Oversight agency for NYPD claims police made riots worse by using force to stop the riots

Share:

NEW YORK CITY, NY – A 111-page report from the New York City Department of Investigation (DOI) alleged that the New York Police Department mishandled the George Floyd protests during the summer of 2020 due to inadequate preparation and the use of excessive force.

The DOI report, released December 18, 2020, was the culmination of a six month investigation into the often-violent George Floyd protests in New York City.  Mayor Bill de Blasio requested this investigation via Executive order in June 2020.

The report asserted that the NYPD:

 “lacked a clearly defined strategy tailored to respond to the large-scale protests of police and policing.”

It went on to say that “disorder control” tactics “exacerbated confrontations between police and protesters, rather than de-escalating tensions.”

The report next doubled down on this premise, claiming:

“NYPD’s use of force on protesters—encirclement (commonly called “kettling”), mass arrests, baton and pepper spray use, and other tactics—reflected a failure to calibrate an appropriate balance between valid public safety or officer safety interests and the rights of protesters to assemble and express their views.”

The DOI also added that:

“Some policing decisions relied on intelligence without sufficient consideration of context or proportionality.”

The report then specifically cited the protest in Mott Haven on June 4, when police received actionable intelligence on potential violence.  They discovered a gun, fireworks, lighter fluid, bricks, and knives among protesters.  Officers subsequently arrested many protest attendees for curfew violations.

Claiming that “intelligence alone does not necessarily dictate a particular police response,” the DOI went on to note:

“In the case of the Mott Haven protest, for example, where NYPD had specific intelligence that may have warranted heightened concerns, its mass arrest of protesters for curfew violations, in the absence of evidence of actual violence, was disproportionate to the circumstances.”

The report also lamented the lack of “Community Affairs” personnel at protests.  

In addition, it criticized the NYPD for lack of “relevant training,” but then stated the department’s specialized training in riot management was too “heavily focused on disorder control methods, without a sufficient community affairs or de-escalation component.“

DOI Commissioner Margaret Garnett reinforced and bolstered these findings to CBS News, claiming:

“Our investigation found that the NYPD, as an institution, made a number of key errors or omissions that likely escalated tensions and a potential for violence.”

She added:

“The NYPD’s tactics often failed to discriminate between lawful, peaceful protesters and unlawful actors.”

Among the DOI’s recommendations in the report was a call for a new policy directed at handling protest events, compiled with the aid of “civil rights attorneys, community organizations, and police reform experts.”

In addition, the report recommended that the role of the Strategic Response Groups and Disorder Control Units be re-evaluated with regards to protests, and if  “riot gear” or “hard uniforms” are deemed necessary, that the personnel wearing such gear be out of sight of protestors.

Also, police are to be subject to “standardized daily messages” that “includ[e] guidance about the constitutional rights of protesters and the objectives of the response.

The report also recommended that a single, external independent board be created to oversee the NYPD, handle complaints, review policy and practices, and “periodically audit NYPD’s internal discipline and anti-corruption efforts.”

Garrett explained to the New York Daily News:

“Fair and effective policing is vital to public safety and the key ingredient in that is public confidence that the police are subject to robust oversight.” 

She continued:

“That informed our ultimate recommendation that the Mayor and the city council consider consolidating existing police oversight functions into a single agency headed by an independent board.”

Democratic New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio received the report favorably.

In a six-minute video statement, he said:

“I have read this report, and I agree with it.  

“I agree with its analysis, and I agree with its recommendations, because it makes very clear we’ve got to do something different.”

De Blasio also added in his statement:

“Black Lives Matter is not just in words.  It must take immediate form.  

“It must be real.  It must be something we put into action.”

The mayor went on to praise those who were “demanding accountability from their city, from their police,” and added:

“George Floyd didn’t die in vain.  I know it.  I feel it.”

Noting that the “vast majority of officers did their jobs and respected people’s rights,” de Blasio asserted that there were “strategic choices made that weren’t good choices, it turns out, that ended up causing problems.”

He added: 

“We have to come to grips with that.  We have to train our police force differently.”

Saying he had spoken to NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea, de Blasio noted:

“[H]e agrees.  We accept the recommendations of the Department of Investigation.

“We’re going to implement them right away.”

Commissioner Shea, for his part, confirmed de Blasio’s statement of his agreement with the report, saying:

“In general terms, the report captured the difficult period that took place in May/June of 2020 and presents 20 logical and thoughtful recommendations that I intend to incorporate into our future policy and training.”

Not everyone received the report favorably, however.

For the New York Civil Liberties Union and the Legal Aid Society, the recommendations did not go far enough.

According to USA Today, the two organizations “said the report confirmed ‘the shocking violence’ during the protests was tied to failures by Mayor Bill de Blasio, Shea and other NYPD leadership.”

However, in a statement they also asserted:

“But simply instituting more training and shifting responsibilities around is not a solution.”

Their statement went on to say:

“The fundamental problem is a Department whose leadership and culture allowed the events of this summer to unfold, refuses to confront its own conduct, and does nothing to address the root causes of these long-standing problems.”

Noting that police were often on the receiving end of violence at the protests, Police Benevolent Association President Patrick J. Lynch held the actions of government officials responsible for the violence in the summer of 2020.

He stated:

“Nearly 400 police officers were injured — struck with bricks, bottles, fire extinguishers and folding chairs — because of the mixed messages emanating from City Hall and Albany.”

Lynch went on to add:

“No amount of new training or strategizing will help while politicians continue to undermine police officers and embolden those who create chaos on our streets.”

Do you want to join our private family of first responders and supporters?  Get unprecedented access to some of the most powerful stories that the media refuses to show you.  Proceeds get reinvested into having active, retired and wounded officers, their families and supporters tell more of these stories.  Click to check it out.

LET Unity

Below is an article published here on May 29, 2020 – a stark reminder of the violence and threats against police in the midst of the George Floyd “peaceful protests”:

NEW YORK, NY – Just hours after NYPD warned officers about an online call for “cop killing”, we’re receiving words that the 88th precinct is being overrun.

Sources on the ground tell Law Enforcement Today that a Level 3 mobilization has been called – which will result in a massive police presence.

James Gagliano is also reporting the same.

https://twitter.com/JamesAGagliano/status/1266545935905173504

 

We’re also hearing reports that now shots have been fired – and that a protestor might have been shot by another rioter.  

Sources tell Law Enforcement Today that what started as peaceful protests – despite orders this month from Mayor De Blasio specifically against such protests – quickly started turning violent.

We’ve received word that officers have been being pelted with rocks and other objects and that NYPD vehicles are being vandalized as well.

Social media quickly erupted with people attacking police officers for trying to quell the violence.

https://twitter.com/KarlMunstedt/status/1266541705496592384

The crowds are quickly growing in size, as is the police presence.

 

An officer safety alert has been issued with the New York Police Department following an online call for “cop killing.”

The NYPD distributed an internal memo to members saying that Khaalid Anderson, 26 years old of Brooklyn, issued a threat on social media.

The threat said:

“Cop killings are gonna become a thing and I’m here for it.

“Sucks to say but I feel like it’s gotta come to this in order for things to change. Please humble me if you got a different answer but I feel like somebody gotta die. I don’t see another way unless we pull up on some Black Panther shit. But even then, I feel like somebody still gotta get popped prematurely to let them know “accidents” happen and shit ain’t a game no mo. We gotta go to war bout respect.”

 

The threat of course was made in response to the officer-involved death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. 

While there is no probable cause for an arrest after the social media posting, police were told to “exercise caution and to remain vigilant.”

Fox News reported:

“An NYPD public information officers had no comment on the alert, which was obtained by Shawn Cohen, a journalist who worked the NYPD beat for the New York Post. Cohen tweeted a screenshot of the alert Friday morning.”

On Facebook, Anderson is boasting of his comments, saying:

“I made a tweet about cop killings on Twitter and the laws been on my ass every since lol
Mfs been pulling up to the crib looking for my ass for 2 days now, mistaking my roommates for me and looking goofy.

“It’s people with real issues out here and mfs pulling up on me about tweets lol smh. Ima say be careful with what y’all say and do because they wack ass gon try to find ya lol and if ya mouth too slick slick, who knows what may happen to ya. I ain’t answering no doors lol”

 

According to his Facebook page, another name that Anderson goes by is Norman Basquiat.

The threatening statements continued on Twitter:

Despite his comments calling for police killings, he appeared to backpedal once the alert was issued.

Anderson also indicated on Twitter Friday morning that he wants to “light some shit up.”

https://twitter.com/khaalidanderson/status/1266373130110427153

Anderson mentioned killing or cops getting “popped” more than once on his social media pages.

He said that the out of control violent riots which left the city of Minneapolis in burned shambles were “progress.”

Officers of NYPD, and everywhere really, please keep your head on a swivel today and every day. 

NEW YORK, NY- Remember when just weeks ago, Mayor de Blasio threatened police action on the Jewish community for having funerals and gathering to pay respects to the fallen?

Where is he right now as cops come under attack during growing protests?

Thursday evening, police arrested more than 40 demonstrators in the city after the violent protests from Minnesota spread to New York.

According to NYPD, multiple officers were hurt.

Among them was one who was struck in the head with a garbage can and another who was punched in the face.

Despite mandates to wear a mask in public and practice social distancing, other protestors spit at police and gathered in large groups.

A public spokesperson for NYPD said a protestor also tried to remove an officer’s gun from its holster.

“Peaceful protest is always the best way to protest,” the spokesperson urged.

FDNY confirmed to local media that four police officers were injured and transported to nearby hospitals.

They also said one woman was arrested for carrying a large knife.

As the day went on, more than five protestors were arrested near Union Square Park for throwing bottles at officers.

https://twitter.com/Breaking911/status/1266133660467675137

By 9:30 p.m., more than 40 people had been arrested.

https://twitter.com/camerongrey/status/1266183623624933377

Among them were the person who threw a garbage can at an officer’s head and someone else who is accused of punching a female NYPD inspector in the chest.

Videos all over social media showed protesters battling with police.

In some of the clips, the crowd could be heard chanting “Black lives matter” or “Hands up, don’t shoot.”

As the sun went down, the crowds grew throughout Manhattan.

You could see in one video an officer who was holding a video camera repeatedly tell protesters to “back up” as other officers made an arrest behind him… and the two were surrounded by a swarm of masked, young people surrounded them.

Dermot Shea, the city’s police commissioner, had condemned the Minnesota incident even before the protests in the city began.

“This is not acceptable anywhere,” he tweeted about Floyd’s death.

Want to make sure you never miss a story from Law Enforcement Today?  With so much “stuff” happening in the world on social media, it’s easy for things to get lost.  

Make sure you click “following” and then click “see first” so you don’t miss a thing!  (See image below.)  Thanks for being a part of the LET family!

Facebook Follow First

 

 

Share:
Related Posts