After serving as the commanding officer of the Central Park Precinct since 2020, William J. “Bill” Gallagher is bidding farewell to the 843 acres of metropolitan greenery and heading east.
According to Our Town, Gallagher succeeded Captain Anthony Lavino as of February 23, who has held the role of acting commander since August 2022 when he arrived from the 23rd Precinct in East Harlem. The New York City Police Department website has confirmed the appointment, and Gallagher’s headshot has been added to the 19th Precinct’s verified Twitter account. It’s 2023 after all, so being social media official is of utmost importance.
Gallagher’s new post shouldn’t be too much of a stretch; prior to his time overseeing the country’s most famous park, he was a captain at the 19th Precinct. His promotion to deputy inspector occurred in December 2021.
The 19th Precinct, located at 153 East 67th Street steps off of Lexington Avenue in a stunning Renaissance Revival structure completed in 1887 by NYPD architect Nathaniel Bush, serves the entirety of the Upper East Side from Sutton Place through Carnegie Hill. Though the ritzy neighborhood is more known for museums, Madison Avenue shopping and world-class dining than criminal activity, there’s still plenty to keep officers busy. This past week alone, there have been 34 instances of grand larceny, 67 cases of petit larceny, five assaults and a slew of other unsavory situations. In fact, in a community meeting in January, officers revealed grand larceny is on track to hit a historic high in 2023 — outpacing 2022, which saw 1,724 cases.
Though robberies may be somewhat down, mail theft is allegedly also on the rise. Last month, we reported that a luxury vintage store in the area blamed a stolen check on glue-like substance on a nearby mailbox.