Courtesis, who has commanded the 106th Precinct since April 9, 2007, is expected to remain at his current post. He is a 16-year year police department veteran with a solid police background working in precincts in Brooklyn and Queens.
Courtesis began his police career in 1993 in the 83rd Precinct in Bushwick. He was promoted to sergeant in 1998 and to lieutenant in 2001. Promoted to captain in 2004, he began a two-year tour as executive officer of the 106th Precinct. In 2006, he was assigned to the 113th Precinct in Jamaica as executive officer and returned to the 106th Precinct in 2007 as commanding officer.
Explaining his philosophy of police work, Courtesis said, “I believe that we work for the people in the community,” adding that the residents are the eyes and ears of the police. “We get our best intelligence from the community, so when they speak I listen.”
Courtesis said that due to the overwhelming number of complaints from community residents concerning noise, he had put noise abatement on the top of his list. The deputy inspector created a precinct-wide database of chronic noise locations so that precinct resources could be focused on these locations.
During his tenure as precinct commander, Courtesis said he has focused on keeping overall crime down in the 106th.
“That’s always a top priority to any precinct commander and it’s a top priority to me,” he said.
NYPD Compstat crime statistics for the 106th Precinct confirm Courtesis’s crime-fighting efforts, showing a 17 percent drop in overall crime for August 2009 compared to August 2008.
Regarding quality of life complaints, Courtesis said, “If you take care of the little things, the big things will take care of themselves.”
He said that addressing quality of life violations will, most likely, reduce robberies, burglaries, shootings, and other violent crime that result from the minor violations of the law.
“Quality of life is always the foundation to bringing down major crimes,” said Courtesis.
Courtesis set his goals when he first took command of the precinct.
“My goals are simple, to reduce crime, reduce accidents and increase the quality of life in the 106th,” he said.
The community, for its part, has expressed its appreciation.
“The promotion of Joseph Courtesis from captain to deputy inspector is well-deserved,” said Community Board 10 chairwoman Betty Braton. “Deputy Inspector Courtesis works very well with the community to collaboratively address the many policing issues of concern to the residents of the 106th Precinct.”
Frank Dardani, president of the 106th Precinct Community Council, said, “Courtesis is the most community-minded commanding officer we’ve had in a very very long time. He has done a great job in bringing the felony numbers down - the quality of life certainly has been much improved since he has been the commanding officer.”