There are many past events that continue to affect the New York City Police Department (NYPD). Perhaps one of the most important is the NYPD's involvement in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. In the events surrounding those attacks, the NYPD lost 23 officers and that year was the deadliest in the NYPD's history. As a result, the NYPD created the Counter-Terrorism Bureau in 2002.
Many people would also say that the death of Eric Garner, an African-American man in Staten Island, in 2014, still affects community-police relations in New York City today. Garner was placed in a police chokehold and died, and an investigation revealed that he died as a result of the chokehold and ill health. The NYPD does not allow officers to place people in chokeholds. As a result of his death (in the context of the deaths of many African Americans across the country at the hands of the police), there were many public protests. While the officer who held Garner was not indicted, the Department of Justice opened an investigation into Garner's death. Many people regard Garner's death as symbolic of police brutality, particularly against people of color, in New York City. Perhaps there are other events in the history of the NYPD that you think still have an effect on the organization.