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Marine Parkers worry party boat shootings coming their way

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Call it a shot across the bow.

In the wake a shooting on May 25 at Sunset Park’s Brooklyn Army Terminal where party boats dock, residents of Marine Park and Mill Basin are even more worried such incidents are coming their way as the city plans to relocate some of the notorious Sheepshead Bay “booze cruises” to their area.

“It further reinforced my feelings about them bringing the boats here,” said Marine Parker Stella Panzarino. “We don’t want them.”

The city plans to relocate three party boats from the Emmons Avenue pier — where they have docked for years amidst complaints of public drunkenness, crime, and noise — to the waters off of Flatbush Avenue in Mill Basin, near the border with Marine Park. The original plan was to make the move in May, but the initiative has stalled.

The city’s plan sparked outrage among locals and politicians in and around Mill Basin, and community leaders are considering legal action to stop the boats from docking.

On May 25, police arrested a man outside of the Brooklyn Army Terminal, where other party boats currently dock, after he allegedly shot at a man during an argument.

One local said he doesn’t want dangerous incidents like this coming to Mill Basin.

“They have to think differently about security so people won’t have to worry about people drinking all night and getting into melees,” said Ken Rogers, of Marine Park.

Several Marine Parkers lashed out on Facebook about the shooting, calling it a reason why the boats should not come to their neighborhood.

Other locals used racially-charged language on Facebook to refer to the boat patrons. One person commented “Keep your ass out if here.boats bein there before you all came to this country.”

Many of the partiers are Caribbean-American, and some boat captains have accused critics of harboring racist opinions towards their patrons.

The city did not answer requests for comments on when exactly the boats will come to Mill Basin, and where they will dock. The local district manager said she hasn’t seen the boats off of Flatbush Avenue yet, and that the city has kept the community in the dark about their arrival.

“We’ve heard nothing,” said Dottie Turano of Community Board 18. “I don’t think they’re prepared for it.”

Reach reporter Adam Lucente at alucente@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow him on Twitter @Adam_Lucente.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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