The incoming comptroller for New York City is requesting an NYPD security detail though he was a leading advocate for cutting $1 billion from the police department’s budget last year.
Brad Lander, who is taking over the job from Scott Stringer, expressed his “commitment working to defund the NYPD” in an open letter in June 2020, but now will be accompanied by a police security detail wherever he goes, the New York Post reported.
When the city council passed its budget this past June, Lander complained, saying he was “disturbed that this agreement increases the NYPD budget by nearly $200 million and increases headcount at both NYPD and the DOC.”
“All neighborhoods need and deserve to be safe, and we must confront rising levels of gun violence. But NYC already has more police officers per capita than nearly every large American city,” he continued, arguing that the funds instead should go to subsidize housing and mental health treatment.
But apparently, when it comes to his own protection, Lander doesn’t want the NYPD to spare any expense.
The Post quoted an NYPD source with more than 20 years of experience who ripped Lander as a major hypocrite.
“He’s the guy who hates the cops,” the source told the outlet. “If you don’t like cops, don’t use them.”
“Crime is at an all-time high and now you’re going to give him 12 to 14 cops? You’ve gotta give them vacation, sick time,” the source added. “All that for this guy, who nobody really knows. Would anyone know him if he was walking down the street?”
A spokesperson for Lander justified the NYPD security detail by saying it would not lead to an increase in the department’s budget or the number of officers because cops are regularly assigned to protect elected officials as it is.
“As he steps into citywide office, Brad is grateful to the city workers who keep the Comptroller’s office and City government running, including the officers assigned to his security by the NYPD,” Naomi Dann, the rep, told The Post.
“There’s no contradiction between believing that some of our public safety dollars would be better spent on supportive housing, mental health services, and restorative justice programs — and following longstanding NYPD protocol regarding safety for elected officials,” Dann added.
His security detail includes an NYPD officer who will serve as his chauffeur, The Post reported, adding that will likely make NYC streets safer.
That’s because the paper previously reported that Lander “has been caught speeding in school zones around the Big Apple eight times in the past five years, despite crusading against reckless drivers.”
“The liberal Democrat — who’s now a candidate for city comptroller — even racked up two violations in one week last month, one in Manhattan and another just blocks from his home in Brooklyn’s Park Slope,” The Post reported in April. “Lander has amassed a total of 118 vehicle and traffic violations since 2013, according to city records.”
Under outgoing Mayor Bill de Blasio, who also advocated for defunding the NYPD, crime in the city has skyrocketed.
Also in April, CBS New York reported that according to NYPD statistics, murders rose 60 percent year-over-year while rapes were up 54 percent.
Keechant Sewell, chosen by incoming Mayor-elect Eric Adams to be the first female police commissioner, has vowed to take on the crime spikes.
“I’ve been policing for 25 years, so, I’ve actually got some sort of a grasp on what I think works and doesn’t work,” she said earlier this month.
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