I Love the NYPD’s New Protest

While raging at those who protest against their far-too-frequent brutality and misconduct, the NYPD is engaging in a protest of their own by refusing to arrest anyone for minor offenses. Apparently, they think that’ll show the mayor and those of us who criticize them.

Because the New York City Police are in the middle of a slowdown. The New York Post is going so far as to call it a “virtual work stoppage.”

Furious at embattled mayor Bill de Blasio, and at what Police Benevolent Association chief Patrick Lynch calls a “hostile anti-police environment in the city,” the local officers are simply refusing to arrest or ticket people for minor offenses – such arrests have dropped off a staggering 94 percent, with overall arrests plunging 66 percent.

If you’re wondering exactly what that means, the Post is reporting that the protesting police have decided to make arrests “only when they have to.” (Let that sink in for a moment. Seriously, take 10 or 15 seconds).

Substantively that mostly means a steep drop-off in parking tickets, but also a major drop in tickets for quality-of-life offenses like carrying open containers of alcohol or public urination.

Hey, here’s an idea: How about the police everywhere only make arrested when they have to, when the actions taken by some individual are a genuine threat to the lives, property or liberty of another person? I like this protest. I hope it catches on. They’re being ridiculous and juvenile, but the result is great.

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  • lakitha tolbert

    That this might not be a bad thing was my first thought as well. Certainly the young Black men of NY must be breathing a sigh of relief at not being harassed everyday for walking around and looking like they might be thinking about maybe doing something later, maybe.

    If what they’re doing is meant to punish NY’ers, this tactic may end up having the opposite effect of proving they’re not quite as necessary as they make themselves out to be.

  • gog

    So, entirely by accident and without intent, the NYPD is doing community policing.

  • dingojack

    So about one in every three arrests are actually necessary*?

    So why were they making those other two in every three arrests, exactly?

    Dingo

    ———

    * according to professional law-enforcement experts — the NYPD

  • DonDueed

    Since only 1/3 of all arrests are necessary, it would seem that only 1/3 of police officers are necessary. That should be a major boon to the NYC budget.

  • http://artk.typepad.com ArtK

    I read an evidence-free post on FB that claimed that crime was “down 23%” at the same time as this protest. I really, really hate it when the supposed “good guys” engage in the same kind of stupid rhetoric that the right does.

    Some problems:

    Post hoc ergo propter hoc, assuming that the statistics are credible

    No information about how “crime” was being recorded

    Is there a seasonal fluctuation in “crime” that was accounted for?

    Is it possible that victims, knowing that the police won’t lift a finger, just stopped reporting minor crimes?

  • marcus

    NYPD= Bunch or whiny fucking babies.

    Waaaaaaaaah… but.. but the mayor’s not acknowledging our privilege! *sniffle*

    Poor dears, they might have to go out and get a real job.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    As a citizen, this prospect terrifies me. Just how many minorities are not being shaken down in the hope they’re carrying something illegal? How many mentally ill homeless aren’t being tased? How many black men selling loosies on the street are going unstrangled?

    We can’t tolerate this lawlessness and immorality! This isn’t Wall Street!

  • dingojack

    NYPD: To protect, serve and 2/3 of the time arrest unnecessarily…

    I wonder if that was Peel’s 10th Principle of Policing*.

    @@ Dingo

    —————-

    * see here

  • dingojack

    ArtK – When you see a crime does the conversation go like this:

    A: Oh a crime’s being committed, ring 911.

    B: The cops are on ‘go slow’ they’re not gonna arrest anyone, unless they think it’s necessary.

    A: Oh I forgot. OK if no one’s gonna get arrested then forget it…

    Really says something about your level of moral development.

    @@

    Dingo

  • karmacat

    in the immortal words of Rick Perry, “Oops.”

  • throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble

    What a bunch of overdramatic goons.

  • http://drx.typepad.com Dr X

    If you’re wondering exactly what that means, the Post is reporting that the protesting police have decided to make arrests “only when they have to.”

    I believe that’s how they’re supposed to do it, though that hasn’t been the policy in New York. Not even close.

  • Abdul Alhazred

    I can tell none of y’all are New York City types. This is a very effective job action.

    It puts serious pressure on the municipal government because it interferes with raising revenue.

    For example collecting cigarette taxes.

  • Who Cares

    Abdul might be a bit snarky about it but that is exactly what they are doing.

    No income from tickets/arrests/arraignments/summons.

  • dingojack

    Yes – that it interferes with local politian’s’ revenue raising is one issue — but that two out of three arrests by NY police officers are completely unnecessary (and mostly likely aimed against only one demographic segment of NY citizens) says a hell of a lot about the ‘culture’ of NY’s ‘finest’.

    Dingo

  • neonsequitur

    Lost revenue due to this “action” (I’d call it inaction, but okay…) should be offset by permanent layoffs of all those redundant police officers. In one go, they’ve created both a problem and an obvious solution. If their jobs aren’t necessary, then neither are their salaries.

  • D. C. Sessions

    The best thing about this “inaction” is that the non-actions are all happening out of sight of the citizens who have any influence with City Hall.

  • Synfandel

    New York City police officers hand out parking tickets?! Highly trained and heavily armed police officers issue parking tickets?! Might it be time to take parking tickets off of the police force’s list of responsibilities and give it to a bylaw enforcement department like…um…every other city?

  • http://drx.typepad.com Dr X

    Synfandel,

    I don’t know about other cities, but both NYC and Chicago have agents who do nothing but write parking tickets. In New York they’re called parking enforcement agents and in Chicago I believe they’re called enforcement aides. The regular POs in both cities also write parking tickets. A cop here (Chicago) once told me that other officers were mad at him because he writes a lot of parking tickets and the puts pressure on them to write more parking tickets. His rationale was that if he was right there and saw a violation and nothing else was demanding his time at the moment, it would be lazy to ignore the violation. Whatever you think about it, I’m just saying that to say that according to that particular CPD officer, the regular cops weren’t thrilled with writing parking tickets and his perception was that it was a matter of laziness.

  • dingojack

    Wow, how weird. Here, parking offenses aren’t under the purview of the Police Commissioner and his/her staff (they’re busy handling murders, armed robberies, rapes, the occasional siege in a café &etc), but rather they’re handled by the Sheriff and his/her staff…

    Dingo

  • http://www.themindisaterriblething.com shripathikamath

    This will work. In fact, if they had this policy when Garner was selling 50 cent cigarettes, they’d not have arrested him, he would not have struggled, they would have not have choked him to death and this mess avoided.

    Better late than never.

  • doublereed

    Well that just makes it sound like NYPD officer’s main job is shaking people down for cash.