(Lauren Evans) It's been nearly two weeks since the NYPD issued an edict banning police precincts from sharing crime reports with reporters. Despite the abrupt change in policy just weeks before a new administration takes office, the NYPD's communications division insists that nothing has changed, and that any and all public information has always been disseminated through its office.
This assertion might be true on paper, but in practice, it's blatantly false. For decades, reporters across the city have traveled to precinct houses each week to collect the crime reports, which are essentially long, jargon-filled print-outs of raw data. These reports—which are then translated into police blotters—describe cell phone snatchings, bathroom-window break-ins, felony assaults, and other incidents that may not merit citywide coverage but are of deep importance to neighborhood residents.
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