Police Chief Bratton Blames 'Awful' NYPD Morale on Stop-Frisk Policy

Monday, 31 Mar 2014 09:54 AM

By Drew MacKenzie

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New York’s new police commissioner Bill Bratton has slammed his predecessor Ray Kelly and former Mayor Michael Bloomberg for creating an "awful" morale in the NYPD due to its overuse of the stop-and-frisk policy.

"Morale coming into this department was awful," he told WABC-TV’s "Up Close with Diana Williams" on Sunday.

"I don’t think I have an officer that comes up to me that doesn’t thank me … for improving morale. It was a very dispirited organization, I think beat down over several years, beaten up by the political establishment."

Bratton, who was appointed the top cop by New York’s new Mayor Bill de Blasio, partially blamed the morale problem on Kelly and Bloomberg going too far "in terms of stop, question and frisk, certainly."

And while referring to the controversial policy, he continued, "The commissioner and the former mayor did a great job in the sense of keeping the community safe, keeping crime down, but one of the tools used to do that, I believe, was used too extensively."

Bratton said that Kelly and Bloomberg’s "legacy" will now include a "federal monitor," and an enlarged Civilian Complaint Review Board.

The police chief added that although the department will continue to stop and frisk suspicious persons, the frequency has been greatly reduced.

Police made 12,495 stops between October and December — down 86 percent from 89,620 during the same time period in 2012, according to the Daily News. And of the stops during the last quarter of 2013, 16 percent resulted in an arrest, up 6 percent the same period in 2012.

"Bratton’s assessment is accurate," said Michael Palladino, head of the Detectives’ Endowment Association. "Although very successful against crime and terrorism, members of the NYPD were demoralized and rarely had the opportunity to enjoy their success, mostly due to the relentless demand for numbers."

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