NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — With protesters calling to defund the police and a spike in crime citywide, the NYPD is also experiencing an increase in members filing for retirement.
There was a round of applause Friday for NYPD Deputy Inspector Richard Brea as the Bronx precinct commander retired after nearly three decades on the force.
He’s far from alone.
The NYPD says so far this month, 233 members have filed for retirement, nearly double compared to the same time last year.
Sources tell CBS2 there’s been a 19% increase in retirements of uniformed officers since March compared to the same period last year.
“What we’re experiencing here in the NYPD is no different than what other jurisdictions are experiencing,” retired NYPD Lt. Darrin Porcher said.
Porcher now teaches criminal justice at Pace University.
“The lack of support from political leaders is one component. The second component is the cantankerous relationship between police and community in connection with police and community relations, and third, you just have external issues such as many family members that may feel a sense of repulsiveness to you being an officer,” he said.
In the wake of George Floyd‘s death, thousands of protesters have been marching daily in New York City for police reform, and now hundreds are camping out in front of City Hall, demanding Mayor Bill de Blasio cut $1 billion from the NYPD’s $6 billion budget.
“We cannot speak to police keeping people safe when there’s a whole world of Black and brown people who are constantly expressing that police have not been the ones to make them feel safe,” protester Tatianna Hill said.
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Earlier this month, NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea disbanded the undercover anti-crime unit, reassigning its 600 members.
There’s also been a recent spike in crime citywide with the number of shootings comparable to the 1990s.
“We’re absolutely dealing with a criminal justice system that isn’t fully functioning right now. The courts aren’t fully up and running, obviously at all,” de Blasio said Friday.
“What do you think that NYPD top brass and the mayor should be doing right now?” CBS2’s Ali Bauman asked Porcher.
“I think there needs to be a reevaluation of the deployment of personnel and instructing the personnel within the department,” he said. “We need something that will bolster the morale.”
CBS2 asked an NYPD spokesman for their take on the uptick in retirements, but they did not comment. The mayor has said he will cut the NYPD’s funding when the city budget is due next week but says it will not be by $1 billion, like protesters and the City Council are proposing.