Bronx Cop Joseph Spina Loses Vacation Time for Mayor de Blasio Comments
Bronx Cop Loses Vacation Time for Mayor de Blasio Comments
New York City, NY.– NYPD Officer Joseph Spina has been docked 8 of his 10 vacation days, according to the Daily News, for comments he made while writing a summons. A video surfaced after the traffic stop, in which officer Spina blames New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio for having to write summons for traffic violations.
Mayor de Blasio launched a project dubbed Vision Zero in 2014. The mayor’s new traffic safety enforcement policy was meant to decrease traffic fatalities and lower pedestrian death by vehicle incidents in the city. The initiative included adding traffic cameras, increasing criminal charges against violators and lowering speed limits in certain areas to as low as 25 mph.
Many critics have taken to City Hall and in November rallied in hopes of the mayor hearing their pleas for safer streets. They argue however that its infrastructure that needs changed, not only police enforcement. Executive Director of Transportation Alternatives, Paul Steely White said, “Every one of those tragedies is preventable. Most of these New Yorkers are dying on streets that the mayor has identified as deadly. These are deadly by design streets that do not have safe crosswalks, that do not even have safe sidewalks.”
Mayor de Blasio has charged the NYPD with strict enforcement and officer Spina, shared his opinion of it during a traffic stop back in April of 2016, which was filmed and promptly put on the internet.
“Mayor de Blasio wants us to give out summonses, OK? All right?” Spina said to the driver receiving the summons. “I don’t know if you voted for him or not. I don’t live in the city. I wouldn’t have voted for him because this is what he wants. He wants us to give out summonses.”
The driver responded with, “I feel you, this is a hard job.”
Officer Spina was suspended pending an investigation by the Precinct Commander and now we have learned was docked 8 of his 10 vacation days as a result of his comments. One police source noted that the sharing of his personal opinion on a public policy was against protocol and led to his reprimand.
Although de Blasio’s office stands by the traffic enforcement program, New Yorkers are still wondering why he turned down $305 million dollars in requested upgrades to the city streets and sidewalks. “We’re not so sure the mayor is listening anymore,” White said. As of November, traffic deaths were up 5%.
Do you think officer Spina’s comments were out of line? Let us know in the comments.