Town Hall Meeting with District Attorney Cy Vance Jr.

Posted on: April 21st, 2011 at 8:57 am by

On Wednesday evening, New York County District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., in conjunction with CB3, held a Town Hall Meeting at P.S.20 (aka the Anna Silver School on Essex Street between Stanton and Houston Streets).   The purpose of the neighborhood get-together was for residents to meet the DA and learn more about how their office works to help the community. Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, high-ranking members of the NYPD, and officials from council member Rosa Mendez and Senator Tom Duane’s staff were on hand for the meeting.  In his remarks President Stringer said “what Cy is doing is bringing his vision, his way of looking at crime and breaking new ground in ways we haven’t seen.”

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The NY County District Attorney’s Office has over 500 Assistant District Attorneys and handles more than 100,000 cases each year.  During the presentation, the DA focused on several informative topics.  He spoke about how his office is divided into several different units – Crime Strategies Unit, Community Affairs Unit, Special Victims Bureau, Witness Aid Services Unit, Vehicular Crimes Unit, the Immigrant Affairs Program and the Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau.

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The Crime Strategies Unit is an intelligence-based prosecution.  It focuses on offenders who cause trouble the most; the Community Affairs Unit contains community outreach and partnerships to enhance public safety.

The Special Victims Bureau gives assistance to victims of sex crimes, elder abuse and family violence.  For the DA domestic violence is a very high priority.  “We had more domestic violence reports in 2010 than in 2009,” said the DA.  “We have many repeat domestic violence offenders coming through our system.”  Borough President Stringer has made a $3 million commitment to help build a family justice center that will give counseling and support services to aid victims of domestic violence.

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The Vehicular Crimes Unit investigates, prosecutes and prevents vehicular crimes; the Immigrant Affairs Program extends full protection of the law to vulnerable immigrant communities; and the Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau specializes in crimes committed on the internet and crimes of identity theft.  “We have 200-300 cases of identity theft each month,” said the DA.

At the conclusion of the meeting the DA took time to praise his hard-working and devoted staff.  “I am extremely proud of the work our lawyers are doing in serving the county,” said DA Vance Jr.

Written by Andrew Cohen

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