Inside the Endless 911 Calls About 312 Riverside Drive

It turns out there is no 312 Riverside Drive in New York City
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 14, 2022 2:21 PM CDT
The 911 Calls About 312 Riverside Drive Didn't Stop
   (Getty Images / papparaffie)

Walter Reed is the only person on Earth who knows about the extreme troubles at 312 Riverside Drive on New York City's Upper West Side. Assaults. Fights. Stabbings. A potential terror cell. The 70-year-old has reported them all in thousands of calls to 911. Police have come up empty-handed, but not exactly because there are no crimes happening there. It's because there is no "there." As Michael Wilson reports for the New York Times, 312 Riverside Drive doesn't exist. And yet over 2020 and 2021, there were more than 4,000 calls placed by Reed about that address. Wilson sees it as an "extreme example of a familiar dynamic" in the city: "A vein of behavior outside the norms runs through the streets, not easily addressed by handcuffs or medication."

In Reed's case, officials say he believes the building is real and claims his girlfriend lives there. "They won’t let her leave that building. That’s the only reason I call 911," he has said. "There’s something about that location that reminds him of his previous trauma," a forensic caseworker tells Wilson. He reports that police have mostly just waved off Reed and the calls, which are easy to ignore thanks to his use of the same fake address. In an odd twist, Reed broke his phone over the summer, which caused him to miss court-scheduled appointments related to earlier petty crimes. Wilson writes that in "an irony bordering on the absurd," Reed was admonished by a judge and threatened with arrest if he didn't obtain a new phone. (Read the full story for much more.)

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