‘Pantaleo effect' sees misdemeanor arrests drop across NYC
NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - Since the firing of Officer Daniel Pantaleo 10 days ago, NYPD officials have confirmed that officers are making fewer arrests for minor crimes, the result of a directive from the police union just over a week ago saying that Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner James O'Neill do not have the backs of the rank-and-file officers.
The NYPD made 1,319 fewer arrests in a week compared to the same time period last year.
However, Chief of Department Terence Monahan points out that the arrest slowdown is for minor crimes where officers have the discretion of whether or not to make an arrest. Nevertheless, he admits that officers sending a message to Commissioner O'Neill and Mayor De Blasio about the handling of Pantaleo's firing.
"They're upset. I know they're upset, but they are doing their job as well as they've ever done, keeping people safe in this city. I have no fear that they would ever allow anyone to get hurt by not doing their job," Monahan said.
The slowdown comes at the same time as police union delegates voted unanimously that they have lost faith in the Mayor and Commissioner O'Neill and want them both out of office.
The last time the PBA called on a police commissioner to resign was 2004 with then-Commissioner Kelly after he took disciplinary action on an officer for shooting an unarmed black teen in BK. He didn't resign and served until 2013
Mayor De Blasio's office called the PBA vote another attempt by the union to divide the city, but retired NYPD Captain Peter Moreno says that police officers cannot work under a magnifying glass.
"It's a sad state of affairs when police officers, who willingly risk their lives now have to think twice about putting their hands on somebody because of the fact that they are under such scrutiny. They have to go home to their families, they have bills to pay, they cannot afford to make a mistake. Literally, they literally cannot afford it," Moreno said.