NYPD Officer: Not Worth It to Make Arrests ‘if I Have a Chance of Getting My Head Blown Off’
by Dan Riehl
With reports that the NYPD is looking into as many as 63 threats against police officers, or the mayor this week alone, news also comes of a lack of motivation among the rank and file, undoubtedly contributing to a significant drop in arrest numbers across the city.
“[There’s] just not motivation,” one police officer told [Vice]. “I’m not writing people summonses if I have a chance of getting my head blown off.” When asked if this was his own choice or a precinct-wide initiative, the officer added, “Seems like the entire department is on the same page.”
As the New York Daily News reported, “citywide summons issued this past week numbered just 2,128, compared to 26,512 a week earlier. In that period, exactly one summons was issued in the 84th Precinct, where Liu and Ramos were stationed—just one.”
According to the Daily Beast, the police presence seems to have changed there significantly. “They just walk around, they ride in their patrol cars, and they just pass by,” according to a resident.
The changes have resulted in even more consternation, including among groups who were actually advocating for a move away from so called “broken windows” policing, first made popular during the Rudy Giuliani era. Evidently the reasoning behind any change is just as important to any potential change for some.
“We speculate, though we have no hard evidence, that some officers are pleased to engage in this ostensibly anti–de Blasio protest because they have never been comfortable with having to enforce ‘broken windows’ law enforcement,” Gangi added. “It engenders anger and distrust in the community and puts their physical well-being at risk.”
However, unlike Gangi, other reform groups were not as welcoming to the work stoppage. Joo-Hyun Kang, director of Communities United for Police Reform, one of the main organizing groups behind the recent protests, sees the move as an attack rather than an alternative universe for New York City. And the culprit? Lynch’s police union.