Threatening the police with a riot apparently earns some people a “get out of jail free” card in New York City.
Out of fear that doing their job might spark anti-cop demonstrations, New York City police officers were instructed to look the other way while partygoers openly broke laws at the West Indian-American Day Parade over the weekend.
Despite the fact that officers routinely confiscate alcohol and drugs from revelers at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and other public events, detectives union chief Michael Palladino said NYPD supervisors instructed officers to show more “restraint” with the West Indian-American Day Parade, which has traditionally been plagued by violence, according to the New York Post.
NYPD brass “forbid us from making arrests, no matter what we saw, because they didn’t want riots,” one officer told the Post.
Apparently, Irish Catholics just aren’t riotous enough to earn immunity from city laws.
NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton’s actions seem to confirm the report, as he insisted on Monday there was no reason to crack down on the festivities despite four people being shot – including an aide to Governor Cuomo – and two others being stabbed during this year’s event.
The city’s top cop called the violence “unfortunate” but insisted it was “no reason to not go forward with the events.”
According to veterans of the force, the unprecedented “restraint” shown exclusively for the West Indian Day Parade by the NYPD isn’t anything new.
“In my 36 years with the department, that’s the only parade where I was told to look the other way,” Palladino said. “The political theme of decriminalization started at that parade decades ago.”
A retired officer also told the Post that violence, drugs, and alcohol are common themes at the parade, making policing of the event a nightmare for average cops.
“No one in their right mind wants to do that detail,” he said. “It’s the worst event of the year, in terms of violence, and it goes on for days.”
Frustrated cops who are told to turn a blind eye aren’t the only ones who have notice the NYPD’s decision to allow bad behavior. Revelers seem to take full advantage of the immunity shown by police.
“I’m allowed to drink and smoke,” said partygoer Nevin Budhu. “The cops see us and they don’t say anything. . . They are giving us a break because this is the one time we get to enjoy ourselves in public. ”
Generally speaking, when there is an event that is known for rampant criminal behavior, it’s a justifiable reason to increase police presence and actually enforce the law.
Is it any wonder people get shot and stabbed at an annual event where cops are busy showing “restraint” rather than doing their job?