Broken-windows policing and stop-and-frisk tactics would come back to New York City if a long-shot Republican candidate wins next year’s mayoral race.
“We’ve let the quality-of-life crimes go and it’s turned into more violent crime,” Bill Pepitone told the Daily News on Tuesday. “We need to go back to that type of [broken-windows] policing” meaning NYPD officers would often bust low-level offenders to prevent more severe crimes — hallmarks of the Giuliani and Bloomberg administrations.
Mayor de Blasio campaigned on a promise to undo those policies, citing the disproportionate rates at which people of color were targeted, and a judge in 2013 ruled stop-and-frisk had been applied in an unconstitutional way.
Pepitone said he disagreed with policies that had encouraged officers to rack up arrests based on racial profiling but said he agrees with the approach in principle.
“It should be a tool that police officers can use and use fairly to help take violent criminals and weapons off the street,” he said.
The native New Yorker and 27-year NYPD veteran said the recent uptick in violence, coupled with new police reforms from city electeds, inspired him to run for mayor.
“I’ve never seen [NYPD] morale this low and the way that you raise morale is by letting the police officers know you have their back 100% and you give them the tools,” said Pepitone, 53, who now lives on Staten Island.
He also promised to undo a recent package of police reforms if elected mayor. Those include a ban on chokeholds; the “POST” Act, which requires the NYPD to disclose its use of surveillance technology; and creation of a “disciplinary matrix” aimed at creating uniform punishment for cop infractions.
Pepitone said he supports the chokehold ban except for language that holds officers culpable for “sitting, kneeling or standing on the chest or back in a manner that compresses the diaphragm.”
Controversial Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa and perennial candidate John Catsimatidis are believed to be mulling Republican mayoral runs.
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