As the Bronx district attorney continues his investigation into possible ticket-fixing in Bronx precincts and may soon hand out indictments to police officers, some NYPD officers spoke to NY1 Thursday following a suicide attempt by a colleague who reportedly testified on the scandal before a grand jury.
Dozens of Bronx police officers allegedly worked with police union delegates to make parking tickets and other violations disappeared for officers' family members and other people.
Since spring, a grand jury has been going over evidence and hearing testimony from officers.
A New York City Police Department officer who reportedly testified in front of a grand jury last week was harmed after he tried to grab the electrified third rail at the 1 subway station at 238th Street and Broadway in the Riverdale section of the Bronx early Wednesday.
The officer was reportedly afraid that he would have to testify in open court before his colleagues.
Some Bronx officers who did not wish to be identified told NY1 that the practice of fixing tickets is "widespread" in the entire NYPD.
They were also not surprised that an officer awaiting possible indictment would try to end his own life.
"This officer could have really ended his life, and it is on the DA's hands and on [the NYPD] Internal Affairs [Bureau's] hands for dragging it for as long as they have," said an anonymous officer.
Many officers who spoke with NY1 seemed to be anxious over when indictments would be issued and who would receive them.
"This is going on two or three years now. How long does it take to figure out if someone has done something or hasn't done something?" said an anonymous officer. "If you do have something, let's go, let's get it going. Make these indictments that you have been talking about."
Officers across the city say helping a fellow officer get rid a ticket has been going on forever. They simply have to reach out to the police who is the union delegate where the ticket was issued.
A policeman and former union delegate told NY1, "Nothing was done corruption-wise. I never asked for money to fix summons, I never asked for a favor to fix a summons. It is a courtesy. You might as well indict this whole department. It is a widespread epidemic."
Police brass and police unions are afraid that the investigation could reach across the city.
"The [Patrolmen's Benevolent Association] gives out the phone numbers to all the delegates, to each other. Why do you think we have each others numbers, so we can play cards together?" said the former delegate.
Another police officer and former delegate told NY1 he testified to the grand jury and thought there will be indictments, because jurors seemed skeptical about why he fixed tickets.
On Wednesday, PBA President Patrick Lynch said in a statement about the investigation, "As this process has stretched from weeks to months, to now the better part of a year, with leaks of confidential grand jury materials and other inappropriate stories in the press, it is no surprise that New York City police officers have reached a breaking point. This issue could have and should have been addressed differently.
Lynch also said that the officer who attempted suicide "served this city well for over three decades and is a man of honesty and integrity and he and others deserve better than this treatment.”