ITY HALL -- The Sergeants Benevolent Association is calling for Police Commissioner James O’Neill’s resignation following video footage of cops getting doused with buckets of water in Harlem and Brooklyn, blaming the NYPD’s top brass for creating the “Pantaleo effect” throughout the department.
“Too little to late You have created the PANTALEO AFFECT. Minor crime enforcement, indictment of a Sgt for defending his life & indecision on buckets of water tossing on cops No backing of the NYPD. The men & women lost confidence in YOU. In the best interest of their safety RESIGN, [sic]” the SBA’s head Ed Mullins tweeted Tuesday in response to O’Neill condemning the incident.
One video shows several men tossing water at two officers while they try to arrest a man on the hood of their car in Harlem. At one point, a man throws an empty bucket at the cops, hitting an officer in the head.
In another clip, cops in Brooklyn are mocked and soaked with water after, officers were apparently responding to an unruly crowd in the area.
NYPD Chief Terence Monahan said Wednesday that a 28-year-old known gang member was arrested in Brooklyn in connection to the water bucket incident. The NYPD is looking for the other suspects involved and said no other arrests have been made.
“Actions like we’ve seen in videos recently will NEVER be tolerated in this city. YOU WILL BE ARRESTED,” Monahan said.
The mayor and police commissioner both quickly condemned what they saw in the videos.
The viral videos came on the heels of protests around the city after the Justice Department announced it would not bring federal charges against Island Officer Daniel Pantaleo who is accused of using a banned chokehold that led to Eric Garner’s July 2014 death on Bay Street.
Garner supporters have been calling for both O’Neill and Mayor Bill de Blasio to fire Pantaleo, whose NYPD disciplinary trial ended more than a month ago.
Despite the Justice Department’s decision, the mayor has touted the change in NYPD culture over the last five years following Garner’s death with the help of O’Neill’s neighborhood policing strategy and the retraining of NYPD cops on the use of excessive force.
COPS WOULD HAVE ACTED DIFFERENTLY ‘PRE-PANTALEO,’ BORELLI SAYS
But police supporters think officers in the viral videos would have acted differently “pre Pantaleo.”
“Police officers pre-Pantaleo would have turned around and made an arrest and probably would have had to use force,” said Island Councilman Joe Borelli (R-South Shore), who chairs the City Council’s Committee on Fire and Emergency Management.
“These boneheads knew that the officers’ hands were tied and would not be able to justifiably use force when you have a mayor who is politicizing Daniel Pantaleo when he has not been criminally charged and faces no federal civil rights violations.”