported in 2014 — a total of 2,169 — though there were slightly fewer fatal motor vehicle accidents.

Mr. Walter said the drop in criminal incidents is thanks to some “tremendous enforcement” by the department.

“From the police chief through the captain to the rank-and-file patrol officers in the sector cars, this is a testament to the work they do for this town,” Mr. Walter said.

psquire@timesreview.com

05/22/15 5:59am
The Riverside traffic circle is expected to be reconfigured, though it's not sure when. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

The Riverside traffic circle is expected to be reconfigured, though it’s not sure when. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

Funding that had been slated to reconfigure the Riverside traffic circle is now in danger of being diverted next year. But a movement is afoot to keep that money in place.

The infrastructure project is one that some say is critical to the hamlet’s future, particularly at a time when other efforts are in the works to improve quality of life in the economically distressed area of Southampton Town. (more…)

05/21/15 12:14pm
Juanita Devlin behind the cash register at her store Thursday morning. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Juanita Devlin behind the cash register at her store Thursday morning. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

A longtime Riverhead business will lock its doors for the final time Saturday.

Fisherman’s Deli, which first opened on West Main Street in 1981 as a place for fishermen to load up on food and supplies before hitting the open water, has been sold.  (more…)

05/21/15 10:08am

liveblog

The Riverhead Town Board is discussing the return of the JumpstArt event to downtown Riverhead in August, as well as Sunday’s Community Mosaic street painting fair with Pat Snyder of East End Arts at its work session on Thursday morning.

The board is also talking about the ongoing Brownfields Opportunity Area grant study in downtown, the sale of the East Lawn building, and the status of another vacant building the town owns on East Avenue.

Also, management training in First Aid and CPR is scheduled to be discussed.

The work session started at 10 a.m. and News-Review reporter Tim Gannon is blogging live.

Click below to follow or comment and scroll down for the full agenda.

Live Blog Riverhead Town Board work session 05-21-2015

 

May_21,_2015_-_Agenda by Timesreview