Monday, February 28, 2011

Tree Abuse Fines Reach $ 123, 000

LEAF IT ALONE! A vandalized Queens tree.
A vandalized Queens tree in front of 47-12-156th St. On December 7th, 2010 Park Enforcement Patrol (PEP) issued an ECB summons to resident Jie Lin for permanent tree damage. (Photo:
Helayne Seidman)


City trees are being tortured.

More than 100 tree-haters were busted for arborcide in 2010, and the police have already issued 18 summonses this year, according to city and court records reviewed by The Post.

Incidents include a Christmas-night massacre of six saplings at the Playground of the Americas on Houston Street and a contractor who caused "major tree damage" to five honey locusts on Chambers Street earlier this month.

"Some of this is just outright abuse," said Geoffrey Croft of the watchdog group NYC Park Advocates.

Some of the worst and incidents include:

* An emotionally disturbed man with a briefcase who allegedly destroyed multiple trees in the Battery Park City area last November.

* An attack in Juniper Valley Park in Queens, where vandals removed 10 young trees and their 12 stakes last November. The trees and bike path were also sprayed with swastikas and racist graffiti in shaving cream.

* A Queens woman who stripped all the limbs off a grand Norway maple in front of her house on 156th Street last December.

* Vandals who tore up 20 new trees and bushes in the Nelson Avenue playground in The Bronx last October.

* A tree in St. Nicholas Park uptown that was set on fire last September.

A street tree costs the city $1,790 to plant, and tampering with its limbs can kill it, Croft said.

Arboreal abusers were slapped with $123,000 in summonses last year, according to city Environmental Control Board documents.

Read More:

New York Post - February 27, 2011 - By Heather Haden
100 charged with tree abuse in NYC in 2010
The Wall Street Journal Via - AP - February 27, 2011

DNAinfo - February 27, 2011 - By Adam Nichols

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