July 1, 2005
The Honorable Andrew J. Spano
Westchester County Executive
900 Michaelian Office Building
148 Martine Avenue
White Plains, New York 10601
Dear Mr. Spano:
On behalf of the Rye Brook Board of Trustees, I would like to express our serious concerns with the continued existence of the homeless shelter and “drop-in” shelter center located at the Westchester County Airport in White Plains. These shelters, which are home to several Tier 3 sex offenders at any given time, create a very dangerous environment for the communities surrounding these facilities. The Village of Rye Brook strongly urges Westchester County to close these shelters immediately before someone else gets hurt or killed by a sex offender living at this location.
As you know, when the Rye Brook community was first made aware, several weeks ago (despite its long-time existence) of the homeless shelter and their occupants, the County, and most particularly our Legislator, Martin Rogowsky, did their utmost to mollify concerns. Indeed, Marty came to Village Hall, gave a rather extensive report, and put at ease, if not to rest, the fears of many people. He recently gave an update at the Bellefair Meeting House.
Our residents were mostly pleased to know that the shelters would be closed by year’s end. However, the deadly incident at the Galleria Mall parking lot by the convicted, multiple-rapist, and Tier 3 sex offender staying overnight at the Westchester County Airport “drop-in” shelter, not only elevated our fears, but calls for us to seek an immediate closure of these facilities. We must take action to remove these violent sex offenders from our community now.
While the Village of Rye Brook is very supportive of any legislation that would monitor, track and restrict the movement of Tier 3 sex offenders, any legislation would take additional time to enact and we do not have this luxury of time. Westchester County must close this facility and “drop-off” center before further harm befalls an innocent victim.
Even though these shelters are not physically located in Rye Brook, when Tier 3 sex offenders are placed at this airport location they can potentially harm school children, residents, and employees in Rye Brook, Harrison, Purchase, Armonk and Greenwich. We cannot run that risk.
Please give serious consideration to this request, and let me know how we can further support any legislative efforts to better monitor, control, and police the movement of these sex offenders.
CC: Martin Rogowsky, Westchester County Legislator Jeanine Pirro, Westchester County District Attorney