Wednesday, September 10, 2014

NYPD Issues Tickets For Prospect Park Curfew


Pedestrians in Prospect Park have been left bewildered by a recent ticket crackdown by the NYPD.

As CBS 2’s Jessica Schneider reported, they said they were just walking through after dark when they got slapped with summons.

Geoffrey McFarlane was given a ticket and a court date for simply walking down a path in the park.

“This is the most convenient way to go,” said McFarlane, of Brooklyn, “and I was just strolling through.”

McFarlane was stopped by NYPD officers last Tuesday around 11:15 p.m. They gave him a ticket for remaining in a park after dark – something McFarlane had no idea was illegal in the part of the park he was passing through.

“It’s the first I’m hearing of it, and I’ve lived here for five years,” McFarlane said.

The problem is that near the path, there is no sign anywhere that the park is closed after dark. But around the corner, a close look reveals you can find one.

“It’s about a block and a half away, right over here, where you couldn’t possibly see it from that entrance,” McFarlane said.

McFarlane said he was with five people ticketed that night.

And it is not as simple as just paying a fine. McFarlane also has to appear in court to dispute the charge.

“A warning would be nice,” McFarlane said. “Maybe park right over here where there’s great parking spaces for police vehicles, and when people try to walk in, just let them know, ‘Hey, park’s closed!’”

The dozens of people CBS 2 saw going through the park also had no idea they were doing anything wrong. Lindsay Harrison of Park Slope said she always rides through the park on her bicycle.

“We play soccer at fields a couple of times a week,” Harrison said.

She said she had never heard of the area being closed after dusk, and added that she would be “annoyed” about the ticket.

McFarlane was feeling the same frustration.

The city Department of Parks and Recreation did not respond to CBS 2’s requests for comments.

Neighborhood leaders said police officials will address concerns at a community meeting Wednesday night.

Read More:

Prospect Park Pedestrians Baffled By Ticket Blitz
WCBS - September 9, 2014 - By Jessica Schneider

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