SPECIAL EDITION: ERIC GARNER: JUSTICE SERVED?

September 14, 2019 at 5:30 am

NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo, whose chokehold resulted in the death of Eric Garner, is now off the force. But, has justice truly been served? And what is the fallout of his firing? Tonight, we examine the politics, the police and the family at the center of a case that has divided the city.

Aired on September 13, 2019. 

Transcript Print

>> THE UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCE
OF MR. GARNER'S DEATH MUST HAVE
A CONSEQUENCE OF ITS OWN.
THEREFORE, I AGREE WITH THE
FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS.
IT IS CLEAR THAT DANIEL PANTALEO
CAN NO LONGER EFFECTIVELY SERVE
AS A NEW YORK POLICE OFFICER.
TONIGHT HAS JUSTICE BEEN SERVED
IN THE CASE OF ERIC GARNER?
LAST MONTH NYPD COMMISSIONER
ANNOUNCED HIS DECISION TO FIRE
DANIEL PANTALEO.
FOR FIVE YEARS THE CASE HAS BEEN
SOMETHING OF AN OPEN WOUND IN
NEW YORK CITY.
AND TO JUDGE FROM THE REACTION
THE COMMISSIONER'S DECISION TO
FIRE PANTALEO HAS DONE NOTHING
TO CHANGE THAT.
FOR THE GARNER FAMILY, THEY
BELIEVE THAT PANTALEO'S FIRING
SHOULD HAVE COME A LONG TIME AGO
AND THEY CONTINUE TO CALL FOR
THE OTHER OFFICERS INVOLVED IN
GARNER'S ARREST TO BE HELD
ACCOUNTABLE.
FOR MANY OFFICERS SERVING IN THE
NYPD, THE DECISION WAS SEEN AS A
MATTER OF POLITICAL EXPEDIENCY
AND NOT JUSTICE.
THEY BELIEVE THEIR COMMISSIONER
SENT A CLEAR MESSAGE THAT THE
CITY DOES NOT HAVE THEIR BACK.
IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE
ANNOUNCEMENT, PAT LYNCH DEMANDED
THAT COMMISSIONER O'NEIL AND
MAYOR DE BLASIO RESIGN OR BE
FIRED.
RECENT CRIME STATISTICS RELEASED
SUGGEST THAT POLICE HAVE SLOWED
DOWN SINCE THE FIRING.
WHERE DOES THAT LEAVE US?
HAS THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE
NYPD AND THE COMMUNITY IT SERVES
BE DAMAGED ONCE AGAIN AFTER
YEARS OF APPARENT PROGRESS?
WILL THE GARNER FAMILY SUCCEED
IN ITS CALL FOR MORE FIRINGS?
AND WHAT'S NEXT FOR COMMISSIONER
O'NEIL AND MAYOR DE BLASIO?
JOINING US NOW WITH ANSWERS TO
THOSE QUESTIONS ARE CITY COUNCIL
MEMBER DEBBIE ROSE WHO
REPRESENTS NORTH SHORE, ASSEMBLY
MEMBER MIKE O'REILLY WHO IS A
FORMER NYPD LIEUTENANT.
AND BILL RITTER, CO-ANCHOR OF
ABC 7'S EYEWITNESS NEWS WHOSE
COVERAGE INCLUDES RECENT
INTERVIEWSF.
THE ONE THING THAT MOST NEW
YORKERS WOULD AGREE WITH IS THAT
IT WAS A DEVASTATING TRAGEDY.
BILL, LET ME START WITH YOU.
SINCE THE DEATH OF ERIC GARNER,
CAN YOU TAKE US THROUGH THE
LEGAL AND POLITICAL PROCESSES
THA THAT GOT US TO THIS POINT,
THE COMMISSIONER'S FIRING OF
PANTALEO.
>> BASICALLY, I THINK YOU
WRAPPED IT UP PRETTY WELL THAT
BOTH SIDES VERSION OF IT.
I THINK MOST PEOPLE FEEL THE
TRUTH IS SOMEWHERE IN THE MIDDLE
ABOUT ALL OF THIS IN TERMS OF
THE REACTION.
IT SEEMS SO LONG AGO.
THERE WAS ALREADY A CITY
SETTLEMENT FOR THE LAWSUIT THAT
HAPPENED YEARS AGO.
I THINK THIS WAS A CASE THAT
EVERY CASE TURN A PROSECUTOR
INVOLVED FAILED TO DO ANYTHING.
AND I MEAN FAILED TO DO ANYTHING
FROM THE GARNER'S PERSPECTIVE.
THEY PASSED ON IT BASICALLY.
HE HAD A GRAND JURY.
THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT GOT
INVOLVED.
ERIC HOLDER AND THEY SAID NO
THERE IS NO CIVIL RIGHTS
VIOLATION OR WE WILL NOT PURSUE
THAT AND THEN DITTO UNDER THE
TRUMP ADMINISTRATION.
THOSE ARE THREE PROSECUTORS,
THESE ARE ARMS OF LAW
ENFORCEMENT THAT PASSED ON THIS
CASE.
AND YOU CAN DEBATE THAT ALL YOU
WANT.
FOR THE GARNER FAMILY THAT WAS
VERY FRUSTRATING.
I THOUGHT IT BALANCES A NEW YORK
POLICE DEPARTMENT WHICH IT WAS
THEIR OFFICERS WHO WERE INVOLVED
IN ALL OF THIS.
THERE WERE EMTs INVOLVED IN
THIS, TOO.
THEY STOOD THERE AND WATCHED AS
A YOUNG MAN DIED.
I THINK REALLY I'M NOT A LAWYER
SO I DON'T KNOW ABOUT THE LAW,
BUT ALL I KNOW IS FOR GOOD
CITIZENS TO NOT DO ANYTHING
WOULD BE TERRIBLE.
THE EMTs DIDN'T DO MUCH.
THEY GOT LIKE ONE-DAY SUSPENSION
OR SOMETHING.
I KNOW THE GARNER FAMILY IS
PUSHING FOR ACTION AGAINST SOME
OF THE OTHER OFFICERS INVOLVED.
I THINK BASED ON WHAT THIS CASE
IS ABOUT AND HOW LONG IT TOOK TO
GET A PANTALEO DECISION, I THINK
THAT'S A LONG CAMPAIGN AND
STRATEGY.
I THINK THE BOTTOM LINE IS AT
EVERY TURN LOCAL DISTRICT
ATTORNEY AND TWO FEDERAL CIVIL
RIGHT INVESTIGATIONS FAILED TO
COME UP WITH ANY CHARGES AGAINST
PANTALEO.
AND THEN IT WENT TO THE INTERNAL
DISCIPLINARY COMMISSION AND
HEARING AGAINST PANTALEO.
IT TOOK A LONG TIME.
FINALLY, A DEPUTY COMMISSIONER
UNDER THE POLICE DEPARTMENT
UMBRELLA CAME OUT WITH HER
REPORT AND GAVE IT TO JIMMY
O'NEIL.
HE LOOKED AT IT.
I DON'T THINK IF YOU BELIEVE ALL
OF THE SOURCES AND YOU BELIEVE
O'NEIL, HE DIDN'T REALLY TALK TO
A LOT OF PEOPLE ABOUT THIS.
HE GOT ADVICE ABOUT THE GENERAL
STATE OF THINGS AND THEN HE MADE
WHAT HE SAYS WAS A WRENCHING
DECISION.
HE SAID -- IF HE WERE STILL A
COP, HEED BE PISSED OFF AT JIMMY
O'NEIL FOR MAKING THE DECISION.
HE HAD TO LOOK AT THE OVERALL
PATTERN.
ONE MORE THING BEFORE WE GET
INTO THE DISCUSSION.
THINGS HAVE CHANGED IN NEW YORK
CITY IN THE FIVE YEARS SINCE
ERIC GARNER'S DEATH IN JULY OF
2014.
THERE WERE COPS ASSASSINATED BY
A GUY WHO SAID THIS IS FOR ERIC
GARNER AS THEY SAT IN THEIR CAR,
JUST BRUTALLY ASSASSINATED.
I THINK THINGS HAVE CHANGED.
CRIME IS DOWN.
THEY STOPPED STOP AND FRISK.
ALL THE POLICE BRUTALITY
PROTESTS THAT WE HAD IN THIS
COUNTRY IN 2014 AND 2015, THEY
SEEM A LONG TIME AGO.
THINGS HAVE NOT BECOME
IDEAALISTIC AND PERFECT.
THINGS HAVE CHANGED IN THE CITY,
I BELIEVE.
>> THE COMMISSIONER MAKES THIS
GUT WRENCHING DECISION.
AND PAT LYNCH, THE PRESIDENT OF
THE LARGEST POLICE UNION IN THE
CITY SAYS THIS.
FOR YEARS MAYOR DE BLASIO HAS
DEMONIZED POLICE OFFICERS AND
UNDERMINED OUR EFFORTS TO
PROTECT OUR CITY.
FOR YEARS COMMISSIONER O'NEIL
HAS ACQUIESCED TO THE MAYOR AND
HIS ANTI'COP ALLIES.
EITHER CAN HELP REGAIN TRUST OR
CONFIDENCE OF NEW YORK CITY
POLICE OFFICERS.
THEY MUST RESIGN OR BE FIRED.
ASIDE FROM THAT, DO YOU AGREE
WITH PAT LYNCH?
>> I'M NOT GOING TO SAY THAT THE
MAYOR SHOULD BE FIRED OR THE
POLICE COMMISSIONER SHOULD BE
FIRED.
I WILL SAY THAT I DISAGREE WITH
THE DECISION THAT WAS MADE.
AND I WANT TO MAKE A POINT OF
WHY I COME TO THAT CONCLUSION
GIVEN MY YEARS OF EXPERIENCE AS
AN NYPD POLICE OFFICER, SERGEANT
AND LIEUTENANT.
BILL MENTIONED WHEN HE OPENED
HIS STATEMENT THAT THREE LAYERS
OF LAW ENFORCEMENT FAILED.
NOW, LET'S BE CLEAR THAT THEY
DIDN'T FAIL.
THEY LOOKED AT THE FACTS AND THE
EVIDENCE BASED ON EVERYTHING
THAT HAPPENED THAT DAY.
AND THE CONCLUSION WAS THAT THE
FACTS AND EVIDENCE DIDN'T
SUPPORT CHARGES.
NOW, THE REASON THAT IS BECAUSE
WHEN WE LOOK AT THE VIDEO --
WHAT HAPPENED TO MR. GARNER WAS
VERY TROUBLING.
IT WAS HEARTBREAKING.
BUT LET'S BE CLEAR, OFFICER
PANTALEO DIDN'T GO OUT THAT DAY
WITH INTENTION TO KILL ANYONE.
WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE VIDEO AND
FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES IT WAS
20 SECONDS FROM THE MOMENT THEY
INTERACTED WHERE OFFICER
PANTALEO PUT HIS HANDS ON MR.
GARNER UNTIL THE TIME THAT HE
WAS ON THE GROUND AND HE REMOVED
HIS GRASP.
DURING THAT FIRST INTERACTION,
MR. GARNER FLAILS HIS ARMS.
THEY GO BACKWARDS.
OFFICER PANTALEO AND MR. GARNER
HIT THAT PANE GLASS WINDOW
BEHIND HIM.
AT THAT MOMENT, OFFICER
PANTALEO'S ARM IS AT MR.
GARNER'S CHEST.
WHEN THEY GO BACK AND HIT THE
WINDOW, THAT'S WHEN HIS ARM GOES
UP TO THE NECK REGION OF MR.
GARNER.
SO FOR ME, WATCHING THAT BASED
ON MY EXPERIENCE, AT THAT
MOMENT, THAT'S WHY THAT HOLD WAS
TAKING PLACE.
AS THEY HIT THE FLOOR, NOW, YOU
SEE THAT HE'S REMOVING HIS ARM.
THE POINT THAT I'M TRYING TO
MAKE IS DURING POLICE
COMMISSIONER O'NEIL'S STATEMENT
OF WHY HE IS TERMINATING OFFICER
PANTALEO, HE STATES THAT THE
TRIAL JUDGE IN THE NYPD OFFICE
SAID OFFICER PANTALEO SHOULD
HAVE READJUSTED HIS GRIP.
THREE SECONDS.
WHEN YOU ARE INVOLVED IN A
STRUGGLE ON THE STREET, AND YOU
ARE TRYING TO PLACE SOMEBODY
UNDER ARREST, IT IS EASY TO
MONDAY MORNING QUARTERBACK AFTER
YOU ARE WATCHING IT.
>> WE'LL GET INTO THAT IN A
MOMENT.
I WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU.
YOU THINK THAT THE FIRING OF
OFFICER PANTALEO SHOULD HAVE
HAPPENED A LONG TIME AGO.
HOW DO YOU RESPOND?
>> THIS IS FIVE YEARS TOO LONG.
IT TOOK FIVE YEARS BEFORE
ANYBODY DECIDED TO ADDRESS THE
ISSUE AT HAND.
THE ISSUE WAS NOT THAT THE
OFFICER WENT OUT TO DELIBERATELY
MURDER ERIC GARNER THAT DAY.
THE ISSUE WAS THAT HE USED
EXCESSIVE FORCE.
MR. GARNER WAS UNARMED AND THE
FACT IS THAT HE WOUND UP USING
AN ILLEGAL CHOKE HOLD.
AND SO HE IS CHARGED WITH
USING -- WITH A VIOLATION OF THE
PATROL GUIDE BOOK.
AND SO --
>> IT'S BANNED.
>> IT'S ABSOLUTELY BANNED.
THERE IS NO AREA WHERE IT'S EVER
PERMISSIBLE.
OFFICERS HAVE BEEN TRAINED AND
THEY KNOW HOW TO RESPOND IN AN
INSTANT WITHOUT USING THE CHOKE
HOLD.
SO THIS IS AN EGREGIOUS USE OF
FORCE THAT WASN'T NECESSARY.
MR. GARNER WAS AN UNARMED
PERSON.
>> HE WAS SAYING HE COULDN'T
BREATHE.
>> WHO SAID -- AND TO
ASSEMBLYMAN RILEY'S POINT ABOUT
WHEN HE FELL BACK ON THE PLATE
GLASS WINDOW, THE VIDEO CLEARLY
SHOWS THEM ON THE GROUND AND
OFFICER PANTALEO STILL HAS HIS
>> IS THERE EVER A MOMENT -- WE
UNDERSTAND YOU LAID OUT THE CASE
VERY WELL THAT OFFICERS ARE IN A
DANGEROUS AND STRESSFUL
SITUATION TO HAVE TO MAKE SPUR
OF THE MOMENT DECISIONS.
IS THERE ANY MOMENT WHEN AN
OFFICER MAKES ONE OF THOSE
DECISIONS WRONGLY THAT HE OR SHE
CAN BE CRITICIZED OR PUNISHED IN
YOUR ESTIMATION?
>> THAT'S A GREAT POINT.
I WANT TO GIVE YOU AN EXAMPLE OF
WHY THE NYPD PATROL GUIDE IS
JUST THAT, A GUIDE.
IT DOESN'T ALWAYS CONFORM TO
WHAT HAPPENS ON THE STREET.
LET'S SAY THAT THERE IS -- IN
THE GUIDE IT PROHIBITS OFFICERS
FROM SHOOTING AT A MOVING
VEHICLE.
LET'S SAY YOU'RE STANDING ON THE
CORNER OF WEST 50th STREET AND
8th AVENUE AND A PERSON IS
LOOKING TO STRIKE YOU AND KILL
YOU WITH NO OTHER FORCE THAN THE
CAR, I'M THE POLICE OFFICER ON
FOOT ON WEST 50th STREET AND 8th
AVENUE, WOULD YOU WANT ME TO
SHOOT AT THAT CAR TO STOP THEM
FROM HITTING YOU?
YOU PROBABLY WOULD.
BUT I WOULD BE VIOLATING THE
PATROL GUIDE.
THERE ARE INSTANCES WHERE
UNFORTUNATELY THE PATROL GUIDE
DOES NOT CONFORM.
>> ARE THERE MOMENTS WHEN FOR
EXAMPLE IN THIS CASE AN OFFICER
UNDER VERY DIRE CIRCUMSTANCES
AND SITUATIONS MADE THE WRONG
DECISION AND YOU NEED TO PUNISH
HIM?
>> THERE IS A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN
THE MISTAKE OF THE MIND AND THE
MISTAKE OF THE HEART.
THE HEART IS IN THE RIGHT PLACE.
HE WAS TRYING TO MAKE AN ARREST.
FACTORS HAPPEN.
OTHER FACTORS OUTSIDE THE
OFFICER'S CONTROL.
THAT'S THE POINT HERE.
THAT'S WHY THE LEGAL SYSTEM WAS
NOT PROSECUTING BECAUSE THERE
ARE MOMENTS IN TIME WHEN ACTIONS
ARE TAKEN AND UNDER THE LAW,
THEY ARE NOT ILLEGAL.
>> YOU WANTED TO RESPOND TO
THAT?
>> I JUST WANTED TO SAY THAT
ASSEMBLYMAN RILEY USES AN
EXAMPLE WHERE THERE IS DEADLY
FORCE BEING USED.
ERIC GARNER WAS NOT BEING
FORCEFUL.
IN FACT, HE WAS SAYING --
BECAUSE THERE WAS A HISTORY OF
HARASSMENT.
HE WAS NOT SELLING CIGARETTES.
HE HAD JUST BROKE UP A FIGHT
THAT HAD TAKEN PLACE IN THE
PARK.
SO HE FELT THAT THEY WERE
APPROACHING HIM, THEY WERE
HARASSING HIM ONCE AGAIN.
HE WAS NOT RESISTING.
HE WAS SAYING LIKE NOT TODAY.
IT'S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.
>> COUNCIL MEMBER, YOU KNOW
THERE HAS BEEN A LOT OF TALK
ABOUT HOW IN THE LAST FIVE YEARS
THE CITY HAS BEEN EXPERIENCING
SOMETHING THAT COULD BE CALLED
THE GARNER EFFECT, THAT BECAUSE
OF THE GARNER CASE AND WHAT
OFFICER PANTALEO HAD GONE
THROUGH NYPD OFFICERS ARE
HOLDING BACK.
THEY'RE SAYING THEY'RE BEING
REACTIVE RATHER THAN PROACTIVE,
ALLOWING LOW LEVEL CRIMES AND
PERHAPS HIGHER LEVEL CRIMES TO
GO BY BECAUSE THEY'RE AFRAID TO
STEP IN IN FEAR THAT SOMETHING
WOULD GO AWRY AND THAT THEIR
BOSSES WOULD NOT SUPPORT THEM.
ARE THEY RIGHT TO FEAR THAT?
>> THIS CASE, THE WHOLE GARNER
INCIDENT IS ABOUT
ACCOUNTABILITY.
AND IT PERPLEXES ME HOW THE NYPD
CANNOT HOLD AN OFFICER
ACCOUNTABLE, AN OFFICER WHO BY
THE WAY HAS A HISTORY OF BAD
ACTIONS.
HE'S BEEN CITED FOUR TIMES BY
CCRB, SUBSTANTIATED FOR ACTIONS
THAT ARE AGAINST THE PATROL
GUIDE BOOK.
THIS IS ABOUT ACCOUNTABILITY.
WHEN DO YOU HAVE TO BE
ACCOUNTABLE?
AND WHERE IS THE CREDIBILITY IN
THE POLICE DEPARTMENT THAT IS
SUPPOSED TO SERVE AND PROTECT
ALL OF US?
>> ASSEMBLY MEMBER, RILEY, DO
YOU BELIEVE -- SOME PEOPLE SAY
THAT THE VIDEOS THAT WE SAW OF
THE INCIDENTS IN THE SUMMER OF
POLICE MEN ALLOWING THEMSELVES
TO BE DOUSED WITH WATER AND
PELTED WITH WATER, BUCKETS, THAT
THAT IS A DIRECT CONSEQUENCE OF
THE SO-CALLED GARNER EFFECT, OF
COPS BEING AFRAID OF BEING
PROACTIVE OR STOPPING THINGS AND
ALLOWING THEMSELVES -- THE LACK
OF RESPECT OF COPS, ALL OF THIS
SOMEHOW RELATED.
DO YOU BELIEVE THAT'S THE CASE?
>> I ABSOLUTELY DO.
I THINK THE RHETORIC THAT CAME
OUT OF ALBANY AND CITY HALL CAME
OUT OF A LOT OF POLITICIANS AND
ADD TODAY WHAT WE'RE SEEING
TODAY.
THAT'S WHY I PARTNERED WITH MY
COLLEAGUE IN PUTTING FORWARD
LEGISLATION THAT WOULD MAKE IT A
CLASS E FELONY FOR ANYBODY THAT
WOULD THROW LIQUID ON AN OFFICER
IN THE PERFORMANCE OF THEIR
DUTY.
WHILE YOU ARE ON PATROL, THAT IS
PERFORMING YOUR DUTY.
YOU MAY THINK IT'S NOT A BIG
DEAL.
THINK ABOUT THIS.
THEY ARE WEARING A BULLET
RESISTANT VEST.
THEY HAVE A RADIO.
THAT BULLET RESISTANT VEST LOSES
ITS QUALITY AND THE ABILITY TO
STOP A PROJECTILE WHEN IT GETS
SOAKING WET.
THIS IS A REAL CONCERN TO
OFFICER SAFETY, BUT ALSO THE
PUBLIC SAFETY.
WHAT IF THE PUBLIC NEEDED HELP
AND YOU CAN'T RADIO FOR
ASSISTANCE BECAUSE YOUR RADIO IS
DAMAGED?
THE PROBLEM IS SOME OF THE
MESSAGING THAT'S BEEN PUT
FORWARD HAS EMBOLD OENNED PEOPLE
TO DO THINGS LIKE THAT.
THAT'S A REAL TROUBLING PATHWAY
WE'RE GOING DOWN.
>> I'M NOT SURE HOW MUCH TIME WE
HAVE LEFT.
BILL, IN 2013, MAYOR DE BLASIO
RAN ON A PLATFORM OF REPAIRING
THE RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN THE
POLICE AND COMMUNITIES OF COLOR.
YOU TOUCHED ON THIS EARLIER.
WHAT EFFECT HAS THE GARNER CASE
HAD ON THIS PROCESS?
>> I THINK AT THE BEGINNING IT
HAD A HUGE EFFECT.
I THINK NOW, THOUGH, AT THE -- I
DON'T WANT TO, YOU KNOW, BE
DISAGREEING WITH BOTH OF OUR
GUESTS TODAY.
I THINK THAT THE RELATIONSHIP
BETWEEN THE COMMUNITY AND THE
POLICE DEPARTMENT IS AT A BETTER
PLACE NOW THAN FIVE YEARS AGO.
I DON'T THINK THERE IS QUESTION
ABOUT THAT.
I THINK UNDER THIS
ADMINISTRATION THEY BEEFED UP
THEIR COMMUNITY POLICING WHICH
IS A STRATEGY THAT DOES PAY OFF.
CRIME IS LOWER.
THERE ARE PROBLEMS WITH
SHOOTINGS AND GUNS AND MUCH OF
THAT IS GANG RELATED.
I DON'T HAVE AN ANSWER TO THAT.
THEY'RE TRYING.
BUT IN GENERAL, THIS IS A SAFER
CITY.
I THINK THAT THE RELATIONSHIP
BETWEEN THE COMMUNITY OF PEOPLE
AND THE NYPD IN MANY WAYS IS
BETTER THAN IT HAS BEEN IN A
LONG TIME.
THIS CASE IS SORT OF GURGLING UP
AGAIN WITH SOME ARGUMENTS MADE
BACK THEN.
I THINK IT WOULD HAVE BEEN
TOUGHER.
I SUSPECT THAT THIS WAS IN THE
COMMISSIONER'S THINKING.
IF THE COMMISSIONER HAD NOT
FIRED DANIEL PANTALEO, WHAT
WOULD HAVE BEEN THE REACTION
THEN?
I THINK THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN A
DIFFERENT STORY.
I KNOW THE GARNER FAMILY IS
STILL UPSET.
I THINK THIS CASE IS PRETTY MUCH
OVER IN TERMS OF LEGAL
PERSPECTIVE.
I THINK IT IS TIME TO GET BACK
INTO BRINGING THE COMMUNITY
TOGETHER AS MUCH AS WE CAN.
I'M NOT SURE WHAT PAT LYNCH -- I
KNOW HE IS CERTAINLY A
PASSIONATE GUY.
I DON'T KNOW WHAT HIS STRATEGY
IS.
I DON'T THINK THE POLICE
DEPARTMENT REALLY UNDERSTANDS
THE STRATEGY.
I AM NOT SURE I REALLY
UNDERSTAND WHAT THE END GAME AND
STRATEGY REALLY IS.
I THINK THAT THE FIGURES THAT
YOU CITED ABOUT FEWER ARRESTS
AND FEWER STOPS, I THINK THAT'S
GOING TO GO AWAY.
I THINK MOST COPS WANT TO DO
THEIR JOB AND PROTECT PEOPLE.
I THINK THEY GET A LOT OUT OF
IT.
I THINK FOR THE MOST PART, THERE
ARE THE FRINGE ELEMENTS ON BOTH
SIDES AND NEW YORKERS WANT THEIR
POLICE DEPARTMENT TO DO A GOOD
JOB AND PROTECT THEM AND THEY
WANT TO RESPECT THEM.
I DO BELIEVE IT.
>> ABSOLUTELY.
IN THE FIVE YEARS THAT WE WERE
GOING THROUGH THIS, THERE WAS
NOT ONE VIOLENT INCIDENT IN
STATEN ISLAND WHERE THE HOME OF
WHERE THIS WHOLE THING STARTED.
WE HAD PROTESTS.
WE HAD EVERYTHING.
THERE WAS NOT ANY VIOLENCE.
I WAS IN OFFICE THE DAY THAT
ERIC GARNER WAS KILLED AND THE
POLICE COMMISSIONER CAME TO MY
OFFICE, AND WE TALKED ABOUT HOW
ARE WE GOING TO HANDLE IT AND
WHAT WE WERE GOING TO DO GOING
FORWARD.
HE MADE ME A PROMISE THEN THAT
HE WAS GOING TO REVAMP THE
TRAINING.
AND HE DID THAT.
THEY TRAINED.
THEY DID EXTENSIVE TRAINING.
THEY CHANGED SOME OF THE
DYNAMICS OF THE TRAINING
PROTOCOLS.
AND WE SEE THAT WE NOW HAVE
COMMUNITY POLICING.
AND WE HAVE NCOs.
IF YOU GO WITHIN A COMMUNITY IN
MY DISTRICT THAT HAS NCOs, THEY
ARE VERY PLEASED WITH THE
PARTNERSHIP.
THERE IS A GIVE AND TAKE.
THERE IS RESPECT.
SO IT'S WORKING.
COMMUNITY POLICING IS WORKING.
AND IT IS A BETTER COMMUNITY IN
TERMS OF THE RELATIONSHIP
SINCE --
>> DO YOU AGREE WITH THAT?
>> I DO.
I DO.
I WILL TELL YOU THAT I DO --
BILL MENTIONED EARLIER ABOUT
STOP QUESTION AND FRISK.
WHEN WE USED TO HAVE TO DO STOP,
A CARBON COPY WHERE YOU HAD TO
WRITE OUT AND GIVE SPECIFIC
REASONS WHY YOU STOPPED THE
INDIVIDUAL.
NOW, THEY MOVED TO A CHECK BOX
FORM.
MY ISSUE WITH THAT WAS IT BECAME
INSTEAD OF THE TOOL FOR PUBLIC
SAFETY AND OFFICER SAFETY, IT
BECAME A MEASURE OF POLICE
OFFICER ACTIVITY.
AND THAT'S WHERE WE WENT DOWN
THE WRONG PATH.
SO I GIVE THE MAYOR CREDIT FOR
ADDRESSING THAT.
THAT HAS LED TO BETTER
COOPERATION WITH THE COMMUNITY,
BETTER RELATIONS.
I ALSO WANT TO NOTE THAT THE NCO
PROGRAM IS GREAT.
LET'S REMEMBER, IT'S BASED IN
THE OLD CPOP METHOD.
>> IT WAS COMMUNITY POLICING.
WHEN I CAME ON THERE WAS A COP
ON THE BEAT AND AN OFFICER THAT
WAS AN NCO.
WE WENT BACK TO BASICS.
THINK ABOUT THAT.
WE'RE GOING BACK TO BASICS.
YOU TOUCHED ON BEFORE ABOUT PAT
LYNCH AND YOU MENTIONED THE
QUOTE WHERE HE SAID TO SLOW
DOWN.
I WILL PUT IT THIS WAY.
WHEN THEY TALK ABOUT SLOWING
DOWN, THEY'RE ACTUALLY POLICE
OFFICERS THE WAY THEY ARE
TALKING ABOUT GOING BY WHAT THE
PATROL GUIDE SAYS.
I WANT TO BE REALISTIC AND LET
YOU KNOW IF THE POLICE
DEPARTMENT ACTED ON EVERY
SITUATION, EVERY JOB THAT COMES
IN, 30,000 RADIO CALLS THAT COME
OVER THE AIR EVERY DAY THAT THEY
RESPOND TO AND WENT BY THE
PATROL GUIDE, I'M TELLING YOU
RIGHT NOW, THE CITY WOULD SHUT
DOWN, BECAUSE I'M TELLING YOU
THINGS WOULD NOT GET DONE THE
WAY WE SEE IT GETTING DONE
TODAY.
>> WE HAVE A MINUTE LEFT.
HOW OPTIMISTIC ARE YOU THAT WE
CAN, IN FACT, FIND THE SWEET
SPOT WHERE RANK AND FILE COPS
FEEL LIKE THEIR BOSSES HAVE
THEIR BACKS WHILE THE
COMMUNITIES OF COLOR FEEL THAT
THE COPS HAVE THEIR BACK.
>> I THINK IT'S SOMETHING THAT
CAN BE OBTAINED.
BUT WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE THAT
THERE IS ACCOUNTABILITY.
WHAT THE COMMUNITY IS ASKING FOR
IS ACCOUNTABILITY.
WHEN SOMETHING HAPPENS THAT IT
SHOULD BE DEALT WITH AND IT
SHOULD BE DEALT WITH YOU KNOW
RESPECTFULLY.
WE WANT THE SAME TYPE OF
POLICING THAT WE FIND IN ALL THE
COMMUNITIES.
AND SO I DO BELIEVE THAT IT'S
POSSIBLE.
WE'RE MOVING IN THAT DIRECTION.
BUT IT'S GOING TO HAVE TO BE
LIKE EVERYBODY IS GOING TO HAVE
TO ADMIT WHEN THEY HAVE SOME
SKIN IN THE GAME AND THEY HAVE
TO ACCEPT THAT THEY HAVE MADE A
MISTAKE.
I DON'T SEE ANY PROBLEM WITH
SOMEONE SAYING YOU'RE WRONG.
YOU SAY I'M A CITY COUNCIL
MEMBER.
WE HAVE SEVERAL CITY COUNCIL
MEMBERS WHO HAVE BEEN SANCTIONED
BECAUSE THEY HAVE NOT DID THEIR
JOBS AND ACTED INAPPROPRIATELY.
THAT'S WHAT WE ARE ASKING IS
THAT EVERYBODY BE ACCOUNTABLE
FOR THEIR ACTIONS.
>> I'M AFRAID WE WILL HAVE TO
END IT THERE.
THANK YOU SO MUCH ALL OF YOU FOR
JOIN USH.

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Rosalind P. Walter, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Janet Prindle Seidler, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

WNET

© WNET All Rights Reserved.

825 Eighth Avenue

New York, NY 10019