This Secret Police Recording Will Take Your Breath Away.
Police officers in New York City go through some of the most vigorous scenarios of all police departments in the country, comparable only to perhaps Los Angeles, and maybe Chicago. Big cities always offer larger amounts of people to manage, and therefore, always more crime. They also require tougher cops as a result. But as this secret police recording will show you, the people to be afraid of may very well be one in uniform.
Police departments in New York State are prohibited, under state law, from having any sort of quotas, or a quota system for arrests, summonses, and stops. There are still, however, quotas to be met. They are simply called something else: a “performance objective” or a “goal” to mask the fact that it is in place, and police officers are pressured heavily by their department heads to meet these quotas regularly, or face poor reports in paperwork that will damage their career as an officer, and potentially even get them killed in a retaliation from the department that will leave them alone in the most dangerous areas of the city.
Officers have been pressured huge to perform a task known as a “250” in the department, which is basically a random stop, question, and frisk. In New York, citizens must obey an officer’s request to be subjected to a random stop and frisk if the officer feels they look suspicious in any way, a controversial move by Mayor Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly. The quotas these officers must maintain include 250s, and racial profiling is very common amongst officers looking to meet their department’s demands.
The NYPD is one of New York City’s only agencies to operate without any independent oversight. That means officers are left with absolutely no safe place to file complaints about police practice and systemic problems. There is no way for officers to voice their concerns about their job, and what they are being made to do. Legislation to create an independent Inspector General’s office to monitor NYPD policies and procedures was proposed, but never passed. This is a situation where both the public, and the police officers, are victims of political pressure and aggression. Where is the source of this? Where did it come from? Bloomberg? Commissioner Kelly? Somebody else?
Many people (myself included) consider this law to be a blatant violation of human rights, and officers don’t often want to perform 250s. Citizens hate police in areas where 250s are most common, but not because they are doing anything wrong. It’s because they are repetitively stopped, and as in the case of this recording, verbally and physically abused.
So are these searches warranted? Do they yield results? According to the Guardian, no. Only 3% of the 2.4 million recorded stops yielded in any crime convictions. For the sake of being specific about the policy’s effectiveness and deterring crime, only 0.3% of the 2.4 million stops resulted in a jail sentence more than 30 days long, and 0.1% were for violent crimes.
That’s an awful lot of innocent people who had their rights violated, and possibly went through this kind of experience displayed above, while doing nothing wrong… possibly something as simple as walking home from work.
What do you take from this video and this recording? How do you feel about these laws, and are they a good thing for our communities to support? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.