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De Blasio Interviews Several Candidates To Fill NYPD Commissioner Slot

It's Believed Next Top Cop Will Have To End Or Scale Back Stop-And-Frisk

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio says changes in police policy will be the first big thing New Yorkers notice when he takes office.

As 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reported, de Blasio announced a 16-member transition team to speed the process of selecting his administration over the next six weeks. He has already met personally with three candidates for police commissioner, CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer reported Wednesday.

De Blasio is apparently not casting a very wide net in interviewing candidates for one of the most important jobs in his administration — someone to head the NYPD.

Here’s why:

“I as a New Yorker have a preference, not an iron-clad rule, but a preference for nominees who are New Yorkers, of whom had substantial New York experience,” de Blasio said.

So far, de Blasio says he’s interviewed NYPD Chief of Department Philip Banks and First Deputy Commissioner Rafael Piniero.

“I am impressed by both of them,” de Blasio said.

De Blasio has also met with Rudy Giuliani’s former police commissioner, Bill Bratton, who has also served as police commissioner in Boston and Los Angeles.

“I’m impressed by Mr. Bratton, Commissioner Bratton. I would simply say that it’s well known I’ve sought the advice of Commissioner Bratton over the last year or two, so it was a very productive meeting,” de Blasio said.

Kramer asked the mayor-elect what his priorities were in selecting a new police commissioner — someone skilled at fighting terrorism, keeping crime down, or enacting a new community policy program.

His answer?

“Yes,” de Blasio said. “I want all three and I believe you can achieve all three. Fighting terrorism is a given. We are the No. 1 terror target in the world.

“Obviously, the mission and a mission I’m confident we can achieve is to reduce crime. I’ve made clear throughout this campaign that we need to resolve the problem of police/community relations in a number of our neighborhoods and we need to bring police and communities back together,” de Blasio added.

The mayor-elect did not give any hint as to which man he liked best, but he did say that he wasn’t paying any attention to the antics of some who are publicly campaigning for the job or having people campaign for them.

De Blasio said he would make his decision based on the candidates’ records, getting to know them as individuals and if their values jive with his.

It will likely have to be someone committed to reducing stop-and-frisk, Kramer reported.

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