Ever Wonder What Shmira Members Are Doing at 2am?
Last night, Thursday May 10th at 2:20am, members of the Crown Heights Shmira responded to a routine call for help.
A Jewish family on President Street called asking for help.
Someone was banging on their front door and trying to break in.
Aroused from their beds in the middle of the night, the Shmira patrol arrived to find a Puerto Rican male with tattoos furiously banging on the front door.
Something seemed odd.
Who breaks into a house in such a loud way from the front door?
Something was wrong.
While the patrol had arrived, the man didn’t seem to even notice. In fact he looked a little drunk.
The men tried talking to him to find out what was going on.
Sensing that perhaps the man was simply drunk and disoriented.
While he was aggressive verbally, he wasn’t out to hurt anyone. In fact, he seemed to think what he was doing was quite normal as if anyone else would do it.
Police were called and responded quickly. The man had very slurred speech, appeared drunk and was babbling. He didn’t appear to be out to harm anyone.
In fact he didn’t seem to know where he was! The 2 officers from the 71st precinct, Officer Rosenberger and Officer Quinones soon arrived.
They too felt that something was odd. In questioning the man, one of the Shmira patrol who is also an EMT, asked the man if he is diabetic.
The man answered yes he is. “Perhaps, he is just having a sugar problem?”
Suggested the patrol member to police. “There’s only one way to find out”. And with that they gave him a little glucose.
As they had suspected, the man was diabetic and was simply having what is called: “Diabetic
Shock”. Diabetic Shock is also called “Hypoglycemia”. Hypoglycemia is a condition where the body has too little blood sugar. It can lead to a coma and death if not immediately treated.
With the help of a dose of glucose, the man soon regained his composure as if waking out of a deep sleep.
He tried to get up and and looking around, wondered where is and how he got there! An ambulance was called.
“We explained to the man what had happened and that he was found banging on someone’s door at 2 am. The man was very upset at disturbing people and apologized profusely explaining that he was having problems regulating his sugar levels.
He lived not too far away and thought he was banging on the door of where he lived trying to get in.” An ambulance later took the man to a local hospital for further treatment.
The men of Shmira gave kudos to Police Officers Quinones and Rosenberger for the time and sensitively they put into the call. Shmira’s being there for Crown Heights 24 hours a day is what really saved the day.
The Crown Heights Shmira formed in 1968 as it changed its name from the
famous “Maccabees” formed by Rabbi Shmuel Shraga in 1963.
Originally formed as a multi-ethnic patrol, it quickly caught media attention and was the inspiration for the famous “Guardian Angels”.
The controversial new patrol was the catalyst for New York City to change its policies about cutting police out of its budget. Budget cuts that seriously hampered police abilities to properly patrol city streets.
The lack of a police presence caused serious crime waves across New York City.
Crime that was swept under the rug of administration after administration who called it: “Racial Tension” to avoid hiring more police.
With the proven effectiveness of Rabbi Shmuel Shraga’s Maccabees came the truth: the city was simply being cheap at the expense of city residents.
The advent of the Crown Heights Maccabees resulted in increased police protection as New Yorkers enraged over increased crime, demanded increased police protection. Other neighborhoods simply followed the Maccabees approach and formed their own neighborhood patrols.
This caused embarrassed city officials to hire more police to counter the bad media they were getting on the subject.
In 1964, Discovery Channel aired a full-length story on Television, which forced the issue into the public eye.
Click Here for VideoToday, Crown Heights Shmira is still a very much active patrol, their dedication to provide the diverse multi-ethnic neighborhood of Crown Heights with visible protection has not changed.
Today, the city recognizes their good work and in fact they enjoy a long-standing positive relationship with local police.
To see more on their ongoing activities or to join or donate go to: www.chshmira.org.