New York, NY – As rioters continue their brutal attacks on New York police, Mayor Bill de Blasio admonished members of the city’s police force and called for investigations into how police have handled confrontations with violent rioters.
Dozens of New York Police Department (NYPD) officers were injured and at least 47 NYPD vehicles were destroyed during riots on Friday and Saturday nights as police made more than 600 arrests, WCBS reported.
NYPD said 33 more officers were injured during a daytime melee of violent riots across the city.
On Monday night, an NYPD officer in the Bronx was attacked by a group of men as he was scuffling with another suspect on the ground, cell phone footage showed.
Members of the group repeatedly struck the officer with a large object, at which point the suspect he was fighting with managed to escape.
“F–k 12!” onlookers screamed.
The dazed officer scrambled back onto his feet and drew his weapon, but did not appear to point it at any specific threat, the New York Post reported.
Another video showed a rioter attacking an NYPD supervisor from behind and slamming a brick his head.
One of the NYPD officers at the scene immediately drew his gun and pointed it at the surrounding crowd.
During his press conference on Monday, de Blasio said that the officer’s actions were “absolutely unacceptable.”
“As your mayor, as someone who understands that the vast majority of protesters are there peacefully, and even those who do have that violent intent are still human beings,” the mayor opined.
“We have to always know it is not the place of an officer to pull a gun in the middle of a crowd knowing that there are peaceful protesters in that crowd,” he continued. “That is unacceptable. That is dangerous.”
He said there have been many recent “situations where police officers acted inappropriately,” and that each of those incidents “must be addressed.”
De Blasio also took issue with police vehicles driving through areas where rioters have blocked off the roadways.
“There is no situation where a police vehicle should drive into a crowd of protesters or New Yorkers of any kind,” he said. “It is dangerous. It is unacceptable.”
Despite the fact that rioters are looting and torching the city, de Blasio’s primary concern appears to be investigating the police.
He also indicated that he assumes officers are guilty even before investigations have taken place.
“There’s going to be – in each and every instance where an officer did something wrong – all of these matters are under review right now,” the mayor said. “They need to be speedy reviews. Discipline must be meted out in any case where it is merited. We need to show the people of this city that there’s one standard.”
De Blasio said that the “vast majority” of NYPD officers are doing well, but that there “are some who do not belong in this job.”
The mayor then singled out the officer who drew his weapon on the crowd of rioters after his supervisor had been bashed in the head with a brick.
He noted that the situation “admittedly looked chaotic,” but declared there was no reason for the officer to draw his gun.
“There will be an immediate, full investigation of that incident,” de Blasio said. “That officer should have his gun and badge taken away today.”
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo blasted de Blasio and the NYPD on Tuesday, alleging that neither of them has done their jobs with regards to curbing the mass riots, looting, arson and vandalism taking place throughout the city, FOX News reported.
Over 700 people were arrested on Monday night.
Cuomo said that de Blasio consistently “underestimates” the seriousness of the problem.
“You have 38,000 NYPD people. It is the largest police department in the United States of America,” the governor preached. “Use 38,000 people and protect property. Use the police, protect property and people. Look at the videos – it was a disgrace.”
Cuomo noted that he may have to “displace the mayor” and call in the National Guard to “take over,” but said he doesn’t “think we’re at that point” just yet, FOX News reported.
Cuomo also alleged that “the actions of the NYPD have exacerbated the anger” of the riotous mobs, WCBS reported.
But NYPD Chief Terence Monahan said that the governor has no idea what is truly happening on the front lines.
“The governor should have been out there seeing the bricks thrown on our heads, and I’ve been hit with bricks. The Molotov cocktails thrown at occupied police cars, the frantic radio transmission from a precinct commander who was trapped in his radio car with a mob pulling him out saying, ‘This might be my last transmission,’” Chief Monahan told WCBS.
“That’s what’s going through the head of a police officer as he’s trapped by one of these crowds,” the chief added. “It is not something that I think anyone wants to be put in that situation.”
Chief Monahan said that the city’s bail reform laws certainly aren’t helping police keep violent criminals off of the streets.
“Tell Andrew Cuomo to set up a law that when we catch a kid burglarizing a store and looting the business, that he’s not going to be back out on the street doing it again the next day,” he told FOX News. “That’s what bail reform has done to US city’s police department.”
De Blasio has put a citywide curfew into effect from 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. in an effort to curb the violence, and has repeatedly refused to request the assistance of the National Guard, FOX News reported.
“We do not need, nor do we think it is wise for the National Guard to be in New York City. Nor any armed forces,” he said during a press conference on Tuesday. “When outside armed forces go into communities no good comes of it.”
Instead, he implored local community leaders to call for peace in their neighborhoods.
“Community leaders, civic leaders, clergy, elected officials…all the people who actually represent communities. Step forward, create peace, own your community,” de Blasio said, according to FOX News. “Do not let outsiders attack your community, do not let a violent few attack your community. Stand up, I’ll be standing by you. I’ll be supporting you. The NYPD will be supporting you.”
The rioting comes after former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin was arrested on May 29 and charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in connection with George Floyd’s death.
Officers had responded to a call about a counterfeit $20 that Floyd had allegedly used to make a purchase at a deli.
Store employees pointed out the suspect to police and they arrested him.
The complaint used to charge Chauvin said Floyd actively resisted arrest and then fought being put in the back of a police car once he had been handcuffed.
Viral cell phone video showed then-Officer Chauvin and three other officers holding Floyd on the ground.
The video showed Officer Chauvin held his knee on Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes, during which time the suspect lost consciousness.
Chauvin remained on Floyd’s neck for almost three minutes after he was unresponsive.
Floyd was pronounced dead 90 minutes later at the hospital.
After three days of violent riots and looting that left Minneapolis and its sister city, St. Paul, in flames, the state investigative agency announced it making an arrest.
Chauvin was taken into custody by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension four days after the incident and held on a $500,000 bond, Minnesota Department of Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington announced, according to WCCO.
According to charging documents, the medical examiner’s preliminary report found no physical evidence that Floyd had suffered from asphyxiation or strangulation at the hands of the Minneapolis police.
The charging documents state, “The combined effects of Mr. Floyd being restrained by the police, his underlying health conditions and any potential intoxicants in his system likely contributed to his death.”