'We don't take that!': NYPD official blasts suspects who doused cops with water
NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan also criticized the officers who were hit with the water
By Esha Ray, Trevor Kapp, Rocco Parascandola and Thomas Tracy
New York Daily News
NEW YORK CITY — NYPD brass on Tuesday blasted the scoundrels caught on viral videos dousing cops with water during the weekend heatwave, promising that the culprits will be arrested.
But in the same breath NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan drubbed the cops who took the abuse.
“Any cop who thinks that that’s all right, that they can walk away from something like that, maybe they should reconsider whether or not this is the profession for them,” Monahan said Tuesday during an NYPD Longevity Celebration at police headquarters in Lower Manhattan, where cops who served 30 years or more were honored. “We don’t take that.”
Monahan, the highest-ranking uniformed police officer in the NYPD, said cops are searching for the water-throwing hooligans caught dousing cops in Harlem and Brownsville in separate videos.
In the Harlem incident Saturday, cops were arresting a suspect for disorderly conduct when “a couple of guys thought it was all right to throw water and a bucket at the cops,” Monahan said.
“But that ain’t all right,” the Bronx native added. “Arrests will be made because that is not acceptable for our men and women who are keeping people safe.”
Tuesday’s tough talk was starkly different than a tweet Monahan sent Monday evening about the videos, when he focused on the “remarkable progress” cops and the community had made together.
“EVERY New Yorker MUST show respect for our cops,” he wrote. “They deserve nothing less.”
The Harlem video shows several men tossing water at two officers while they try to arrest 22-year-old Ibrahima Niang on the hood of their car on St. Nicholas Ave. at W. 115th St. about 8:50 p.m. Saturday. At one point, a shirtless man throws an empty red bucket at the cops, hitting one officer in the back of the head.
Officers were called to the scene on a report of a group spraying pedestrians with water guns. When cops arrived, the troublemakers turned their water guns on the police, authorities charge.
“F--- you, you’re lucky you have that shield,” Niang yelled at cops who responded to the chaos, according to the criminal complaint.
Niang was charged with criminal mischief and ordered released without bail during a brief arraignment proceeding.
Cops also arrested 17-year-old Abdoulaye Diallo for criminal mischief.
“What the f--- leave us alone,” Diallo told the cops when he was taken into custody, according to court papers.
One salon employee who witnessed the arrests took the water sports in stride.
“It was so hot that day," the woman, who wished not to be named, recalled. "They hit the police too? Well the cops are supposed to stay alert."
“They hit an older lady walking across the street too, that wasn’t too nice,” she said about the water fights that took place before cops were called. "Everybody got hit. I was the last one to run inside the salon so I got drenched on my back. But we love it. It was a hot day.”
In another clip recorded Saturday afternoon in Brownsville, Brooklyn, cops are seen walking away sheepishly after they are mocked and soaked with buckets of water. Police sources say the officers were responding to an unruly crowd on E. New York Ave. near Herzl St. and turned to leave when the group splashed them.
Local merchants said a group of 15 or 20 young men were dousing older residents on the sidewalk but when cops showed up they targeted the blue uniforms.
“(The cops) went to the shop and said, ‘What’s the emergency?’ I told them, ‘There are people throwing water on people. They threw water in my store and our system went off.'” remembered Elizabeth Caba, 41, owner of Caba Deli & Grocery and a neighboring salon. “They crossed the street to speak with them. (Then) one of my clients said, ‘Oh my God! They threw water on the police!’"
“(The cop) was soaking wet,” Caba added. “It looked like he went swimming. Water was running down his face . . . I just feel bad.”
The doused cops were young officers on the force for less than a year, according to a police source. The two never mentioned the incident to their fellow officers for fear of being picked on for not taking action, the source added.
In a third clip, a young woman is repeatedly soaked by a group of men carrying buckets as she tries to talk to officers sitting in a patrol SUV. The cops remain inside their vehicle as the men laugh.
“The NYPD has issued guidance regarding the offenses for which a police officer could make an arrest in these situations," Patrick Lynch, president of the NYPD’s largest union, the Police Benevolent Association, said in a statement Tuesday.
“But our District Attorneys are almost universally refusing to prosecute these same offenses, and new laws passed this year in Albany will require cops to merely issue a ticket for these and many other crimes. The chaos will continue to escalate unless something changes.”
On Tuesday, the PBA tweeted a video that shows a young man cursing out two cops on a subway train.
“Suck my d---,” the man repeatedly tells the two cops, claiming afterwards that he was simply exercising free speech and the cops can’t touch him.
During the course of the clip, the cops take the tongue lashing without laying a hand on the callous commuter.
Lynch called for changes to the laws.
“At a minimum, there should be a felony charge for assaulting a police officer by throwing or spraying water or any other substance, and a misdemeanor charge for the attempt to do so," Lynch said. "It’s time for lawmakers to take a stand against disorder, on behalf of their constituents and the cops who protect them.”
Several city politicians and Mayor de Blasio also blasted the behavior seen in the videos.
“It’s not acceptable for anyone to resist address. It’s not acceptable for anyone to interfere with the NYPD when they’re effectuating an arrest. Throwing things at an NYPD officer is not only unacceptable but can lead to charges,” de Blasio said on NY 1 Monday night. “All of those actions can lead to charges.”
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