An NYPD sergeant was forced to turn over his weapons after he called a department head a ‘bully’…
When a veteran sergeant in the NYPD called out a department leader for giving him a bad review, he never expected to received such a hefty punishment.
But according to a report from the NY Daily News, Sgt. Harold Gates was forced to turn over his guns, go through a psychiatric evaluation and was even bumped to the night shift.
Reportedly calling his superior a “bully”.
The documents obtained by the Daily News painted the picture of what really happened between Sgt. Gates and Deputy Inspector Tania Kinsella.
“You’re the reason cops shoot themselves. You’re the lowest of the low,” Gates reportedly told Kinsella after she handed him down his lowest rating ever during an August review.
Gates had approached the Deputy Inspector at a Coney Island housing unit where the two worked in order to appeal the results of his review. Over the course of that altercation, Gates told Kinsella how upset he was.
Following the argument, Kinsella flagged Gates as ‘at risk’ for potentially self-harming, and promptly ordered him to visit a department psychiatrist in order to undergo a psychiatric evaluation. Additionally, he was forced to turn over his weapons, ID and shield as the admin cited his remarks as potential “suicidal ideation.”
Days later, Gates was cleared by the mental health professional. They noted that “there are no psychological restrictions prohibiting [him] from carrying firearms,” the report said.
Gates thought the whole thing was over. His guns were returned and he began working again. But just a week later, he was suddenly transferred to the graveyard shift, assigned to take over midnights in lower Manhattan.
The 42-year-old sergeant and union rep feels as though the change in assignment came as a slap in the face for his comments.
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Gates has been an officer with the department for the last 13 years, racking up a list of 120 arrests while on patrol and overseeing thousands more while serving as a supervisor. Additionally he serves as a union representative.
The NYPD backed Kinsella’s decision to refer Gates to a mental health counselor.
“When considering the fact patterns, in their entirety, the actions of Kinsella were well within the purview of her duties as a commanding officer and were appropriate,” the department stated in an email.
NYPD Chief of Housing James Secreto agreed that the confrontation was inappropriate and that Gates should have absolutely faced pushback.
“A sergeant cannot go off on the deputy inspector without repercussions. I don’t consider it a workplace dispute. We are a paramilitary organization,” he said.
NYPD sergeant sent for psych eval, briefly loses guns and gets bumped to midnight shift after accusing supervisor of trying to bully him, records show https://t.co/Cp3hWGG6aN
— Raymond E. Foster (@policeofficer) October 19, 2019
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But others criticized Kinsella’s move, saying the goal of the department should be providing positive reinforcement and support to their staff — not abusing power to punish someone over a personal vendetta.
“The idea of being a commander is to motivate in a positive manner production out of your subordinates,” said former NYPD Chief of Patrol Wilbur Chapman.
The NYPD has been rocked by an increased trend of officers taking their own lives. Last week, Sgt. Linhong Li became the 10th officer within the department to commit suicide this year. Investigators are looking into allegations that he might have been the victim of bullying inside his precinct.
The Sgt Harold Gates story gaining traction among the rank and file amid the ongoing suicide crisis in the NYPD. 10 active police officers have died by suicide this year and at least two retired officers. pic.twitter.com/8LKvj3fh53
— Graham Rayman (@graham_rayman) October 18, 2019
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