East River Neighbors is a peaceful, constructive response to a violent incident: an East River resident was stabbed inside his own apartment by an intruder with a large kitchen knife. This happened in August 2022.
The intruder—a stranger with no connection to anyone in our East River Co-op—had been let into the Grand Street door of Building 1, took an elevator to the top floor, and gained access to the roof through a roof door that has been unalarmed and unmonitored for several years (and continues to be unalarmed, as of 3/1/2023). We know he did this because it was all recorded on the security cameras—cameras which, like the roof door, were also unmonitored by the security guard on duty.
The intruder spent the night on the roof. Early the next morning, he used the scaffolding of the crew that had been working on the cop-op’s brick façade to climb down to the resident’s terrace. He then removed a small air conditioner from a terrace-facing window, and entered the apartment, took a large knife from the kitchen, and when a resident in the apartment was awoken by the noise, he encountered the intruder, who stabbed him while trying to flee the apartment. Fortunately, the resident was not seriously injured and was able to call 911.
Two days later there was another incident in East River Co-Op, this time in the Child Development Center in Building 2: an intruder, apparently homeless, entered the center’s playroom while there were children present. Fortunately one of our security guards saw him and intervened, chasing him away before anyone was harmed.
News of these two incidents initially spread slowly through our community by word of mouth and through the I Live in East River Housing Co-op Facebook group, including some wild rumors and a fair amount of misinformation, some of it from building staff. Our management office eventually sent out an email and posted flyers by the elevators about the incident, including a photo of the intruder from a Building 1 hallway security camera, but the photo did not show the large knife in his hand, and the accompanying description of the incident did not include the fact that a resident was actually stabbed. Nor did management’s email and flyers mention that the stabbing could have been prevented if the roof door alarms were activated and monitored, as they are supposed to be, let alone if there was better lobby security.
Did you know that these two things happened? As someone who lives in East River and, as many of you do, has money invested in the co-op, does it concern you?
If you think it’s important to be told these things and you realize you are not being told important things that are happening in our community here, then you now also know our story. We think it’s important to know.
In the aftermath of these events, a small group of neighbors reached out to a few more neighbors to discuss how to improve communication between our 1534 apartments and nearly 4000 residents.
And now here we are — East River Neighbors — reaching out to you!
And there's a lot of information to be had, with four buildings, two parks, 70-year-old infrastructure, and almost 4000 residents. We could all benefit from better communication among residents, and from better communication between residents and management. So the initial goals of this group — East River Neighbors — are:
• To share with our neighbors news about what’s happening in our co-op and in the neighborhood around us.
• To share concerns with management, and to share info from management about its plans for the co-op.
• To share tips about how to get things done.
• To ask residents what they think works best here, what most needs improving, and what they’ve seen elsewhere that could be helpful at East River.
As our East River Board President, Gary Altman, has said, "We are not a small town here in East River. We are a large town." We at East River Neighbors echo that thought. We should have an active and vibrant town square.
Want to know more? Want to be informed? Want to get involved? Contact Us.
• Sign up to our mailing list to receive a monthly newsletter and special communications:
• Read our Open Letter, which has already been distributed to all 1534 apartments: