Cops arrest the whole borough — with fun!

Cops and kids: Deputy Inspector Eric Rodriguez, Commanding Officer of the 70 Precinct, celebrates Night Out Against Crime with some neighborhood kids at the Parade Grounds on Aug. 7.
Photo by Steve Solomonson

Dozens of rug rats across Brooklyn were detained by the NYPD on Aug. 7 — in an inflatable bouncy house!

Police precincts throughout the borough hosted National Night Out Against Crime celebrations in their respective neighborhoods on Tuesday, drawing hundreds of families to an array of kid-friendly activities, good old-fashioned American cuisine, and a better understanding of New York’s Finest.

National Night Out Against Crime events began popping up in 1983, giving residents an opportunity to “take back the night” from what was then a growing criminal element. The events, held in communities across the country, were designed to heighten awareness of crime, and ways to prevent it.

But the Reagan-era Kings County was a different borough back then than it is today: as befitting the awesome ’80s, folks celebrated National Night Out Against Crime with parades and vigils to show crooks that decent tax-paying citizens — not the criminals — ruled the streets.

Brooklyn’s Night Out Against Crime bashes of today, however, are typically held in parks, and are more like a summer block party, with barbecues and games for kids.

For many, National Night Out Against Crime has become a yearly bonding ritual between residents and the cops who protect them, Lt. James Woods, the commanding officer of Patrol Borough Brooklyn South’s community affairs division, explained.

“On National Night Out the community show that they appreciate the police’s efforts and, vice versa, cops show their love of the community,” Woods said. “At the same time, kids are able to see police officers doing things other than arresting people.”

Reach reporter Colin MIxson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4514.

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