The secrecy is the result of a state law protecting the privacy of officer disciplinary records, and a recent city decision to adhere to the confidentiality rules more closely — a move that puts America's largest police force at odds with a national movement to make law enforcement more transparent to the public.
Concerns over transparency of the NYPD's disciplinary system took hold after the city appealed a decision by a state court judge ordering the release of the records of Daniel Pantaleo, the officer accused of putting Eric Garner in a fatal chokehold in 2014. A grand jury declined to indict the officer on criminal charges.
Since then, politicians and police reform activists have been pushing city officials for full disciplinary disclosure.
Recently, the city's police commissioner said he would begin releasing disciplinary reports with the offending officer's names redacted. A judge last week blocked that move after the city's largest police union filed an emergency request. A hearing is set for June.