NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) - On Thursday, Mayor de Blasio and Police Commissioner O'Neill held their monthly briefing on crime stats in the city. Overall, they touted that 2017 will be the safest year on record.
"Major crime is down 8.1 percent from last July, and it's dropped in all five boroughs," said Mayor de Blasio.
Former NYPD sergeant Manny Gomez said there's been a downward trend in crime for years, starting before de Blasio took office. He commends the mayor and Police commissioner for their efforts, but admits there's a concerning homeless problem, among many other issues.
"We still have gang activity, and that has been going on for a while and they're tackling it head on, but it's still an issue and it will continue to be an issue," said Gomez.
John Eterno is a retired NYPD captain and social scientist who believes the city crime stats released are inaccurate. In a statement, he tells us:
"Crime is down in every index crime category with little or no fluctuation over nearly 25 years. Police have used a variety of methods and mayors and police commissioners have all congratulated themselves. Based on my research, commanders are put under enormous pressure to make sure the numbers go down."
Regarding assaults, cops claim there are about 11,500 felony assaults this year to date. But according to a document we found online from the city's Health Department, there's about 22,000 emergency room visits for assaults at city hospitals each year. This is from 2012 to 2014, but it's the most recent one posted on the Health Department's website. Fox 5 asked the NYPD about this discrepancy in assault numbers, this was their answer.
"First thing that comes to my mind there, and again you would need to be a data junkie as I am and dig into those numbers. I would need to see it and see what you're describing," said Dermot Shea, NYPD Chief of Crime Control Strategies.
As for the rest of the summer, the Mayor and Police Commissioner expect next month to be the safest August in history.