The New York City Police Lieutenants union say street perpetrators enabled by city officials are ensnaring NYPD officers in legal battles by accusing officers of civilian complaints who initially answer quality of life complaint calls.
According to a June 25 letter sent to fellow union members, Lou Turco, President of Lieutenants Benevolent Association, explained how officers are called to respond to minor criminal offenses or quality of life complaints and are eventually entangled in civilian complaints and lawsuits.
Turco explains, After being dispatched for such calls officers will engage with the individual(s) perpetrating the offense(s).
“Perpetrator(s) is/are now emboldened to combat police officers as a result of a catastrophically created and imposed criminal reform agenda,” he writes, adding “A so-called “’innocent by-stander’ will film the interaction between the officer(s) and the offender(s) and immediately post the video on social media.”
Turco says that if the offense ultimately leads to an arrest, “the District Attorney’s office will likely decline to prosecute on all the charges; including resisting arrest.”
In addition, the law enforcement union president says the suspects will claim to have been injured if physical force was used during the arrest.
“The now exonerated perpetrator will then file a Civilian Complaint against the officer(s) and, in addition, will file a civil suit against the City and potentially the officers(s),” Turco writes.
He reminds his members that the officer(s) will not be indemnified by the city because there is an open Civilian
Complaint on the Officer(s) and the City of New York, will settle and pay the claimant without attempting to refute the claim.
Albany lawmakers, Turco points out, along with Governor Cuomo, passed and signed legislation last month to repeal a provision to make public law enforcement complaint files and civil lawsuit records public.
“All this for enforcing a minor criminal offense or quality of life complaint. The politicians show us no support, do not care for our safety but have no problem calling on us to fix the problems they have created,” Turco wrote.
“In their opinion, cops are simple and stupid and can be manipulated to do what they (the city and state politicians) want done, even after insulting us on a near-daily basis. They are using us as pawns in a game where we have been set up to fail.”
“Until Mayor de Blasio genuinely states and unequivocally commits to having our officers enforce fireworks infractions and the District Attorneys verbally commit to processing fireworks offenses, our members must employ the utmost discretion when taking action related to incidents involving illegal fireworks,” he stated.
The use of illegal fireworks in New York City has skyrocketed and calls to 311 and 911 about their use have mostly been ignored after Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the NYPD’s priorities would not include arresting those using illegal fireworks.
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams has told people to cease calling 911 about fireworks being set off in their neighborhoods and suggested that people should instead confront the individuals launching the fireworks in the neighborhoods themselves.
The NYPD has been in perpetual conflict with de Blasio since he first came into office in 2014 and the bitter relationship has taken its toll this year after municipalities across the country, under pressure by left-wing activists, forced city officials to cut or defund local police budgets.
Mayor Bill de Blasio along with the New York City Council intends to cut the NYPD budget. De Blasio offered to slash $240 million in the city’s law enforcement budget, but City Council Speaker Corey Johnson wants more and proposed over $1 billion in cuts to the police force.