EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

August 19, 2013

NYPD faces prospect of two new watchdogs

(Continued)

“I’d like to see you go to the funeral and explain to the family,” he snapped at a news conference Monday.

Kelly decried the court ruling during news show appearances Sunday; the judge has “indicted an entire police department... based on what we believe is very flimsy information,” he said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

Supporters hope Scheindlin’s ruling will embolden lawmakers to back what could be an extremely close veto override vote Thursday; sponsors expect it to succeed. Bloomberg, meanwhile, suggested Scheindlin’s ruling should give lawmakers pause about adding more monitoring.

The legislation also would make it easier to bring suits claiming discriminatory policing — cases like the one Scheindlin decided. She found police systematically and unjustly singled out black and Hispanic men for stop and frisks, about 90 percent of which don’t result in arrests or tickets.

The legislation would apply only in state court, easing some legal standards the advocates faced in the federal case, City Councilman Brad Lander said.

To some, the question isn’t whether to add the new watchdogs, but how much they could accomplish.

Police Sgt. Ed Mullins sees the inspector general as a bureaucratic add-on and the court monitor as “an easy way out for a judge.” Changing the dynamic between police and minority communities takes more than “coming in here and saying, ‘You gotta do this,’” said Mullins, who leads the Sergeants Benevolent Association union.

In Harlem, Edgar Sanchez, 34, digested the idea of new NYPD monitors with something of a shrug.

“They’ll still do whatever they want to do, and they’ll use the excuse that they’re protecting the people,” he said. “The police will always have that freedom.”

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Associated Press writer Colleen Long contributed to this report.

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Follow Jennifer Peltz at http://twitter.com/jennpeltz

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