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De Blasio addresses criticism by NY police union – Part 1

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    New York City was on edge today, after the fatal shootings of a pair of police officers. The weekend attack sparked police union accusations against the mayor and left him on the defensive.

    New Yorkers stopped all day to place flowers at the site in Brooklyn where two policemen were killed on Saturday. And the murders dominated the day for New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, including at a luncheon for the city's Police Athletic League.


    It was an attack on our democracy, it was an attack on our values, it was an attack on every single New Yorker, and we have to see it as such. I think it's time for everyone to put aside political debates, put aside protests, put aside all of the things that we will talk about in due time.


    The two officers, Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu, were shot as they sat in their cruiser on Saturday. Their killer, 28-year-old Ismaaiyl Brinsley, who had a history of violence and apparent mental instability, shot his girlfriend Shaneka Thompson in Baltimore, before traveling to New York, shooting the officers, and then taking his own life.

    Earlier, he posted social media references to the police killings of Eric Garner on Staten Island and Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. On Instagram, he wrote: "They take one of ours. Let's take two of theirs."

    Over the weekend, leaders of protests over the Garner and Brown cases, as well as their family members, condemned the killings of Ramos and Liu.

    GWEN CARR, Mother of Eric Garner: We are going in peace, and anyone who's standing with us, we want you to not use Eric Garner's name for violence, because we are not about that.


    But the head of New York's police union charged the mayor and protest leaders set the stage for what happened Saturday.

  • PATRICK LYNCH, Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association:

    We tried to warn. It must not go on. It cannot be tolerated. That blood on the hands starts on the steps of City Hall in the office of the mayor.


    Police officers even turned their backs on de Blasio in protest Saturday night when he visited the hospital where the two officers had been taken.

    This afternoon, the mayor and New York City Police Commissioner Bill Bratton responded at a joint news conference.


    I will keep reaching out to everyone who serves this city. They don't have to all agree with me.

  • WILLIAM BRATTON, New York City Police Commissioner:

    Can you point out to me one mayor that has not been battling with the police unions in the last 50 years? Name one. Name one. So the experience of this mayor in terms of some cops not liking him is nothing new.


    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has appealed for calm on all sides. And a number of big city police departments put their officers on alert, amid the new surge of tension.

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