Major League Baseball veteran Mo Vaughn and his business partner Eugene Schneur, who co-own the West Village Apartments on Ithaca's West Hill, are providing funding for extra police patrols in the troubled neighborhood. The Ithaca Police Department's new police chief, John R. Barber, says Vaughn and Schneur are chipping in $12,000 for what IPD refers to as "saturation patrols."
West Village Apartments. Photo by Akane Otani, Cornell Daily Sun, used with permission.According to IPD, patrols consisting of two officers will patrol on foot "so that they can interact with community members, gaining their confidence." Then acting chief of police, Chief Barber ramped up foot patrols in the area this spring, saying, "Right now we need officers on the streets to stop these senseless acts of violence and to prevent future similar acts."
IPD participated in a West Hill community meeting at the Lehman Alternative Community School last week, seeking input and discussion "regarding crime and the quality of life on West Hill." Mayor Svante Myrick adds that he's authorized overtime for the foot patrols, and that the $12,000 donation "will more than cover the investment we've made to date."
The ramped-up patrol approach "seems to be working," says Mayor Myrick. "There's still crime, but over the last four months the rate has decreased significantly."
Vaughn is a repeat All-Star selection for Major League Baseball in a successful career with the Boston Red Sox, Anaheim Angels, and New York Mets. He and Schneur, a graduate of Cornell University's College of Industrial and Labor Relations, are partners in Omni New York LLC, the developer that owns West Village Place.