LISTEN LIVE KPR - On Air: Listen Live to classical, jazz and NPR news Schedule LATEST
KPR 2 - On Air: Listen live to KPR's all talk-radio service, KPR2 Recordings

Share this page              

New York Police Commissioner Confirms Work Slowdown By Officers

New York City Police Commissioner Bill Bratton speaks during an NYPD swearing-in ceremony in New York on Jan. 7. He confirmed to NPR today that there had been a work slowdown by officers  in the weeks since two police officers were shot dead. He said the matter was being corrected.

New York City Police Commissioner William Bratton confirmed there had been a work slowdown by officers in the weeks since two police officers were shot dead, but added that the matter was being corrected.

"We've been taking management initiatives to identify where it's occurring, when it's occurring," Bratton told NPR's Robert Siegel. "I think the officers themselves have, on their own, been beginning to return to normal patterns of work. So we're coming out of what was a pretty widespread stoppage of certain types of activity."

The comments come days after Patrick Lynch, the head of the Patrolman's Benevolent Association, told Siegel there was no slow down. He attributed the decline in crime statistics — arrests and summonses for minor offenses are down dramatically — to the New York Police Department doubling up its foot patrols and patrol cars after the Dec. 20 shooting deaths of Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos.

Bratton's response today: "That would be one factor in terms of the decline of some of the numbers, but it would in no way influence significantly the overall dropoff of activity."

Relations between the NYPD and Mayor Bill De Blasio are tense following the deaths. Scores of officers turned their backs on the mayor at the funeral for the officers.

As NPR's Joel Rose reported, rank-and-file officers say De Blasio "contributed to an anti-police climate by not cracking down on protests after the death of Eric Garner," who died in police custody. Police unions say that climate fed into the shooting deaths of Ramos and Liu.

Bratton would not specifically discuss the Garner case, but told NPR's Seigel: "Life would be so much easier if people didn't resist the police in the first place and there would not be altercations. Life would be so much easier in the first place if people didn't engage in activity that resulted in other citizens calling, complaining about their activity."

He acknowledged that African-American men experience harsher treatment than their white counterparts, but noted it was not just at the hands of the police.

"We're talking about a much more complex, larger national issue — don't go blaming the police," he said. "I'm sorry, we're not going to be the whipping boy, if you will, for this issue in America."

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit

Tower Frequencies

91.5 FM KANU Lawrence, Topeka, Kansas City
96.1 FM K241AR Lawrence (KPR2)
89.7 FM KANH Emporia
99.5 FM K258BT Manhattan
97.9 FM K250AY Manhattan (KPR2)
91.3 FM  KANV Junction City, Olsburg
89.9 FM K210CR Atchison
90.3 FM KANQ Chanute

See the Coverage Map for more details

Contact Us

Kansas Public Radio
1120 West 11th Street
Lawrence, KS 66044
Download Map
785-864-4530 (Main Line)
888-577-5268 (Toll Free)