NEW YORK (AP) — Weeks removed from an open revolt from his own police force that had officers turning their backs on him, Mayor Bill de Blasio now declares he has moved past the rift, striking a tenuous truce with a strategy to stay above the fray and public opinion that eventually soured on the cops’ behavior.
While he acknowledged much work remains to repair the hard feelings over the chokehold death of Eric Garner, de Blasio told The Associated Press he has regained the footing to move on to other matters, including an agenda he plans to outline in next week’s State of the City address.
Rank-and-file police had already been distrustful of him over his plans to reform such enforcement tactics as stop and frisk, and for his ties to the Rev. Al Sharpton, a fierce police critic.
On the very night of the slayings, police who gathered at the hospital where the slain officers were taken turned their backs on the mayor, a searing rebuke caught by television cameras.
—Empower carefully chosen surrogates to speak on the administration’s behalf, including Cardinal Timothy Dolan and Police Commissioner William Bratton, who allied himself closely with de Blasio but remained in good standing with the police unions.
The mayor was also heckled at a police graduation ceremony, and appeared tired and angry at his first news conference with reporters after the shooting.
While most of the protests were peaceful, some demonstrators called police murderers and compared the NYPD to Nazis and the Ku Klux Klan.
[…] the City Council announced $7.3 million to purchase new NYPD bulletproof vests, and de Blasio has dedicated additional funding to defend police officers from litigation.
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