Caught on camera: USPS employee attacked in police-defunded NYC by group of men

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NEW YORK CITY, NY – Police In New York City are searching for the five suspects said to be involved in an attack, partially captured on surveillance video, showing a USPS employee beaten by a group of men earlier in June in Brooklyn.

The victim, who tried fighting his attackers back, was said to have suffered broken facial bones and lacerations.

Police say the incident happened on June 28th after a group of men on dirt bikes blocked the 57-year-old mail carrier from crossing the street near McGuinness Boulevard and Nassau Avenue.

Video released from the incident shows a man on a dirt bike attacking the victim, with others then joining in on the assault.

One suspect was said to later have approached the victim from behind and punched him several times, before the group reportedly fled the scene.

No suspects have been identified as of this writing.

Police are urging the public to come forward if they have any information regarding the incident or the identities or whereabouts of the suspects. Anyone with details that can assist investigators can call NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS.

In other active investigations in New York City, police are also searching for the suspect caught on video punching a 72-year-old man in the head back in April. 

Police say the incident occurred on April 24th at approximately 1:10 p.m. within the area of Jerome Avenue and Featherbed Lane in the Bronx.

Authorities say some sort of verbal dispute played out between the victim and the suspect, which video shows the victim going back toward his vehicle.

While the victim’s head is turned away from the suspect, the suspect throws a punch – striking the victim in the head – and then the suspect re-enters his vehicle. 

Anyone with information that can assist investigators with identifying the suspect seen in the video is urged to call NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS.

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Recently, we at Law Enforcement Today shared a report about an at-large shooting suspect that injured a Marine in Times Square on June 27th, marking the second Times Square shooting injuring innocent bystanders in recent weeks. 

Here’s that previous report. 

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NEW YORK CITY, NY – An innocent bystander, who was said to be a Marine visiting with his family, was injured in a shooting that occurred at Times Square earlier in June. Police have released an image of the suspect believed to be the shooter.

The incident occurred at approximately 5:15 p.m. on June 27th within the vicinity of 47th Street and 7th Avenue, according to NYPD officials. Investigators believe that some sort of an altercation between two groups over selling CDs resulted in the shooting incident.

Footage from the shooting was captured by surveillance cameras in the area, showing a suspect aiming a firearm and shooting while people nearby ran for safety. 

An innocent bystander, identified as 21-year-old Samuel Poulin, was said to have been struck in his back by a ricocheting bullet, while Poulin was with his wife and sister-in-law outside of the Marriott Hotel on West 45th Street and Broadway.

Poulin was cited as being “alert and speaking with emergency workers,” according to the New York Post, by a witness who was on-scene at the time of the incident.

The victim was later transported to Bellevue Hospital, with a family member telling the New York Post on June 28th that he’s doing “fine.”

Citadel President Gen. Glenn M. Walters issued a statement regarding the Marine injured during the incident, which was as follows: 

“The Citadel family – in Charleston, South Carolina and around the world – is greatly saddened to learn about what happened to our Class of 2021 graduate, 2nd Lieutenant Samuel Poulin in Times Square on Sunday when he was hit by a bullet from a shooting event unrelated to him.

“We are encouraged that he is reported to be in stable condition [and] are sending our prayers and our love to his new wife and his family. 2nd Lieutenant Poulin holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics, was a President’s List cadet and exemplifies the kind of principled leader The Citadel strives to produce.”

The NYPD later released a video of the suspected Times Square shooter.

While the still image shows a black male in a very particular looking sweatshirt that is not seen in the subsequent video, the captured video depicts the suspected shooter adorning identical pants, a matching belt buckle and a backpack with an identical ribbed pattern on the straps.

This latest Times Square shooting happened mere blocks away from the shooting incident that occurred in May. 

According to reports, two women and a four-year-old girl were non-fatally shot in Times Square on May 8th, which launched a manhunt for the suspected shooter that had fled from the scene shortly after the gunfire. 

The alleged gunman, later identified as 31-year-old Farrakhan Muhammad, which authorities in near Jacksonville, Florida, located and arrested him four days following the shooting. 

Authorities were tipped off to Muhammad being the alleged shooter, as his brother told investigators that he was the intended target of the gunfire on May 8th. 

Muhammad was later charged with attempted murder and multiple counts of assault, reckless endangerment and criminal use of a firearm. 

According to a report from ABC News, New York City’s Times Square will now being seeing an increased police presence in response to these shooting incidents that have impacted innocent bystanders. 

In a press conference on June 28th, NYPD Police Chief Rodney Harrison made the following remarks: 

“It’s important that we put a lot more of a police presence over there.”

Mayor Bill de Blasio noted that with increased tourism, it’s imperative that those visiting the city feel safe, adding that – considering the alleged circumstances that led to the most recent shooting – there will be heavier enforcement regarding illegal vending. 

According to the New York City mayor, Times Square is going to be “very well patrolled” moving forward: 

“We’re going to flood the zone. We’re going to make sure Times Square is very well patrolled.”

Anyone with information on the incident, suspect’s identity or whereabouts are urged to call  NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).

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Meanwhile, while recent incidents such as the Times Square shooting has prompted even Mayor de Blasio to voice intentions to have more cops patrolling the streets, New York’s 14th District’s Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez continues to voice support for defunding police. 

Law Enforcement Today recently reported on the representative’s comments made during a Zoom meeting with a fellow congress member earlier in June. 

Here’s that previous report. 

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In a recent discussion over Zoom between Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Jamaal Bowman, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez professed a desire to still explore defunding of police departments while brushing off recent reports of elevating crime levels in major cities. 

With being just over a year since the expression and calls for “defund the police” began circulating in the mainstream, recent polling shows that the notion is hardly popular. 

In fact, a USA Today poll showed that roughly 18% of respondents supported the idea of defunding police. Even when breaking down the respondents to self-identified Democrats, only 34% supported defunding of police. 

However, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez brushed off recent reports of major cities experiencing a surge and crime – calling it “hysteria” – while speaking with Rep. Bowman over a Zoom meeting earlier in June and proclaimed that officials should still “look at these numbers” and determine how police can be defunded: 

“We are seeing these headlines about percentage increases. Now, I want to say that any amount of harm is unacceptable and too much.”

“But I also want to make sure that this hysteria, you know, that this doesn’t drive a hysteria and that we look at these numbers in context so that we can make responsible decisions about what to allocate in that context.”

One has to keep in mind, that reports show cities like Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Portland, Austin and New York City – all cities that have engaged in some sort of police defunding – have experienced higher levels of crimes. 

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez happens to be the 14th District Representative of New York City, a city that defunded police and, as of March 2021, saw an 11.8% increase in murder, 40.1% increase in shooting incidents and a 39% increase in shootings victims when compared to data the previous year. 

During the conversation between Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Bowman, who also supports the idea of “reallocation of resources” from the NYPD to social programs, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez voiced her allegiance to police defunding: 

“I agree with Representative Bowman, that I do believe that we need to reallocate resources away and that a big, you know, major causes of this — and by the way, I also think it’s important context because we hear on the news and media, they perpetuate this idea of crime wave, crime wave, crime wave, right?”

“And so this idea that a lot of us are panicked thinking that we are at some unprecedented level that we’ve never seen before.”

While Rep. Ocasio-Cortez is accurate in noting that cities like New York City aren’t experiencing an “unprecedented” level of crime “that we’ve never seen before” – particularly the crime levels of the 1990s were much higher than today’s – crime didn’t go down due to removing funds and resources from police. 

report written by Steven D. Levitt in 2004 actually pointed to four specific reasons why crime that was rampant in the 1990s began to fall. One of the reasons cited was “increases in the number of police”. 

None of the other three reasons came anywhere close to highlighting the funding of social programs/services. 

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