Sticks and stones may break your bones but words and videos have the NYPD crying foul.
There has been an uptick in videos in recent weeks of New York’s finest being berated by citizens and measures are being taken to curb the behavior, including implementing a new policy banning citizens from recording inside precincts, according to the New York Daily News.
Through a "privileged and confidential" memo dated August 15 and distributed to the precincts, the NYPD informed officers that they must now arrest citizens on criminal trespass charges for recording inside precincts if they refuse to stop when ordered to do so.
In other words, they now have official orders to arrest citizens for trying to hold them accountable inside tax-funded buildings.
But not surprising, they don't see it that way, playing the victim card instead.
President of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, Edward Mullins, blames a lack of leadership for the disrespectful videos that led up to the new policy. Officers are blaming the community.
Both sides are overlooking the history of abuse and discrimination cops are guilty of as the catalyst for the behavior.
In one video posted August 13, Sergeant Freddy Lopez is at the 28th Precinct station house when a man begins to verbally lay into him.
“Sergeant Lopez…he can suck a big fat f—— d—,” the man yells. “You’re supposed to be here to serve and protect, right? You’re not serving and protecting s—!”
Lopez asks the man if the video is going to be posted on Facebook and warns him that recording in the precinct is against the law. The warning has no effect on the man as he continues to let the sergeant have it.
“Shut the f— up b—- or I’ll put it in your f—— a–!” the man says. “I can record anywhere I want to,” he said. “You can’t tell me what not to do. It’s my phone and you don’t pay the bills. You don’t do s—!”
The man eventually walks out of the precinct untouched and video intact.
Prior to that, another video surfaced on August 8 showing four officers from the 40th Precinct heckled and cursed out by pissed off residents of a Bronx apartment building.
Officers were called to the home because of complaints that several teens were hanging out in the apartment with the tenant’s son.
According to the Daily News, “When the police arrived, the woman changed her mind and told authorities to leave. That’s when the officers were bombarded by the foul-mouthed tenants.”
Once again, police blamed community members for the lack of respect displayed in the video. One officer said, “It’s embarrassing. Now you see why crime is high in the 40th Precinct. They (the residents) have zero respect. Cops are so scared that they’re going to get in trouble with the department later. They don’t want to get jammed up.”
The police union boss echoed that sentiment.
Police accountability however, didn’t even make it into the topic of discussion.
Recorded at the Bushwick playground on Knickerbocker Ave. in Brooklyn, the clip shows a man placing a digital scale on the back of the cop car. He weighs the weed while the other man records the action.
“You, you want an eighth?” one man asks the other as a cigarette dangles out of his mouth.
The cop car is unoccupied at the time of the recording. No cops are seen in the video. In spite of that, the NYPD is crying foul saying disrespect for the “Blue” is palpable.
“This is an all time low,” said a high-ranking NYPD officer who saw the video. “The department has to step up now. They’re selling drugs on the back of a police car!”
David Jimenez said it was not disrespectful and recorded for laughs.
“Someone was killed in the park a few days prior and everyone was uptight about it, so I thought it would be a good way to break the ice,” he said.
As for the cop car, Jimenez believes it was a decoy car meant to deter illegal activity. Jimenez added that the recording does not show money changing hands so it was not a real deal. It wasn’t a criminal act. Possession at most.
In the most recent video posted Sunday, “a group of six uniformed officers is subjected to an NYPD blue-tirade hurled by a man who had fit the description of a suspect but turned out not to be their man,” reports the New York Post. The 20-year-old is “allowed” to go on a tirade against the cops for almost 5 minutes.
Christian Roman, of Staten Island, launched into his verbal assault on the cops around 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, after he was stopped and searched near Fifth Avenue and 53rd Street in Sunset Park because police said he matched the description of a suspect with a gun.
“S–k my d–k!” Roman shouts repeatedly at the cops. “Tell your daughter to come see me to s–k this d–k! F—-t!”
One of the officers eventually tries to reign in Roman’s antics threatening him with arrest.
“If you keep yelling obscenities like this, you’re going to get a summons for disorderly conduct,” Chan warned.
The veiled threats fall on deaf ears as Roman continues to lay into the cops for their continued harassment. Chan arrests Roman and he is given a summons for disorderly conduct at the 72nd Precinct station house and released.
“I got a little angry,” Roman told The Post on Sunday. “Every time I’ve been running into police, it’s been bad vibes. I don’t know what it is that I did wrong. I’ve been in trouble before. I’m a young kid, I make mistakes. I don’t got no felonies. I’m not no crazy person. I finished high school.”
In all of these videos, police continue to act shocked and dismayed at how the public is interacting with them. They fail to acknowledge how they contributed to this problem they now face within the communities they are tasked to protect and serve.
They refuse to take responsibility for their actions and ignore the consequences of them. The NYPD casts blame on ordinary “powerless” citizens while forgetting their history of heavy handed policing. And now the NYPD has called for a ban on recording inside the police stations.
Anyone videotaping inside these facilities will first be asked to stop recording, according to the memo, released on Wednesday and citing a recent update to the department’s patrol guide. If a person won’t stop recording, they will be asked to leave — and those who still refuse can be arrested, the document states.
That is New York’s finest’s response to the recent videos of perceived unprovoked “disrespect” by community members. You know what you signed up for. Stop bitchin’!