Park rangers look the other way as pot smoking becomes rampant in the parks

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July 5, 2015- By Steven E. Greer

At 8:55 PM tonight, I smelled the strong odor of marijuana coming from the Rector Place Park benches near the West Thames grass field. I called the park ranger office at (212) 417-3100 and Mr. Ramos answered. He explained that he would send units.

Ten-minutes went by and no PEP showed up, so I called at 9:06 PM. Mr. Ramos claimed that he dispatched officers, which conflicted with what I saw next.

I walked to the rangers office and saw one PEP slowly strolling out on West Thames at approximately 9:10 PM.

I walked with the PEP and pointed out the two young women who had been smoking the marijuana. The PEP officer walked right by them and did not even question them.

I then walked to the rangers office and confronted Sergeant Srisuro, asking him if it was acceptable for an officer to fail to investigate marijuana smoking, as this officer did, when the witness, me, is standing there pointing them out. He said that it was not acceptable, and he personally came to Rector Place Park.

Sergeant Srisuro began speaking to my doorman outside, not realizing that I was standing behind him. He claimed that his PEP officer told him that he did indeed speak with the two pot smokers, which was a blatant lie.

Upon further investigation with my doormen staff, I learned that pot smoking in the park is a routine occurrence. They said that when they call the PEP, similar responses have happened, whereby the officer made no attempt to investigate.

Mayor De Blasio is an advocate for decriminalizing personal possession of marijuana. There is clearly a citywide mandate given to the park officers to be lenient on pot smokers. Meanwhile, violent crime in the parks is at all-time highs.

Still no PEP seen patrolling the parks

Exclusive: Is the BPCA paying the city for no-show PEP officers?

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