08/08/19 -- 91st Military Battalion Moving to Staten Island

August 8, 2019

RED HOOK — In a public press-conference on the steps of the Red Hook Municipal Building, Mayor Catherine Short outlined the plans for the 91st Military Battalion to move their operations from the NYC Safe Zone to Staten Island. The 91st, who had been serving as the de-facto law enforcement of New York City since the establishment of the Safe Zone, handed over those duties to the newly reformed NYPD in June of this year.

Mayor Short outlined that the 91st presence in Staten Island is intended to be a "stabilizing factor." Confronted with the realities of organized crime and the dark history of the last government push to "tame" Staten Island, Mayor Short was careful not to invoke the specter of Colonel Leon Heller, who presided over the formation of the now defunct Outer District in what was once the Staten Island Reclaimed Zone.

However, that has not stopped the court of public opinion from publicly castigating Mayor Short for her efforts. A small group of protestors opposed to the use of Military Police as law enforcement in peacetime shouted chants and held signs across the street from the Municipal Building. The Siren spoke to one protestor who did not volunteer their name who told us, "The government has already criminalized free assembly in areas outside of the Safe Zone. Sending in the military police to enforce that rule of law is unconstitutional."

Proponents of the measure indicate that while the United States is in a state of peace the Posse Comitatus Act — which limits the power of the US military to enforce laws — has still not yet been reinstated since it's dissolution in 2010 during the Petrelli administration.

State and federal lawmakers have indicated that until the United States finds itself capable of utilizing civilian law enforcement nationwide, leaning on the assets of the US military are essential provided they're done in a "careful and considerate measure" as Democratic Presidential hopeful Frederick Medina stated during a town hall-style meeting in Kansas City last week.

The 91st Military Police Battalion is scheduled to move into the remains of Miller Field on Staten Island sometime in September.

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