Get ready for a long, hot … and bloody summer, New York.
The city’s top cop on Monday warned residents to get used to increased shootings — as Mayor Bill de Blasio again blamed the courts for the deadly uptick and called on citizens to fight crime.
“It’s going to take some time to address the significant uptick in violence that we see,” NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea said.
Shea called it “absolutely unacceptable” that there were 15 shootings “just on Sunday” and said police brass were “putting significant resources into the areas where we know there is ongoing gang violence occurring.”
De Blasio said a key factor in the surging lawlessness was the “massive disruption” of the court system due to the coronavirus crisis.
“There’s a huge backlog when it comes to cases involving violent crime,” he said.
“I’ve sent this letter this morning to the chief judge and the five [district attorneys] saying, ‘Let’s work together.’”
The mayor also said that “the best way to achieve lasting safety is with communities and NYPD working together.”
“The outpouring of community involvement and support has been striking,” he added.
The state Office of Court Administration has “been working to reestablish full court operations, including jury trials,” spokesman Lucian Chalfen said.
“While New York City still does not allow indoor dining, the mayor blithely asks us to call in thousands of people a week citywide for jury duty,” Chalfen said.
“Clearly, he has absolutely no understanding of how the criminal justice process works.
A spokeswoman for Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance Jr. also said, “Our office never stopped aggressively prosecuting violent crime.”
“Courts have remained open for arraignments, and preliminary hearings have allowed us to meet our statutory obligations in the absence of a sitting Grand Jury,” spokeswoman Emily Tuttle said.
“Our dedicated staff members, who have been working non-stop, will continue to collaborate with our colleagues at OCA to ensure the court system keeps running.”
Additional reporting by Rebecca Rosenberg
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