NEW YORK - Law enforcement officials are expressing deep concern over an alarming rise in assaults on uniformed NYPD officers and calling for urgent action to reverse the trend.
In an incident on Monday, an NYPD officer was brutally attacked by three suspects after he asked them to stop smoking at a Bronx subway station.
Just two days prior, Lieutenant Gypsy Pichardo faced a similar assault by two armed individuals when asking them to leave a train.
"Very disturbing," said NYPD Deputy Commissioner Tarik Sheppard about the apparent lack of respect for law enforcement. "Our police officers are the people we task with keeping people safe all across all the communities of New York City and for them to be assaulted is very problematic, and its something we're not going to tolerate in this city."
According to NYPD statistics, assaults on uniformed police officers on duty have surged by 21% this year compared to the same period last year. When compared to 2021, there was a 41% increase.
"We've seen an increase this year versus last year, and it's a huge increase. It's about 350 more police officers assaulted this year versus last year, but one is too many," Sheppard said.
Sheppard says that assaults on police officers in the subway system are hopping far too often, and that law enforcement is working to change that as quickly as possible.
The NYPD, along with police unions, are calling for stiffer penalties for suspects who attack police officers on duty and want the court system to send a message that it is a severe crime.