Manhattan officials are calling on New York City’s MTA to bring in platform barriers at subway stations after multiple people two people were shoved onto the tracks in the last week.
Earlier this month, a woman, Michelle Go was killed after she was pushed onto the subway tracks. A man was also pushed onto the subway tracks on Sunday morning, but survived.
Manhattan’s elected officials want the MTA to ‘move as quickly as possible’ and begin the testing of the protective barriers.
The MTA has been resistant to bring in the barriers saying that it would be complicated to implement at many stations.
New York City subway is to look at bringing in platform barriers at subway stations in Manhattan after two people were shoved onto the tracks. Pictured, the Beijing subway
Manhattan’s elected officials want the MTA to ‘move as quickly as possible’ and begin the testing of the protective barriers. Pictured, the London Underground
Manhattan’s elected officials want the MTA to ‘move as quickly as possible’ and begin the testing of the protective barriers. Pictured is the Fulton Street Subway station in lower Manhattan which does not have barriers
Subway crimes are also on the rise. Michelle Go (pictured) died last Saturday, January 15, after she was shoved off the subway platform at West 42nd Street and Broadway near 9.40am
‘The density and crowding of subways here … makes our stations more vulnerable,’ Borough President Mark Levine said to the New York Post.
‘It’s true that we have a huge number of needs and finite resources, but this would amount to a small fraction of the capital budget.’
Levine said the screen doors ‘must be given the priority they deserve, studied, and funded for installation,’ in a letter to MTA Chair Janno Lieber.
‘Each year, hundreds of New Yorkers enter subway tracks via accidental fall, trespassing, suicide attempts, and, in rare cases, being pushed. The tragic loss of Michelle Go on January 15th is but the most recent painful example,’ the letter stated.
The idea of introducing the screens was last examined in 2019 by the MTA which concluded that the doors would only be able to be installed at 128 of the subway system’s 472 stations at a cost of more than $7 billion.
‘There are some physical constraints,’ Lieber said during an interview on Sunday. ‘But we’re studying it again, and we are interested in seeing whether there are opportunities to install it, especially in some of the more, the busier stations where you get a little more crowded.
‘This is not just about preventing people from being pushed on the tracks — which is horrific but, thank God, rare. It’s also about preventing people from falling, from dropping their iPhones on the tracks, from suicide attempts. And it will prevent delays, because one of the main causes of delays is track fires.’
Subway barriers are in use across the world including the London Underground.
The barriers are also in use across Asia with Shanghai, Hong Kong and Tokyo subway systems all employing their usage. The barriers are also in use in Dubai, Singapore, Seoul and Shanghai.
New York’s new mayor Eric Adams promised to tackle ‘unrealistic laws’ he’s blamed for a ‘sea of crime.’
New York’s new mayor Eric Adams promised to tackle ‘unrealistic laws’ he’s blamed for a ‘sea of crime.’
‘We’re going to go after the underlying reasons you’re seeing crime in our city.. This is a sea of crime that is being fed by many rivers, and we have to dam each one of those rivers,’ Adams told CNN Sunday.
He spoke as a 61 year-old man was shoved onto the subway tracks on the A/C platform at Fulton Street Station on Sunday. The victim was able to climb back onto the platform without being struck by a train, and was treated at hospital for minor injuries.
The pusher – a man in his 20s wearing a camouflage jacket – fled the station and is being hunted by cops. It is unclear if the victim knew his aggressor, and what – if anything – prompted the attack.
‘We’ve been unsuccessful to do throughout the years. These crimes did not start during my administration. They have been here for too long, in many parts of our community. We have to go after those laws, which are not realistic,’ he told CNN’s Dana Bash on Sunday.
A 61 year-old man suffered minor injuries after being shoved in front of a train at Fulton Street Subway station on Sunday (file photo)
It is unclear what specific laws Adams was referring to, but he went on to decry the ‘flow of guns’ in the city and the failure to ‘educate black and brown children in the city of New York, if not in the rest of the country.’
Asked for a specific law that would reassure nervous New Yorkers, he cited plans to flood the city’s streets with plain clothed offices to tackle gun crime.
Adams’ comments come as crime in the new year is up over 35 percent from the same time last year.
On Friday, rookie cop Jason Rivera was shot dead while his partner Wilbert Mora had to undergo brain surgery for a ‘significant injury.’ Both officers had been shot in the head. Last Saturday, Deloitte manager Michelle Go, 40, died after she was shoved off the subway platform at West 42nd Street and Broadway near 9.40am.
Adams’ comments came less than two days after Jason Rivera (left), 22, was shot and killed on Friday night. His partner Wilbert Mora, who signed up in 2018, was in critical condition
Crime in the city is up 35 percent compared to this time last year. Robbery alone is up by 25 percent
Transit crimes are already up 65 percent in 2022, with 96 crimes taking place in the first 16 days of the year, compared to only 58 in the same period last year, according to New York Police Department crime statistics released on Tuesday afternoon.
Simon Martial, 61, who was charged with Go’s second-degree murder, told reporters that he committed the senseless act ‘because I’m God, I can do it.’
Martial’s sister Josette Simon told outlets that he had been battling with schizophrenia for two decades and that he belonged in a mental health facility.
Adams told CNN that he’s placing mental health professionals and law enforcement in stations after admitting earlier this week that he did not feel safe riding the city’s public transit system.
‘We’ve put in a new plan in our subway system that’s going to increase mental health professionals and at the same time have our law enforcement personnel deployed there properly.’
Subway incidents are just one type of crime that is soaring in New York City in a pattern that continues weeks into the administration of the new mayor, who ran on public safety.
Felony assaults are up nearly 8 percent and robberies are up 25 percent compared to this time last year, according to the latest numbers from the New York Police Department.
Overall crime is up 35 percent from last year and 36 percent from a month ago.
‘Immediately, we’re going to institute a new version of a plain-clothes anti-gun unit; You’re going to see a visible presence in our subway system. We’re going to flood our system with mental health professionals and officers to move out the disorder that’s clearly in the subway system,’ Adams promised on Sunday.
Eric Adams, the mayor of New York, admitted on Tuesday that he did not feel safe on the subway, despite having said earlier that there was merely the ‘perception of fear’
On Sunday, Adams promised to send more mental health professionals and law enforcement in the subway system in an interview with CNN’s Dana Bash
He decried the presence of guns in the city’s streets.
‘It appears for every gun we remove off our street. Five more are coming in. That is unacceptable. And I think we have to deal with the institutional problems,’ he said.
On Saturday, Adams made an impassioned plea to not let criminals ‘hijack our city’ as he joined hundreds of mourners at a candlelit vigil for the two slain NYPD officers Jason Ribera and Wilbert Mora.
Police officers together with community leaders, members of the clergy, other municipal workers and local residents paid their respects and said prayers outside the NYPD’s 32nd Precinct stationhouse on 135th Street in Harlem at 6:30pm Saturday.
There were emotional scenes on the streets outside the stationhouse as police officers of all ranks stood together with their comrades and held candles in red cups in the freezing cold of a January New York night.
Some appeared visibly upset, dazed even, while others stood quietly praying, closing their eyes to reflect on what had happened in the last 24 hours.
NYPD police officers hold candles outside of the 32nd Precinct, in Harlem, and had a vigil for the two officers who were shot
NYC Mayor Eric Adams hugs the NYPD Chaplain outside of the 32nd Precinct, in Harlem, at a vigil for the two officers
Police officers of all ranks stood together with their comrades and held candles in red cups in the freezing cold of a January New York night.
On the sidewalk outsider the precinct, lines of flower and candles began filling the space
Hundred of people including members of the FDNY were all present at the vigil outsider the precinct
Flowers and candles have started to fill the sidewalk outside the precinct
Members of EMS held candles outside as they stood together for the evening vigial
‘No matter what happens we have to stay committed because that bullet could have taken an innocent person’s life. 11 month old babies – that’s any of our child. It’s unacceptable in this city. I’m committed and dedicated to unite us around this issue.’
Officers who worked with the fallen officer could be seen looking utterly despondent during parts of the vigil
Officers listened intently to those speaking at the vigil on the steps of the 32nd Police Precinct
Adams, himself a former cop who took office exactly three weeks ago, showed his support for the city’s police force by wearing a black and white NYPD baseball cap as he hugged officers who had worked closely with the two who were shot.
Speaking on the steps of the police precinct, Adams grabbed a megaphone and vowed to unite the city against violence, which continues to soar despite his vows of a crackdown on lawlessness.
‘We’re in a battle with a small number of people that believe they will hold our city hostage with violence,’ Adams said. ‘We made it too easy and too comfortable for people to carry guns in New York. We made it too easy for us to have a gun environment in this country and in the city. So we need help from the federal government.
‘Don’t give up. Don’t become so frustrated and disenchanted to allow the violent people around us to do what they think they could do. Don’t allow them to take and hijack the peace of our city,’ the mayor begged.
‘No matter what happens we have to stay committed because that bullet could have taken an innocent person’s life. An 11 month old baby was shot! That’s any of our children. It’s unacceptable in this city. I’m committed and dedicated to unite us around this issue.’
Adams repeated his call from Friday night to the federal government during vigil and other elected officials backed him up on the belief that New York criminals were arming themselves with out-of-state fire power.
In a Friday press conference, Chief of Detectives James Essig told the media that the gun used in the crime was reported stolen in Maryland in 2017.
Officers from across the city descended on the narrow Harlem street to pay their respects, including those from the NYPD’s counterterrorism unit. Members of other emergency services, including the FDNY, also came to spend a few precious moments in thought, including EMS workers.
Other members of the community came by to light candles and lay flowers. After leaving their personal tributes, they leaned against the wall of the stationhouse, some with tears in their eyes.
Some decided to leave signs showing their support for the officers and their bereft fellow officers.
‘Stop killing out NYPD Officers and Community Members! NYPD I support you,’ read one.
Others took aim at Adams: ‘NYPD need a raise. How much is a cop life worth? Blue Lives Matter.’
Other members of the community came by to light candles and lay flowers
After leaving their personal tributes, they stood against the wall of the precinct, some with tears in their eyes, as they stood shoulder to shoulder, showing their support for New York’s Finest
Speaking on the steps of the police precinct, New York City mayor Eric Adams grabbed a megaphone as he vowed to unite the city against violence
‘Don’t give up. Don’t become so frustrated and disenchanted to allow the violent people around us to do what they think they could do. Don’t allow them to take and hijack the peace of our city,’ the mayor begged as he held a megaphone
New York Mayor Eric Adams speaks during the vigil following the shooting of two police officers in Harlem
Police officers hold candles as they attend a vigil following the shooting of two police officers in Harlem on Friday
People attend a vigil following the shooting of two police officers in Harlem, New York
Flowers and candles are pictures at a makeshift memorial during a vigil following the shooting of two police officers in Harlem
Firefighters with the FDNY could be seen standing outside the precinct together with the Guardian Angels, seen in red berets
Officers could be seen outside of the Harlem police precinct
Officers stood shoulder to shoulder with their arms wrapped around one another as they took in the magnitude of what had happened
Officers placed their arms around one another as they supported each other during a moment of grief
Officers of varying ranks were all present at the vigil including a sergeant from the NYPD
An NYPD officer is seen listening to the Mayor and other community member speaking from the steps of the precint
Members of the NYPD listened intently to what was being said while also spending time with their thoughts
Officers were seen outside the precinct as police and community leaders spoke
Representatives from NYPD Community Affairs were also part of those gathered outside
Many of the officers gathered wore facemasks outside
A member of the counterterrorism force was pictured together with their dog at the vigil
Community Advocate Tony Herbert, The United Clergy Coalition and Uniting Clergy Community And Police (UCCAP), were among those organizations taking part.
The vigil’s purpose was ‘to show all NYPD officers support as they mourn the loss of one of their brothers and pray for the officer fighting for his life,’ the group’s said.
Even top brass from neighboring counties weighed in on the tragedy.
‘Last night’s intentional murder and critical wounding of two of New York’s Finest is another sad day for our nation,’ Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said in a statement.
‘Too many officers have been injured and killed due to individuals who have no respect for law and order. It is time and long overdue for the nation to stand by all police officers and recognize them for the dangerous and difficult jobs they do everyday.
‘Our prayers and support go out to both officers, their families and the members of the NYPD,’ Ryder said.
Police representatives and community leaders could be seen standing on the steps of the precinct
Some of those present decided to capture the vigil on their cellphones in order to keep a memory for themselves
Members of the FDNY were seen bowing their heads in prayer at the vigil on Saturday night
Local Harlem residents also came by to light candles and pray for the fallen officer and hit critically injured partner
Other members of the community came by to light candles and lay flowers
EMS members could also be seen gathered at the vigil as they held candles
Some decided to leave signs showing their support for the officers and their bereft fellow officers
One sign took aim at Mayor Adams: ‘NYPD need a raise. How much is a cop life worth? Blue Lives Matter.’
Many officers appeared visibly upset a they stood outside in the freezing cold on Saturday night remembering a fallen officer and his partner
Members of National Action Network pray during a news conference near the scene of the shooting in Harlem
People gather for a news conference organized by the National Action Network near the scene of a shooting on Saturday
People gather for a news conference organized by the National Action Network on Saturday
Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner, speaks during a news conference organized by the National Action Network
Members of the National Action Network raise their hands during a news conference
Members of National Action Network pray during a news conference near the scene of shooting in Harlem
New York City Police Department clergy liaison Chaplain Robert Rice speaks during a news conference organized by the National Action Network
Members of the National Action Network raise their hands while praying for the officers involved and their families
Earlier on Saturday it emerged how the convicted felon who shot and killed a rookie New York Police officer had shared anti-cop propaganda on his Facebook page and allegedly argued his with mother over his vegan diet.
Lashawn McNeil, 47 – who was out on probation when he used a Glock 45 equipped with a high capacity 40 round magazine to kill Jason Rivera, 22 and injure Wilbert Mora, 27, – argued with his mother, Shirley Sourzes, about his veganism and had shared a controversial music video in 2014 depicting officers getting gunned down.
Lashawn J. McNeil, 47, opened fire on the officers, and was shot in the arm and head. He was undergoing surgery on Friday night. He was out on probation at the time following a New York narcotics arrest, and had four previous arrests in two other states
The video shows footage of police brutality against black men as two rappers appear holding guns to the head of a stoic white officer as they sing, ‘Time to start kill these coppers.’
The music video, ‘Hands Up’ by Uncle Murda & Maino, was posted as a tribute to Eric Garner, a black man who was choked to death by a white NYPD officer and whose cry, ‘I can’t breathe,’ became a rallying cry for the Black Lives Matter Movement.
Along with the video, McNeil shared a slew of conspiracy theory posts and videos on his Facebook page, which warned of a coming race war, that McDonalds conducted blood sacrifices, that black people were aliens, and that the UN had established a global army to bring about a new world order. He stopped sharing the conspiracy posts by early 2015.
NYPD senior officials told NBC that McNeil had moved in with his Sourzes at her Harlem apartment in November 2021 and had tried to convert his family to share his beliefs.
New York Police posted a photo of the blood-covered illegal Glock 45 equipped with a high capacity 40 round magazine that was used to kill rookie officer Rivera and critically injure Mora.
Rivera, who grew up only five miles from the shooting and signed up a little over a year ago, in November 2020, died in the attack. His partner Wilbert Mora, who joined the NYPD in 2018, is currently fighting for his life.
Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch has invited the public to attend Rivera’s funeral to ‘send a message’ that the city stands behind the NYPD. Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.
McNeil was shot and injured by a third officer, after he tried to flee the house.
He was in surgery on Friday night, and his Sourzes, who called the police on him for threatening her, allegedly told police she knew he carried guns and that ‘he has problems,’ the New York Post reported.
Sources told the Post that she had told McNeil not to come home with firearms while helping out his disabled brother, and that she did not believe he was carrying a weapon when she called police on Friday night.
The sources added that McNeil blamed his mother for being blind in one eye. It’s not clear how the condition happened.
Police recovered an illegal Glock 45 at the scene, equipped with a ‘high capacity magazine.’ The drum magazine gives a gun 40 additional rounds, allowing the user to fire a total of 50 rounds
The incident had started out as ‘a normal verbal family dispute with no injuries or anything out of the ordinary’, police sources added.
The drum magazine McNeil had equipped to his Glock allows it to hold an additional 40 rounds to the gun’s ten, giving the shooter a total of 50 rounds to fire.
New York prohibits the use of magazines holding more than 10 rounds.
Eric Adams, the mayor of New York – an ex NYPD officer, who only took office three weeks ago – angrily declared at the Harlem hospital that the violence must stop.
‘It is our city against the killers,’ he said.
‘This is not just an attack on three brave officers. This was an attack on the city of New York.’
President Joe Biden responded to the tragedy on Twitter, writing: ‘Jill and I are saddened to hear two NYPD officers were shot last night — one fatally. We’re keeping them and their families in our prayers. Officers put on the badge and head into harm’s way every day. We’re grateful to them and their families for their extraordinary sacrifice.’
The officers’ deaths are the first under Adams, who was elected in part to combat the city’s surging crime, and the first shooting deaths of an NYPD officer since July 2017.
In 2014, McNeil had shared the controversial music video, ‘Hands Up’ by Uncle Murda & Maino, which depicts violence against white police officers
From 2014 to 2015, McNeil’s Facebook was filled with conspiracy theory posts that warned of a coming race war, that McDonalds conducted blood sacrifices, that black people were aliens, and that the UN had established a global army to bring about a new world order
First responders saluted Rivera’s body as it was carried out on Friday night
A procession carried the body of officer River by W135th Street and Lenox Avenue
Rivera and his partner Wilbert Mora are the fourth and fifth officers shot so far this year – by comparison, last year, a total of 10 police officers were shot in the entire state of New York
The NYPD said, ‘We vow to #NeverForget Jason as his fellow Finest vow to honor his tremendous legacy of service & the ultimate sacrifice’
McNeil was allegedly arguing with his mother on Friday night when she made a call to police
The officers’ deaths are the first shooting deaths of an NYPD officer since July 2017
The NYPD is continuing to investigate the case and was interviewing local residents on Saturday morning
People held a vigil in Manhattan for the slain officer and called on the community to unite behind the NYPD
LASHAWN J. MCNEIL’S CRIMINAL RAP SHEET
Lashawn McNeil, 47, was well known to NYPD officers, who were called to his family’s New York City house on a domestic violence claim in August
The felon has had five arrests in three different states between 1998 and 2003
1998: McNeil was arrested for unlawful possession of a weapon in South Carolina
Records show that the matter was dismissed
2002: He was arrested for assaulting a police officer in Allentown, Pennsylvania, where he had a registered address
2003: He was also arrested twice on a felony drug charge and a misdemeanor narcotics charge in Pennsylvania
That same year, he was arrested and convicted of a felony narcotics charge in New York City, which he was still serving probation for
Rivera and Mora are the fourth and fifth officers shot so far this year – by comparison, last year, a total of 10 police officers were shot in the entire state of New York.
Patrick Lynch, the president of the Police Benevolent Association, the largest municipal police union in the world representing 50,000 active and retired officers, excoriated the city’s leaders for not doing enough.
Lynch has been highly critical of the new Manhattan District Attorney, Alvin Bragg, who announced on taking office at the beginning of the month that he would not prosecute certain crimes.
Lynch said on January 4 that he had ‘serious concerns about the message these types of policies send to both police officers and criminals on the street.’
On Friday night, he was furious, and pointed the finger firmly at Bragg and his policies.
‘Our hearts are broken, we’re in shock, our knees are buckling,’ he said.
‘And we’re angry, because we’ve been here before.
‘We’re angry, because we saw it coming.
‘We’re angry, because we said it would happen – and it happened again.’
Devastating footage showed the officers’ colleagues rushing them to hospital after McNeil – who has been arrested in three states – opened fire, using a stolen Glock 9mm gun, which was recovered at the scene.
The gun was outfitted with a drum magazine, a fire arm accessory that has been the subject of controversy and are illegal in New York, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Vermont and the District of Columbia, which all have a limit on magazine capacity.
Drum magazines and semi-automatic firearms were prohibited between 1994 and 2004 when the government passed the Federal Assault Weapons Ban, a legislative effort kicked off by the 1989 Stockton, California elementary school shooting.
After the ban ended in 2004, each state was free to make its own regulations on assault weapons and ammo capacity, with New York choosing to the set the capacity at 10 rounds.
Rivera, Mora and a third officer were called to a domestic violence incident at around 5:10pm on Friday.
BAN ON DRUM MAGAZINES EXPIRED IN 2004
Drum magazines, such as the one used by Lashawn McNeil, are prohibited in the state of New York.
The state banned them in 2013 after they became legal to use nationwide in 2004 when a federal ban expired.
The Federal Assault Weapons Ban was imposed by Congress and President Bill Clinton in 1994 following a series of high profile mass shootings using semi-automatic weapons and extended magazines.
The ban was first pitched in 1989 after Patrick Purdy entered the Cleveland Elementary School in Stockton, California, with a semi-automatic weapon, killing five schoolchildren, and injuring 32 others.
It was the highest number of deaths and injuries for a school shooting at the time, triggering lawmakers to propose a ban on assault weapons and their extended magazines.
In 1993, CNN, USA Today and Gallup published polls that 77 percent of Americans supported the ban.
The main argument stemmed from the weapon and magazines’ high-kill capacity.
The following year, former presidents Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan wrote Congress and then president Bill Clinton to pass a ban on the guns and their magazine accessories.
The ban applied only to weapons manufactured after the date of the enactment and expired ten years later in 2004.
All constitutional challenges against the ban failed, as did all attempts to renew it.
After the ban expired, it fell on states to pass regulations on the firearms and the extended magazines.
In 2013, New York passed legislation setting the limit on magazine capacity to 10 rounds.
Similar limits were enacted in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Vermont and the District of Columbia.
The McNeils’ called police claiming her 47-year-old son was threatening her.
He was well known to officers, who were last called to the house on a domestic violence call in August.
McNeil had previously been arrested in New York in 2003 on felony narcotic charges, and was out on probation.
He also had four other arrests in two different states.
In 1998, he was arrested in South Carolina for the unlawful possession of a weapon.
In Pennsylvania, where his registered address was, in Allentown, he was arrested in 2002 for assaulting a police officer.
He was also arrested twice in Pennsylvania in 2003 – once on a felony narcotics charge, and once on a misdemeanor narcotics charge.
When the three officers arrived at the McNeil house, the mother was in a front room with another son. She said that her threatening son was in the back room, and so Rivera and Mora approached the room along a narrow 30-foot hallway.
The third officer remained with the mother, Sourzes and her other son.
When Rivera and Mora got close, McNeil opened fire, shooting both officers.
He made a dash for the door, but was shot by the third officer in the right arm and head.
McNeil is alive and hospitalized in critical condition, NYPD spokesperson Lt. John Grimpel said, correcting earlier reports that he had been killed.
Police recovered a Glock 9mm gun at the scene, which they said had been stolen in Baltimore in 2017.
Police audio reveals the moment the gunfight broke out, with multiple shots heard being fired.
‘Shots fired,’ one says, and sirens can be heard in the background. ‘Cop shot. We need additional units.’
The dispatcher was then desperately asking nearby units to clear the street, and clear a route for the ambulances.
‘Two officers shot,’ another says. ‘We are bringing NYs to the hospital. Have units to back up.’
The officers were taken to Harlem Hospital.
‘Due to a police incident, avoid the area of West 135 Street between Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd and Malcolm X Blvd. in Manhattan,’ the NYPD said.
‘Use an alternate route when traveling nearby and expect a police presence in the surrounding area.’
It was the third incident in less than 72 hours involving NYPD officers getting shot in the line of duty, following an incident in the Bronx late on Tuesday night and another officer shot early Thursday morning on Staten Island.
The officer in the Bronx, Officer Kaseem Pennant, who was shot in the leg while scuffling with a teenage suspect, has already been released from the hospital.
Detective Dominick M. Libretti, shot through the door and hit in the leg while serving a search warrant for drugs in Staten Island, underwent surgery at the hospital, where he was recovering. He was said to be in stable condition, but his injury was serious.
On January 1, Officer Keith Wagenhauser was shot in the head in his patrol car by a stray bullet, while sitting outside a Bronx precinct. He has been released from hospital.
Slain NYPD rookie sought to improve his community and bridge the gap between residents and cops
NYPD Officer Jason Rivera, 22
Jason Rivera, 22, who grew up in the Inwood district of Manhattan – five miles from where he was shot and killed – said he wanted to join the New York Police Department to improve community relations, and help people.
The young officer said he was inspired to join the NYPD after seeing how strained the relationship was between his local community and the police department during the city’s troubled Stop and Frisk era.
‘Growing up in Inwood, Manhattan, the community’s relationship between the police and community was not great,’ Rivera wrote in a letter to the police academy after he became a cop in November 2020.
‘I remember my brother being stopped and frisked…I was too young to know that during that time, the NYPD was pulling over and frisking people at a high rate.’
Rivera said he was bothered by how he viewed the police and how they viewed him and his community, and he wanted to be the catalyst to change that by joining the NYPD.
‘Coming from an immigrant family, I will be the first to say that I am a member of the NYPD – the greatest police force in the world,’ he wrote on his application form.
‘Growing up in New York City, I knew how impactful my role as a police officer would go in this chaotic city of about 10 million people.
‘I know that something as small as helping a tourist with directions, or helping a couple resolve an issue, would put a smile on someone’s face.’
He then saw the NYPD trying to reform, and he wanted to be part of the change.
‘This is when I realized that I wanted to be part of the men in blue; better the relationship between the community and the police.’
NYPD officials and his fellow officers at the 32nd Precinct vowed to never forget the rookie officer after he was shot and killed, and his partner critically injured, when a convicted felon out on parole shot them in Harlem on Friday.
‘Tonight, we mourn the loss of a hero officer — a son, husband, and friend,’ the NYPD said in a statement.
‘Only 22 years old, Police Officer Jason Rivera was murdered in the line of duty. We vow to #NeverForget Jason as his fellow Finest vow to honor his tremendous legacy of service & the ultimate sacrifice.’
A memorial lied outside the NYPD’s 32nd Precinct to honor slain officer Jason Rivera, 22
A copy of Jason Rivera’s letter to the New York Police Academy about why he became an officer
Eric Adams, mayor of New York City, is seen on Friday night addressing the press and crowds of police officers at Harlem hospital
Patrick Lynch, the president of the Police Benevolent Association, urged all New Yorkers to attend Rivera’s funeral, in a show of support for the NYPD
A large crowd of NYPD officers gathered to hear Adams, Lynch and the NYPD Commissioner speak, Friday at Harlem hospital
NYPD officers gather at Harlem Hospital after the shooting on Friday night
Members of NYPD are seen inside Harlem Hospital on Friday night
Officers stand on the steps of the hospital awaiting news of their colleague
Police officers are pictured on the scene in Harlem, where two officers were shot and one killed
The officers were responding to a domestic violence call on Friday night
The shooting is the first death of a members of the NYPD since Eric Adams took over as mayor on January 1
A police officer stands guard on the corner of the street in Harlem
Bragg, the Manhattan district attorney, who has been accused of being soft on crime for saying he will not prosecute certain crimes, said it was a ‘horrible tragedy’.
‘This is a horrible tragedy and our thoughts and prayers go out to the officers, their families and the entire NYPD,’ he said.
‘The officers who serve and protect us risk their lives every day. Violence against police cannot be tolerated.’
Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell denounced the spate of violence against the New York Police Department.
‘Countless officers lined this hallway after carrying him in and grieve for their brother while praying with everything they have for the other’ officer, Sewell said.
‘I am struggling to find the words to express the tragedy we are enduring. We’re mourning, and we’re angry.’
Adams was flanked by Patrick Lynch, head of New York’s largest police union, as he spoke
Keechant Sewell, the commissioner of New York police, said she was ‘struggling to find the words for the tragedy we are enduring’
Adams said enough was enough.
‘We must save this city together. That is what we must do,’ he said, speaking at the Harlem hospital.
‘The unification of fighting this battle goes beyond rhetoric.
‘It is time for us to save our city.’
Adams said that more must be done to stop weapons flooding in to New York City, where legally obtaining a gun is complicated by design.
‘Let me be clear. There are no gun manufacturers in New York City. We don’t make guns here,’ he said.
‘How are we removing thousands of guns off the street and they still find their way onto the streets, and into the hands of killers?
‘We need Washington to join us and act now to stop the flow of guns into New York City, and cities like New York.’
Crime is up 35 percent since Eric Adams took over as mayor of New York City
Overall crime is up 35 percent in the Big Apple
Adams demanded that the federal government do more to end the bloodshed.
‘We are all witnesses. We have witnessed these murders and the failure on the federal level to stop the flow of guns into the city,’ he said.
‘We are not going to live under the gun of these dangerous people.’
He urged the police not to ‘give up on this city’, telling the saddened and angry officers that they should ignore criticism on social media, and continue to protect the residents.
‘Don’t give up on these people in this city,’ he said. ‘Don’t give up.
‘Don’t think they don’t want you to do your job.
‘Twitter and Instagram – they are not the people of this city.
‘We are going to protect our city. That’s our promise and commitment.’
Lynch, the union chief, urged New Yorkers to attend the funeral of Rivera, when it is announced, saying that the police need the support.
Lynch on January 4 said that he was worried about the new Manhattan District Attorney, Alvin Bragg, and his ‘soft on crime’ policies
‘We carried our brother here,’ he said.
‘We shouldered him in. And we’ll shoulder him out.
‘But it can’t be us alone.
‘We will bow our heads in sadness. But we need you too.
‘The streets can’t just be full of New York City police officers at this funeral.
‘The public has to come.
‘The public has to send a message to anyone that dares to harm a New York City police officer: not here, not now, not today, not to us.
‘We’re humbly asking you to come out and help us.’
Adams, 61, retired from the police force as a captain after 22 years and entered politics in 2006.
His predecessor, Bill de Blasio – a Democrat, like Adams – had a torrid relationship with police, and towards the end of his second term suffered relentless attacks from police unions, who felt he had failed them.
Adams, by contrast, presented himself as being tough on crime while also respecting human rights. He strongly rebuffed calls from progressives to defund the police – de Blasio in July 2020 had cut $1 billion from the NYPD budget, further infuriating officers.
Adams campaigned on the claim that his experience, both as an officer and as someone who was ‘assaulted by police officers,’ has helped him better understand the situation.
However, Adams has also been criticized for saying that some controversial tactics, including ‘stop-and-frisk,’ can help police officers on the job.
‘I became a police officer, I understand crime, and I also understand police abuse,’ he declared after winning the city’s hard-fought Democratic primary in July 2021.
‘And I know how we can turn around not only New York, but America. We’re in a terrible place, and we can turn this country, this city, around.’
Adams said he ran for mayor to ‘turn pain into purpose’ as many feel they have been ‘betrayed’ by leadership.
‘My fellow New Yorkers, that betrayal stops on January 1,’ he said. ‘We are going to make a difference.’
Yet he has had a difficult first three weeks in office.
In the past week alone he has attended a vigil for a 40-year-old Deloitte executive murdered by a homeless man who shoved her into the path of an oncoming subway train, in Times Square, and traveled to the scene of a Bronx shooting, where a baby girl was shot in the face.
He has also been confronted with the killing of a 19-year-old woman who was shot by a robber while working at an East Harlem Burger King.
Adams tweeted at the time that he would not ‘surrender the city’.
The last NYPD officer fatally shot in the line of duty, Brian Mulkeen, was hit by friendly fire while struggling with an armed man after chasing and shooting at him in the Bronx in September 2019.
Mulkeen’s death came about seven months after Det. Brian Simonsen was killed by friendly fire while he and other officers were confronting a robbery suspect at a cell phone store in Queens.
In 2017, Officer Miosotis Familia was ambushed by a gunman as she wrote in a notebook in a mobile command post. In 2016, Sgt. Paul Tuozzolo was killed in a gunfight with a man who’d broken into his estranged wife’s home.
In 2015, Officer Randolph Holder was shot and killed by a man riding a stolen bicycle in Manhattan and Officer Brian Moore died after he was shot by a man in Queens.
The year before, Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos were fatally shot by a man who ambushed them as they sat in their patrol car in Brooklyn.