The amount of gun violence over the holiday weekend was unprecedented. But Police Commissioner Dermot Shea says this was something he predicted.
There were at least 44 shooting incidents, including 63 victims between July 3 and 5. This same period a year ago, there were 16 shooting incidents and 21 victims.
Shea is pointing to the low number of inmates at Rikers as a reason why, saying “bad people” are not being held properly accountable.
“It’s bad people with guns. It doesn’t get any simpler than that,” he said. As for a pattern on the shootings, Shea says most are gang or drug related.
The Commissioner says precision policing and neighborhood policing can help target small numbers of people and build prosecutable cases.
“We can fix this. We don’t need a lot of new things. What we need is support, and that’s in short supply. We need tools — we need laws that makes sense — and then we need resources,” he said.
Speaking on police reform, Shea said, “we have to change that diaphragm bill that just came out of the City Council. It is insane and it is crippling police officers.”
He was referring to a recently-passed bill that puts a ban on police chokeholds. He previously argued it goes far further than the state’s chokehold ban.
“Police officers should not have to worry more about getting arrested than the person with the gun that they’re rolling around the street with,” he said.
The NYPD Commissioner joined Mornings On 1 via Skype.