In Chapter 4 of the textbook NYPD Battles Crime: Innovative Strategies in Policing by Eli B. Silverman, do you see any issues that may need to be addressed?

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jameadows eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Chapter 4 details the policies of New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, who took office in 1994, and his police commissioner, William Bratton. Giuliani and Bratton "wanted to present to the public a new face: reverence for law and order" (page 69). The chapter examines a 1994 incident in which NYPD officers entered a Black Muslim mosque and the anger and controversy that resulted when Giuliani and Bratton defended the officers' decisions to enter the mosque. This aftermath was very different than that following a 1972 Harlem Mosque incident, which was treated by Mayor Lindsay with silence. Though the police commissioner handled the 1994 incident in a private manner that was very similar to the way in which the police brass handled the 1972 event, the public face of the police had changed by 1994. Giuliani had been elected in part because his predecessor, David Dinkins, was seen as soft on crime, and Giuliani turned his focus to preventive crime fighting. 

Many people argue that the NYPD's focus on "broken windows" (the idea that major crimes start with little infractions that need to be controlled) still affects policing in the city. Though Mayor Bill de Blasio, who has been in office since 2014, has tried to distance himself from the policing tactics of the Giuliani administration, many people still believe that the NYPD uses racial profiling and engages in brutality. For example, in 2014, an African-American man named Eric Garner died while an officer placed him in a chokehold while arresting him in Staten Island. Medical experts believe that Garner died from a combination of the chokehold, ill health, and compression of the chest. Therefore, many people believe that NYPD still uses the tactics practiced by the police during the Giuliani administration to fight low-level crime and that the NYPD engages in brutality that particularly targets people of color.