I want to address the attack that took place on Forshay Road last Saturday night only 3 houses outside of Wesley Hills. I’m sure I was as shocked by you at this terrible crime and my thoughts and prayers go out to the victims.
In response to the attack, I arranged a meeting yesterday between all the Mayors in Ramapo and Town officials, including Supervisor Specht and Police Chief Weidel. The purpose of the meeting was to gain an understanding of what the Town is doing to enhance security and what information should be communicated to the public concerning how to protect their institutions and themselves.
The Town and Police department are taking several steps to enhance security including:
- Hiring additional Police Officers including veteran officers from other departments.
- Enhancing visibility of Police at sensitive locations.
- Upgrading dispatch software and systems to add GPS capability to reduce response times. The response time for this attack was only 2 minutes.
- Conducting active shooter drills.
- Purchasing a smart panic button system with video and 2-way communication capability to be installed at schools, religious institutions and businesses throughout the Town.
- Installing a license plate reader systems to ring the Town and allow for determining where suspect vehicles entered or left the Town.
- Town Police along with New York State Police will be conducting an assessment of every yeshiva and religious institution in the Town.
The Town Police advise residents of the following:
- When you see something, say something.
- Call immediately, later is too late.
- The more information you can provide, the better. Plate numbers, people or vehicle descriptions are important. Photos or video if possible are also very useful.
- When you call 911 from a hardline, the call goes directly to the Ramapo Police.
- When you call 911 from a cell phone, the call is routed through the County's system and you may be asked questions before your call is forward to the Ramapo Police. You can call the Ramapo Police directly at 845-357-2400.
- If a facility has armed security on site, that information should be shared with the Ramapo Police. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for the name of the Officer you can contact at the Ramapo Police.
- While institutions should manage security as they see fit, note that untrained, armed congregants could cause additional injuries.
- People need to hold down the fort until the police arrive. Mr. Gluck was the hero of Saturday night, throwing furniture at the assailant, luring him outside and getting the plate number. His heroic actions likely reduced the number of injuries and saved lives.
Marshall Katz, Mayor