NYC Mayor: Crime Down in 2014, ‘Working Very Hard’ to Resolve NYPD Work …

7 Jan 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Bill de Blasio slams protesting officers: ‘I can’t understand why anyone would do such a thing’.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner Bill Bratton heaped praise on the city’s Police Department Monday as they unveiled new statistics that show the crime rate dipped in 2014. The announcement came at a tense time for the mayor, who is caught between a public angry about excessive police force and a department angry that the mayor hasn’t been supportive enough in the wake of the fatal shootings of two officers last month. That’s the bottom line,” Mr. de Blasio said in his first remarks to the public about the officers’ protests, Mediaite reported. “They were disrespectful to the families who had lost their loved one,” the mayor added. “And I can’t understand why anyone would do such a thing in a context like that.” Police Commissioner William Bratton also condemned the officers’ actions at the news conference aimed to discuss the 4.6 percent drop in the city’s crime rate. Speaking during a press conference on year-end crime statistics in the city, Bratton was asked his opinion of cops turning their backs on the mayor during the funerals for officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu, who were killed in Brooklyn back on Dec. 20 by 28-year-old Ismaaiyl Brinsley in apparent retribution for the police-involved killings of unarmed black men in both Ferguson, Missouri and Staten Island.

It came a day after hundreds of officers turned their backs to a video monitor on which the mayor eulogized Officer Wenjian Liu, 32, just as they did at the funeral last week of his partner, Rafael Ramos, 40. Bratton’s answers were strong indictments against what he termed the “selfishness” of political actions by cops at a time when the city should have been mourning and healing. “I share the mayors concern about the idea of what is effectively a labor action being taken in the middle of the funeral,” Bratton said. “We are honoring the death of two police officers.

De Blasio credited the infusion of fresh resources for officers (from technology to new training) and reforms to “broken windows policing” which emphasized community engagement and phased out “stop-and-frisk” as well as some marijuana-related arrests as a major part of the NYPD’s success. “We addressed an issue that needed to be addressed,” the mayor said. Bratton also spoke to the issue of officer morale, conceding that “in some areas it is not what I would like it to be.” He suggested that the recent deaths of two NYPD officers was not the only factor frustrating police.

In what was first reported by the New York Post as a “virtual work stoppage,” NYPD officers have written 90 percent fewer summonses and made half as many arrests for a second straight week, compared with 2013, The New York Times reports. While he agreed with de Blasio that arrests for small amounts of marijuana were deemed a misuse of police resources, Bratton reiterated that there would not be a return to pre-1993 style policing. They didn’t break a single law and they didn’t utter a single word and yet their actions made a statement that was recognized nationally and have never been done before to any mayor in the nation,” Mullins said.

Prior to the shootings, Brinsley allegedly said on social media that he wanted to avenge the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, two black men whose deaths at the hands of police sparked nationwide protests over the excessive use of police force. City Hall sources told CBS2’s Marcia Kramer the mayor believes he has supported the cops — first by not bowing to critics and ordering an end to so-called “broken windows” policing, where people are arrested for small crimes on the theory that it stops bigger crimes, and also by increasing the NYPD budget. The mayor invested an additional $352 million for such things as training, hand-held mobile devices, security cameras and rebuilding dilapidated precincts, Kramer reported. I don’t share that perspective at all.” “Rather than get lost in the daily back and forth by the loudest and most disrespectful voices, those that have been so loud in this debate in recent weeks, let’s talk about a positive vision.

While de Blasio has managed to finalize contracts for most of the city’s union employees, talks with police unions have not yet produced agreement, with many arguing that officers are underpaid and working without contracts. It was recently reported arrests were down dramatically following the murders of officers Ramos and Liu and many speculated that it was the result of angry officers trying to send the mayor a message.

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