UPDATE: The 94th Precint towed the van on Wednesday.
An “abandoned” chevy van with New Jersey plates and an expired inspection has been parked for over one year across from John Ericsson Middle School (424 Leonard St) on Manhattan Avenue between Newton and Bayard streets where it has accumulated multiple citations, Greenpoint residents claim.
“It is incredibly sketchy, especially because it’s near a school,” said a woman who lives in a building near where the van is parked. “There is a mattress in the back, and sometimes I’ve seen the back door ajar,” she wrote to Greenpointers stating her concern for the proximity of the van to the middle school.
An online search shows that the black chevy van has 10 unpaid tickets mostly for street sweeping violations totaling $620 dating back to March 2018. The Greenpoint woman claims that multiple neighbors have reported the van to 311 and the 94th Precinct:
I live in the building across the street, and numerous residents have tried to get rid of the van. We’ve reported it multiple times to the police department using their online portal, but nothing happened. We were told to call during street cleaning hours (12-2am) to get it towed, but again nothing happened. Someone went to the station to report it and was told that it can’t be towed because the registration is up-to-date, which doesn’t make sense because the sticker in the windshield says 2017. There are parking tickets on it dating back over a year.We would really like this mobile den of iniquity off our block, away from the school, park and pool.
We’ve been concerned about the van for a long time. The doors are all unlocked and there’s a mattress in the back. It’s creepy and it’s a bad scene waiting to happen.
When I filed an abandoned vehicle report with 311, I was impressed at first. They gave me a tracking number and the next day I got a message saying it had been referred to the 94th Precinct.
Hours later I got another message saying the complaint had been resolved. I later found out that their resolution was to close the complaint without doing anything. I wasn’t as impressed by that.
Another group of neighbors spoke to a police officer who advised them to wait until the van was violating the street cleaning regulations – midnight to 1:30 am – and then go to the precinct to get it towed. They did that. The precinct blew them off.
Greenpointers has reached out to the 94th Precinct for comment and will update with any additional information.