Mayor Eric Adams is putting the onus of combatting New York City’s tidal crime wave on social media, suggesting they could ‘track’ and ‘identify’ people who promote violence as he doubles down on his concerns about ‘drill’ music.
The mayor, 61, was asked whether we need a better way to ‘track’ potentially dangerous individuals like Frank James, who shot 10 people in a subway in Brooklyn last week.
Adam said: ‘I think social media must step up. There’s a corporate responsibility when we are watching hate brew online. We could identify, using artificial intelligence and other methods to identify, those who are talking about violence,’ he said Sunday on ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos.
Crime in New York City is up 44.26 percent from this time last year and 27 percent from this time in 2020. Similarly, shooting victims have risen by 9.3 percent from April 2021 and 70.4 percent from April 2020.
The mayor has instituted a number of policies to curb crime – one of his main promises during the campaign. He announced a plan to move more officers from behind the desk and onto the streets earlier this year. After last week’s shootings, he pledged to double the number of officers patrolling the subway system.
But gruesome crimes continue to pile up. On Saturday morning, a married Queens mother-of-two was found dead inside a bloody duffle bag on the side of the road, less than half a mile from her home in Forrest Hills.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams called on social media companies to ‘step up’ and help track and identify dangerous people after a Subway shooting in Brooklyn left 10 injured last week
Subway shooting suspect Frank James, 62, was arrested on Wednesday after he was spotted walking down the street amid a citywide manhunt for him
Crime in New York City is up 44.26 percent from this time last year and 27 percent from this time in 2020. Shootings, felony assaults, rapes and robberies are all up
Crime continues unabated in New York City. Over the weekend, 51-year-old Orsolya Gaal (right), was found dead in a duffle bag less than a mile from her home. Above, she is pictured with her husband, Howard, who runs an equities advisory firm, and their two sons
New York City Mayor Eric Adams tells @GStephanopoulos that ¿social media must step up¿ to help identify those talking about violence online.
¿There’s a corporate responsibility when we are watching hate brew online.¿ https://t.co/oTT6AGBSaN pic.twitter.com/ruNJK3UKAi
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) April 17, 2022
Adams suggested that social media companies can do more to ‘track and identify’ possible criminals on Sunday.
The call-to-action comes after he pledged to double the number of officers on the Subway after last week’s attack.
Speaking from isolation due to a positive Covid test, he called on New Yorkers to remain ‘vigilant’ and to ‘immediately’ tell police if they spot anything ‘out of place.’
Reacting to the shooting, Adams told MSNBC: ‘We’re going to double the amount of uniformed officers. You’re going to see a double amount of officers.
Orsolya Gaal, 51, was seen by neighbor John Blankson Friday evening just walking about the yard with her dog
‘We also want New Yorkers to be vigilant, we want New Yorkers to immediately notify a uniformed officer if they see something that’s out of place.’
New Yorkers were greeted with news of another gruesome crime Saturday morning, when the body of a Queens mother was found stuffed inside a duffle bag.
The killer who murdered Orsolya Gaal, 51, sent her husband a text afterwards saying it was revenge for her sending him to jail years ago, according to unnamed police sources.
No one has been arrested for her death.
Police questioned her 13-year-old son Leo – who is thought to have been at home when she was killed – but he was released without charge.
Gaal’s equities advisor husband, Howard Klein, and their oldest son Jamie were out of town visiting colleges at the time of her murder.
After she was murdered, police believe the killer used her phone to text her husband and say ‘your whole family is next’.
Surveillance footage has also emerged showing someone in a hoodie wheeling the bag near her home at around 4.30am. The bag is similar to one used by her 13-year-old son and could have been taken from the home by the killer.
On Sunday, Adams slammed drill music. The style of rap, which originated in Chicago a decade ago and features realistic depictions of violence and death, has been on the mayor’s mind as crime rates continue to rise.
‘And, you know my concerns around even what’s called drill music,’ he said. ‘Not all drill music, but those that talks [sic] about inflicting violence on rival gangs, that is driving some of the shootings we’re seeing in parts of the Bronx.’
This isn’t the first time the new mayor, whose term began on January 1, has taken rap to task.
‘We pulled Trump off Twitter, because of what he was spewing,’ he said at a press conference back in February. ‘Yet we’re allowing music, displaying of guns, violence. We’re allowing it to stay on these sites.’
He was alerted to the drill rap videos which he says glorify killing after his son, Jordan Coleman, who works for Jay-Z, told him about it.
It was the death of Jayquan McKenley, 18, a drill rapper who goes by the name Chii Wvttz, who was killed outside a Brooklyn recording studio on February 6 that struck a chord with the mayor.
At the time, Adams said he wants to meet with high profile rappers and executives of the social media companies in a push to have the videos removed.
Growing up, drill rapper Jayquan McKenley, 18, went to five different high schools and programs as a teenager missed hundreds of days of school
McKenley who went b the name Chii Wvttz, was shot dead outside a recording studio in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood on Sunday
The mayor blamed the music and the videos for ‘causing the loss of lives of young people like them.’
‘You have a civic and corporate responsibility,’ he said back then. ‘We are alarmed by the use of social media to really over-proliferate this violence in our communities. This is contributing to the violence that we are seeing all over the country. It one of the rivers we have to dam.’
What is drill rap music?
Drill music is a sub-genre of hip-hop that is characterized by a dark, slow tempo, straightforward lyrics that focus on the dangers of criminal activity and an emotionless delivery.
The nihilistic rap style began in Chicago in the 2010s but has since expanded across the world.
The style of hip-hop has accumulated a strong following in Brooklyn and is accused to be a driving factor in the recent rise of gun violence targeting up-and-coming rappers
McKenley drifted in and out of homeless shelters while growing up in the South Bronx, according to the New York Post. He had a learning disability and often skipped school without assistance from the Department of Education.
‘I didn’t know Jayquan, but his death hit me hard because the more I found out about Jayquan’s story, the more I saw how many times he had been failed by a system that is supposed to help boys like him,’ Adams said.
McKenley’s death came after a number of other tragedies in the drill world.
Pop Smoke, a Brooklyn-born drill rapper, was killed during a home invasion in February 2020 in Los Angeles.
On January 27 of this year, Brooklyn drill rapper Nasir Fisher, also known a Nas Blixky, was shot in the head and left in critical condition. On February 2, rapper Tahjay Dobson was shot and killed outside his home in Brooklyn hours after inking a record deal, The Guardian reports.
Adams also blamed woke progressive policies for the city’s soaring crime rates – as he called for repeat offenders to be locked-up.
During the same interview with ABC This Week host George Stephanopoulos, the mayor said former NYPD Commissioner William Bratton was ‘right’ when he said on the Bloomberg Businessweek podcast last week that progressive policies have led to an increase in crime in Democrat-run cities.
He affirmed Bratton’s beliefs after the former commissioner’s comments were read back to him.
Speaking to Bloomberg, Bratton said: ‘The scales right now are tipped very heavily in favor of the reforms of the progressive left.’
Those policies, he noted, are ‘well intended, some needed, but a bit too far, and what we have as a result is this growing fear of crime, this growing actual amount of crime in almost every American city.’