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Lawmakers Call On Bloomberg To Combat Police Corruption

In wake of series of allegations involving officers, a demand for an independent investigative commission.

Assemblyman Hakeem Jefferies, D-Fort Greene, called on Mayor Michael Bloomberg Thursday to form an investigative commission in the wake of a series of scandals involving the New York Police Department.

"We are deeply troubled and alarmed at the recent outbreak of corruption all across the city of New York that is staggering in its scope," Jeffries said.

State Sen. Eric Adams, Councilwoman Letitia James, Councilman Jumaane Williams, all D-Brooklyn, and civil rights attorney Norman Siegel joined the three-term Assemblyman in front of One Police Plaza in Lower Manhattan to demand the formation of an independent body with subpoena power to investigate the entire department.

"You can't have fulltime police officers moonlighting as criminals," said Adams, a former police officer in Fort Greene-Clinton Hill's 88th Precinct. "Something is not right in the police department and we need to get to the bottom of it."

In recent weeks, officers based in precincts throughout the city have been the subject of several serious corruption allegations ranging from gun running in Brooklyn, ticket fixing in The Bronx and a racially charged stop-and-frisk investigation in Staten Island

Jeffries, a leading proponent in Albany of ending police abuse of stop-and-frisk, characterized the string of charges against rank-and-file officers as indicative of a much larger problem.

"There is a culture of corruption that is festering like a cancer and it must be addressed," he said.

Lawmakers joined Siegel in calling for an investigation along the lines of the Knapp Commission, which was called into being in the 1970s in response to reports of systemic abuse of police power by whistleblower Frank Serpico.

However, at least one of the participants of today's news conference admitted that calling for a top-to-bottom investigation of a department largely responsible for historically low crime rates would be an uphill battle.

"People say, 'It was not as bad as it was then,'" said Williams, himself the subject of at last September's West Indian Day Parade. "But why do you want to wait when it's that bad to do something about it?"

Joe Gonzalez November 03, 2011 at 06:28 PM
All over the United States police officials are in fact elected to their posts by the citizens. It's time for these same cry baby politicians in above article and all across the City to pass a law in the City Council and/or in Albany to make the NYPD Police Commissioner's office an elected post. This might stop a lot of the NYPD crap because if the elected Police commissioner doesn't measure up s/he would be voted out of Office at the next election. Some of the cry baby politicans listed above voted for Bloomberg to get a third term as Mayor and also voted for Christine Quinn to be City Council Speaker despite her years of supporting NYPD' insanity. Go figure.
Kevin Thomson November 03, 2011 at 08:27 PM
Joe, None of the elected officials listed in this article supported a third Bloomberg term. In fact, Jeffries, James and Adams strongly opposed it. Jeffries was the prime sponsor and author of state legislation to legally deny Bloomberg a third term. Obviously, the bill didn’t pass (Republicans control the Senate), but it made it all the way to the floor of the Assembly. James wasn’t term limited, but still lent her voice to a very worthy cause. And as for Jumaane Williams… he wasn’t even in elected office during the third term firestorm! He didn’t assume office until 2010. Know your facts. Who’s crying now?
Joe Gonzalez November 04, 2011 at 01:12 PM
Let the public record show that I was slightly in error to the extent that I said "some of the cry baby politicans (above) voted for Bloomberg to have a third term" That was in error. Neither of the two cited City councilmembers cited above did vote for Bloomberg to have a third term. But both Williams and James committed an equally outrageous violation against the community's best interest & that concerns their January 6, 2010 vote to support Christine Quinn to be the City Council Speaker over Councilmember Charles Barron. Quinn's long and unrelenting support for NYPD misconduct renders her unfit for public office. Also I personally spoke to James, Williams, Jefferies & Adams each at least several times over the past few years & specifically asked each of them to submit legislation to make the NYPD Police Commissioner's post an elected Office. Each one of these persons specifically refused my request to my face. So I am clear they all have failed to represent the best interests of the community to the extent they refuse to really step up and MAKE NYPD POLICE COMMISIONER AN ELECTED OFFICE. Doing so would make the Police Commissioner directed accountable to the voters.
will galison March 16, 2012 at 01:01 AM
Senator Adams has no standing to complain about Police abuse.. He is complicit in the cover up of the murder of Sun Ming Sheu, a Queens resident who murder is being covered up by the NYPD. See the letter to Eric Adams, and Eric's flaccid pathetic response at: http://sunnysheu.blogspot.com/2011/07/letter-to-eric-adams-regarding-his.html Eric Adams is a small man in a very small suit to make him look bigger.

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