SBA Head: New York’s Anti-Police Sentiment Causes ‘Pantaleo Effect’

By Miguel Moreno
Miguel Moreno
Miguel Moreno
Miguel Moreno is a reporter based in New York City who works for the Epoch Media Group. His main area of focus is breaking news and politics.
July 27, 2019Updated: July 27, 2019

NEW YORK—President Donald Trump pressed the mayor of New York on July 25 to “stand up” for police officers who have been doused and sprayed with water.

Videos showing law enforcement being doused with buckets of water surfaced at the end of a stifling heatwave on July 22. What was surprising to many—including the president—was that no arrests were made by the soaked and humiliated officers of the law.

“What took place was completely unacceptable, and will not be tolerated,” wrote President Trump on Twitter. “Bill de Blasio should act immediately!”

Mayor de Blasio, however, responded with criticisms toward the president and insinuated that police officers are already protected. Since the videos surfaced, the mayor has condemned the conduct of those dousing the officers. Three suspects have been arrested.

Nonetheless, the mayor’s response struck a sour note with the Sergeants Benevolent Association (SBA), a union highly critical of de Blasio for stirring anti-police sentiment in New Yorkers.

“Rather than try to bring peace, and bring people together, he takes the opportunity to build upon his base, and keep the anti-police atmosphere in existence,” said the President of the SBA Ed Mullins in an interview with NTD News, adding, “which in turn creates harms-way for officers that are out on patrol.”

New York’s finest lost trust in the mayor for his support of Black Lives Matter (BLM) and doing away with the stop-and-frisk policy—a policy many officers accredited to lowering the crime-rate, according to TIME. BLM protesters are known for attacking law enforcement and chanting obscenities aimed at officers such as, “Pigs in a blanket! Fry ’em like bacon!”

While mourning two fellow officers, slain in 2014, hundreds turned their backs on the mayor as he gave his speech at the ceremony.

When the Uniform of Integrity is Smeared

But amid the puzzling water-dousing phenomenon of New York, Mullins sees another problem—besides the lack of respect people have for officers.

SBA has posted on Twitter at least five videos of five different cases where people harass and or douse police in water this week. “My question to everyone is, why did all the officers choose to do nothing?” asked Mullins.

He blames this on what he calls the “Pantaleo effect,” in reference to Officer Daniel Pantaleo, who was caught in the midst of a years-long civil rights investigation.

The officer, joined by others, arrested Eric Garner in 2014 for selling illegal cigarettes. During the arrest, Garner died of an asthma attack, prompting protests against police brutality from groups such as BLM.

On July 16, Attorney General William Barr said the Justice Department would not federally charge Pantaleo as there was insufficient evidence to do so.

Mullin said law enforcement officers are afraid of becoming the next Pantaleo. Although he understands why the drenched officers made no arrests, he disagrees with their actions.

But there is a solution, he said, and it begins with the mayor who is aware of the anti-police sentiment in the United States.

“I’ve been president of the union for 18 years, he’s been mayor for five—never once has he brought all the police unions in and said, ‘Hey, how can we really work something out with people?'”

Epoch Times Photo
A City of New York Police Department Officer in a file photo. (Mary Altaffer/AP)
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