Since the initial spark of what seems to be a new trend of drenching NYPD cops with water, more videos have emerged that have caught the attention of local and national leaders, creating a political firestorm.
So far, videos have surfaced online from at least four separate incidents showing groups of citizens dumping buckets of water on uniformed New York City police officers with none of the cops retaliating.
And now one NYPD organization, the Sergeants Benevolent Association, is claiming on Twitter that the buckets of water could be disguised as something more lethal, including "acid, bleach or other chemicals."
The SBA is also blaming Police Commissioner James O’Neill for the passiveness displayed by the cops, insisting "O'Kneel" step down before a cop ends up killed.
Even President Donald Trump chimed in, calling it a "total disgrace," directing his blame at New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. Videos from all four incidents are posted above.
The fourth incident of cops getting soaked was posted Thursday by the Instagram account @harlem4real and reposted on Twitter by @SBANYPD which identifies itself as “The Official Twitter page for the Sergeants Benevolent Association.” An older man and a young boy each dump a bucket of water over an officer’s head in a park and other kids continue to shoot the two cops with their water guns.
Earlier this week, Isaiah Scott, 23, and Chad Bowden, 28, were arrested and charged in connection to the incident in Harlem on Sunday.
A group of young men dumped water on everyone in sight, including an ice cream man still inside his truck. As one woman tried talking to the police from the outside while they sat in their patrol car, the men continued drenching her with water.
When the two cops stepped out of their car to make an arrest, the group of men still felt emboldened enough to douse them with water and even throw a bucket at one of their heads.
A video was released Wednesday of a group of people in the Bronx dumping buckets of water on two female New York City police officers. The video starts with the group running in the street toward the cops. After traffic clears, a few emboldened men douse the cops with water as the crowd laugh and cheer in the back.
Robert Perez, 24, was arrested Thursday night and charged with criminal mischief, harassment, criminal tampering and disorderly conduct after he was recognized in the video. Police also suspect Perez was involved in another similar incident.
A video posted on Monday and seen by thousands on Instagram, shows two officers in Brooklyn calmly walking away from a group of people that seem to be drenching the cops with water.
The woman recording the video can be heard saying, “They came over here to talk to them and they [the group of people] violating, they violating them.” A man can be seen running up behind one of the officers to dump a bucket of water over his head.
According to police, that man is a 28-year-old known gang member and was arrested Wednesday.
Those arrested could be charged with obstruction of governmental administration and harassment in the second degree, criminal tampering in the third degree, disorderly conduct and possibly second degree assault for spraying an on-duty officer with water.
From every video released so far, cops in each incident did not retaliate against the people dousing them with water, as instructed by Terence Monahan, chief of the NYPD.
"Any cop who thinks that that's all right, that they can walk away from something like that, maybe should reconsider whether or not this is the profession for them," he said at an NYPD awards ceremony held Tuesday. "We don't take that."
While a few boys playing with water guns in the summer may seem like an innocent act to some, the Sergeant Benevolent Association has taken the matter personally, tweeting that the buckets of water could contain lethal liquids and implying that Police Commissioner James O’Neill needed to step down before these incidents continued and potentially escalated.
NYPD has surrendered under O’KNEEL-ANOTHER WATER TOSSING VIDEO. No more MEMO’s- DEFEND YOURSELF before YOU get seriously injured or KILLED. These buckets can contain ACID, BLEACH or other CHEMICALS. Obtain exposure numbers. O’KNEEL MUST GO, take the CLOWNS with you! No CONFIDENCE
In regards to the video of the two women being sprayed with water in the Bronx, the Sergeants Benevolent Association tweeted, “O’Neill needs to go before we get another cop killed!”
O’Neill fired back at accusations that he has left his city in disarray Thursday.
“I was here in the 80s, I was here in the 90s. New York in 2019 is not that. We are so much better,” he told Fox News. “Has everybody always shown respect to police officers? Absolutely not...but we’ve made an arrest…”
Some officers including Chief Monahan have demanded “EVERY New Yorker” to “show respect for our cops” because “they deserve nothing less,” however O’Neill went on to say cops need to earn the deference.
“People have to respect the police, but police officers have to make good decisions too,” he said.
President Trump chimed into the recent incidents, tweeting, “What took place in NYC with water being tossed on NYPD officers was a total disgrace. It is time for @NYCMayor @BilldeBlasio to STAND UP for those who protect our lives and serve us all so well.”
However, the Sergeants Benevolent Association have accused O’Neill of “O’Kneeling” down to the New York City mayor, whom some say does not defend police enough when they receive criticism from Black Lives Matter advocates. Even former mayor Rudy Giuliani challenged De Blasio’s authority when he tweeted,
“This disrespect for the uniform in NYC is result of a Democrat-Progressive (Retrogressive)-Socialist Mayor,” he wrote. “This is what happens with knee-jerk disrespect for police. It will only get worse until these Left wing idiots are defeated.”
In 2014, hundreds of cops gathered outside a church where a fallen officer’s funeral was being held literally turned their backs on De Blasio as he gave a speech in honor of Officer Rafael Ramos who died in an ambush that year. Some felt he caused the officers death when De Blasio said many did not want the outcome of no officer being indicted in Eric Garner’s death.
Garner was known to sell untaxed cigarettes in Staten Island and died after pleading for air, shouting, “I can’t breathe,” while Officer Daniel Pantaleo placed him in a chokehold. The Staten Island grand jury decided against indicting the cop even after an uproar from the community erupted.
Just last week, the Department of Justice decided against charging NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo for the death of Garner.
It was the fifth anniversary of his death that also marked the end of the statute of limitations time period that gave Attorney General William Barr the option to press charges against Pantaleo and other officers involved in Garner’s death.
After five years worth of investigations, the Justice Department decided there was not enough evidence that established “beyond a reasonable doubt that officer Pantaleo acted willfully in violation of federal law,” Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Richard Donoghue announced last Tuesday.