McGolrick Park Punks Vandalize, Start Fires & Assault Dogs

I was a bit put off when I saw a bunch of trees in McGolrick earlier this week wrapped in caution tape. I later found out that it marks trees that are due a pruning. After feeling relief that the trees are safe and healthy, I got wind of the vandalism in the park, which is not the first time this has happened to our beautiful McGolrick/Winthrop Park.

I have first hand seen kids starting fires there, stacking up picnic benches like legos and let’s not forget when the statue was covered in graffiti.

According to Brooklyn Paper, “the youths launched a particularly vicious campaign this week, brazenly vandalizing the park in broad daylight and setting fire to the maintenance building on Tuesday night — and holding a knife to the neck of one park-goers’ pooch.”

Why do they have to mess with innocent dogs?

Yesterday New 12 reported that, “crews are working to restore power to the park after the same group of teenagers are believed by parkgoers to have started an electrical fire…Local lawmakers tell us that they are working with police to either close the park earlier or install security cameras.”

We can’t let these punks ruin our beautiful park!

Aside from potentially closing the park at dusk and install cameras, how do you think we can prevent this behavior?

About Jen G

After living in NYC my entire life, I found the strongest sense of community in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Running this blog is truly an honor and the best part is meeting its readers in real life. Everyday I am energized by smiles and inspiring conversations with fellow Greenpointers who tirelessly do and create incredible things that are good for our community and share the same love I have for life here. If you see me walking with my little dog "D" - please say hi!

34 Comments

  1. Ben says:

    Get community members involved; organize; recruit; report. Relatively straightforward.

    Reply
  2. Gina Santonas says:

    I have had run ins with these punks. I think the -park should be closed at night. I don’t understand why they can’t put gates on the fences and lock them. I have seen cops during the day driving with their lights on. What is that going to do? They need under cover cops walking through. Instead they were harassing this black teen who had worked that morning for the Parks Dept. I was pissed at that. He is sitting there peacefully and they harass him because he doesn’t look like most neighbors. The neighbor teens are the ones doing the damage. They are like the “Lost Ones” who think they own the place. I bet they are the same ones who threw black paint all over the Monitor statue.

    Reply
    • Jen G says:

      cops definitely need to be on patrol there at night. closing the gates might work, too. kids can jump the fence but it would help, too. just sucks to have to shut it down. i do like to stroll through at night with the BF. seems like we will all be suffering if it is shut down at night altogether.

      Reply
  3. Daniel says:

    I think the problem is that the central area is so dominated by teens that it feels uncomfortable for others to use. If it were truly a shared space where teens negotiated with a farmers market or other community events, the teens would feel pressure to be more civilized. Until then, just station a police officer there every night. Its so frustrating that there are nights when that central area is swarming with teens and there isn’t a cop anywhere nearby. Obviously, there will be major problems eventually if that is allowed to happen.

    Reply
  4. Awilson says:

    A bunch of old hipsters need to start a gang and hang out there at night to pick fights with the teens “This is our park, see! Scram yah vagabonds!”

    Reply
  5. Laura says:

    Why not just stick an undercover cop there for a week or two? When they act up, haul them all in.

    Reply
  6. E says:

    The Greenpoint community should have nightly meetups in the park – if there’s 200 people congregating together in the park, it’s gonna be a lot harder for people to cause trouble.

    I don’t even live near McGolrick, but I would still go!

    Reply
  7. robert says:

    How about you leave the kids the hell alone and stop being punks yourself and confront them in person when you see them in the park you guys are all cowards when I was a kid in greenpoint we used to do worse shit and you guys are complaining about spray paint which they cover up the next day? So everyone that commented go to the park tonight at like 1030 and confront the kids and we will see whose not punks because these kids destroy shit and still have the balls to hangout in the park with the cops there and you guys are scared to walk past them and start a conversation?? My friends kids hangout there and there not bad kids so try to talk to them and not be punks yourself

    Reply
    • Jen G says:

      When they were lighting pizza boxes on fire, we did confront them. They were disrespectful little jerks and we called the cops. Imagine if some of those amazing old trees went on fire. I was a kid in NYC too and defacing the park was an a-hole thing to do then. I can’t believe you are defending this behavior. It’s not about being scared of them. Although as a small female this is ridiculous advice to give.
      “Hi kid who is spray painting and starting a fire – let’s have a conversation.” That will go over well.

      Reply
      • robert says:

        So then dont complain this is their neighborhood and you guys making this article about kids is very immature and ima go with my nephew to the park at 3 you guys and girls can come talk to him and his friend and ill make sure there respectful and make sure you see there not bad kids

        Reply
        • Jen G says:

          i have no problems with your nephew; i’m sure they are great. i don’t understand how it’s immature to write about vandalism and fire in our park. This is not “their” neighborhood. it’s everyone’s who lives here and pays taxes to enjoy the park.

          Reply
        • Not Important says:

          Robert-

          Attempting to read what you’re writing is giving me a headache. Give punctuation a chance.

          Reply
      • robert says:

        And why don’t you not give attitude and talk like a grown up you can tell them to stop lighting fires because I doubt they spray paint there because I walked through the park and I saw south side painted on the walls and when you tell them to stop ask them why they do that to the park and why don’t they do something more productive because I saw myself a few times when there was a fire some of the teens helping put it out so why make them seem like horrible kids when they are just trying to find something to do with their time so why dont we make a patition to put a basketball hoop in the park or something instead of talking crap about these kids?

        Reply
    • Daniel says:

      Sure, they’re all good kids when they are at their best (visiting grandma or whatever) but when they are left to themselves and left to the social pressures of fitting in as a teen, they sometimes act like punks and get caught up in trouble. Thats just the way it is. We, as responsible adults, need to realize that and not create the conditions for good kids to get caught up in bad trouble. We don’t need to confront a crowd of teens. That is a recipe for disaster.

      I grew up in a neighborhood very similar to Greenpoint. The kids that hung out on corners harassing people and starting trouble were definitely punks. Everyone knew that even if their own parents were kidding themselves about it.

      Reply
      • Jen G says:

        i was a total asshole when i was 14. if i could go back and slap myself i would.

        Reply
      • robert says:

        Daniel there not punks you are the punk for not talking to them so if you guys don’t show up at 3 and I’m their with my nephew because he tells me everything they do unlike you family me and him have a bond so if you don’t show up at 3 he’s gonna confront you and trust we will find out who you are because I already showed him this article and him and his friends want to prove that their not all bad

        Reply
          • robert says:

            All I’m saying is by 330 if your all not there you guys can’t call noone punks besides yourself because the cops are gonna be there and I am going to be also so they aren’t gonna get out of hand there just going to talk and explain theirselfs and that’s it

          • Jen G says:

            it’s a threat on proving politeness. so new york. so strange.

        • Daniel says:

          Robert, you don’t seem like a reasonable man. And I can tell by the way you communicate that a conversation with you or your family would go very badly. Also, its not my responsibility to care about you and your nephew specifically. Just understand that if your innocent little angel is starting fires, harassing people or vandalizing buildings, he is a criminal. And maybe someday you can tell a judge how he’s not a punk.

          Reply
  8. SixFootTwo says:

    Just go in there with a bunch of people and confront them if the cops won’t. Unless they have guns which I doubt 20 or 30 people with or without walking canes should do the trick. If hipsters are going to confront them then make that 40-50 people.

    Reply
  9. Stacy says:

    I have seen these punks in action. It is the same damn kids that you find under the building at night, and messing with the bums as well as just random people who are walking around. Everyone knows them by sight, so why not just go around and ask people in the community to point out the lil blighters?

    About 2 weeks ago one of em started with a guy just walking down driggs and kept threatening to punch the old man, for no reason. The cops flashed their lights, bleeped their sirens, so the punks scattered like roaches, and then drove right passed them, doing nothing. The cops seem to be the bigger problem with not caring enough to stop. Seriously..the punks know they can get away with it and the cops won’t take the time to stop em, so why should they stop?

    Reply
  10. Diamond Guy says:

    Fuck these kids. I was there just the other weekend and they were blowing up M80s in the park. Their parents clearly aren’t doing their job, so why don’t we round em up and let them fight to the death in McCarren Pool, Battle Royale style.

    Reply
  11. Ambiguous says:

    Being one of the teens who frequent this park I’d just like to say that the entire motivation behind these actions are due to boredom. However I can’t place myself in the group the is doing this vandalism that this blog loves to gossip about, I am able to say that I’m close friends with these deviant punks. Please before either talking semi-anonymously and fervently about the actions of us in the park, take a moment to actually let me and my friends know that you’re upset. If you still find yourself in a situation where you continue to talk about how punkish we all are or how stupid we may or may not be, then it can be said that you and the embodiment of this blog are a joke. You guys made a difference for sandy and god bless you for that, but if you’re really going to complain and bitch behind a monitor without any intent of me and my friends seeing, then you and your friends are a detriment to the park, whether you like it or not you’re just making it seem like a horrible place to be. Just merely confront us, doesn’t have to be in hostility, because that will get you nowhere. But just show the other kids that you’re a human being who’s being effected by what they’re doing.

    Reply

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