CROWN HEIGHTS, Brooklyn [CHI] — Tens of thousands descended on Crown Heights for the annual West Indian American Day parade. The parade brings on dread for what is to come amongst Jewish resident, many of whom avoid returning from summer vacation until after the festivities.
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In previous years, the event has been marred by tragedy. In 1999, two children died when they were pinned between floats, and hours later a man was run over by a float and killed. In 2005, a man was shot to death, and last year a man was stabbed. There were no immediate reports of violence on Monday.
NYPD geared up and prepared for the parade as they have in previous years bringing in busloads of additional police officers, placed barriers all up Eastern Parkway and posted officers at every street corner in the neighborhood.
Turnout for this year’s parade was estimated at significantly less than in previous years, some say due to the high cost in gasoline prices which forced people to stay home.