Volume 74, Number 27 | November 03 - 09, 2004

From left, 6th Precinct Deputy Inspector Theresa Shortell, Sergeant Guy Petersen, Elizabeth Butson, Detective Andrew Render, Michael Haberman and Officers Mike Burns and Chris O’Hare From left, Arthur Webb, C.E.O. of Village Care of New York, Officer Mike Petrillo, Sgt. Kevin O’Toole and D.A. Robert Morgenthau

Villager photos by Jennifer Bodrow

Anti-crime unit and community officer are Cops of Year

By Albert Amateau

The Greenwich Village Chelsea Chamber of Commerce presented its Cop of the Year Awards for 2004 to officers of the Sixth and 10th Precincts, covering the Village and Chelsea, at a lunchtime meeting last week where Lisa LaFrieda, a Chamber member who died in July, was also honored.

The Chamber donated $500 to The 9/11 Scholarship Fund for the children of people who died in the World Trade Center attack in the memory of LaFrieda, who was also a member of Community Board 2.

LaFrieda worked closely with the Sixth Precinct and its community council for many years, exemplifying volunteer community activism. Pat LaFrieda, her brother and partner with her in Pat LaFrieda Meats, and Marie Derr, a fellow member of Community Board 2, spoke about LaFrieda at the Oct. 27 Chamber event at Tiro a Segno, at 77 MacDougal St.

The Chamber chairperson, Michael Haberman, also announced the beginning of an annual Safe Cities, Safe Communities program, featuring a series of four free crime prevention seminars open to residents and to people who work in the two West Side neighborhoods.

The seminars, two in the Community Board 2 district covering the Village, and two in the Community Board 4 district covering Chelsea, will be conducted by police and staff members of Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau’s office at a time and place to be announce later. Morgenthau was also a special guest at the event.

Receiving the Cop of the Year Award for the 10th Precinct was Officer Mike Petrillo, community affairs officer of the precinct who was instrumental this year in responding to violations at two nightclubs in Chelsea. When two garish porn shops moved onto Eighth Ave. a few hundred feet from an elementary school, Petrillo investigated their compliance with the city’s administrative code and was instrumental in convincing the operators to tone down their window displays.

An officer in the 10th Precinct since 1990, Petrillo was a member of the Community Police Officer Patrol (C-POP) unit in the 10th Precinct and has been community affairs officer for 12 of those years.

The Sixth Precinct Anti-Crime team received the Cop of the Year Award for its 645 felony arrests and 625 misdemeanor arrests during the year. Led by Sergeant Guy Petersen, the team consists of Detective Andrew Render and Officers Mike Burns and Chris O’Hare.

The team broke a series of robberies that began in November 2003 when a ring of suspects posing as undercover police officers began robbing male victims at gunpoint in the West Village. After intense patrols and detailed interviews with victims, the team managed to apprehend a suspect, as he was about to strike again. The other members of the ring were also caught, convicted and sentenced to prison.

Elizabeth Butson, publisher emeritus of the Villager, and longtime member of the Chamber, made the awards. Butson and Arthur Webb, president of Village Care of New York, served as the steering committee for the event and for the Safe Cities, Safe Communities program.

Sponsors of the event this year were New York University, New School University, Travers O’Keefe Insurance and North Fork Bank.

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