MASTIC BEACH - Homeowners in the village of Mastic Beach say their quality of life is being threatened, and they are calling on Suffolk police to do more to help.
Residents of the village have posted online videos of four-wheelers and motorbikers roaring through the streets, tearing up lawns and being nuisances. Rivera Road in particular, an unpaved stretch near the water, is an "invitation for people to come down and misbehave," according to Village Mayor Maura Spery.
Neighbors in the area say that beyond the disrespectful riders, they are dealing with vandalism and other disturbing finds. "Empty liquor bottles, hypodermic needles, condoms," says resident Geri Larkin. "And this has been going on for 24 years."
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Larkin says closing off the unpaved road and adding more police patrols to the area could help. Police say there is just one police car assigned to cover most of the 4.5-square-mile village.
"I can't complain about the fact that they try," Legislator Kate Browning says of the police effort. "But I think on a 24/7 basis, we really need to have another sector car down here."
Police officials say they believe one car is enough for now. They say that crime is down in the village, and note that plainclothes officers and gang team officers are also active in the area.
Police also say they are actively working to reduce illegal motorbike activity in the village.