Newark opens new police precinct in North Ward

NEWARK, NJ —Newark officials announced the grand opening of a 7th Police Precinct Monday on North 10th Street in the northwest corner of the city in the Roseville neighborhood.

“This will be much better and much closer,” said Effie Jones, a North Ward resident.

The city’s mayor said this is all apart of their effort to curb crime in New Jersey’s largest city.

“This takes us one step closer to making this a safer city than it already is,” said Newark Mayor Ras Baraka.

Newark has seen success recently in reducing its crime rate, much to the credit of working closely with community members, said Newark Public Safety Director Anthony Ambrose.

“If you look at our crime rate this year, year-to-date today, it’s the lowest in over five decades,” said Ambrose.

Residents are happy that more men and women in blue will be right around the corner. About 50 will be reassigned from other precincts to man this new outfit. Newark is also planning to hire more. About 80 officers will join the force in December, with another class of 80 recruits to follow next year.

Officers at the 7th precinct will patrol everything west of Branch Brook Park, making neighborhoods safer near the borders of neighboring towns, including East Orange, Bloomfield and Belleville.

“I’m happy the precinct is here because that means my mother and father will have access to the police department. They will come and respond quicker,” said Amatullah Ali Muhammad, another city resident.

People here say the precinct serving them prior — is in shambles.

“I have gone over to Lincoln Avenue on numerous occasions and the building is terrible. Police officers shouldn’t be in there,” said Marilyn Gaynor.

The 2nd police precinct on Lincoln Avenue is housed in a much older building.

Residents will be greeted by police officers in the new 7th precinct building — face-to-face. Newark did not build a glass barrier in the lobby — which traditionally divides police officers from the reporting public.

Roughly 1-in-10 calls for police aide come from this section of Newark. Officials said today that this geographic area is larger than some nearby municipalities, and so getting a 7th precinct established here was crucial.

Historically, Newark used to have a total of 8 precincts.

It was just 5 years ago that the department suffered mass layoffs of over 400 police officers, in the midst of the economic recession.

Today, officials said that the department’s rebuilding is well underway.

“We were losing forces, losing resources,” said Mayor Baraka. “It is a huge testament to what is happening in our city that we have the capacity to open up a 7th district precinct here.”

This precinct will open to the public beginning at midnight on Nov. 19.