Federal monitor: NYPD Neighborhood Safety Teams acting unlawfully in stops
A new report released by a federal monitor reveals that NYPD Neighborhood Safety Teams are unlawfully stopping, frisking and searching people.
The federal court-appointed monitor called the report disappointing, which showed that nearly 95% of people encountered by these teams were Black or Hispanic. The report stated that there is an inadequate oversight of unlawful Neighborhood Safety Team encounters.
These teams, known in the NYPD as NSTs, were implemented in 2022 by Mayor Eric Adams to help get illegal guns off of the streets and combat gun violence in high-crime areas. NST officers wear modified uniforms and drive unmarked cars.
From April 1 to Oct. 33 in 2022, the monitor team randomly review NST-worn body cameras and stop reports. Of the 184 reviewed stops, 24% were deemed to be unlawful, meaning that NST officers did not have reasonable suspicion to stop and frisk.
The mayor’s office provided the following statement in response to News 12’s inquiry on the report:
"As we have previously shared with the monitor, we have serious concerns with the methodology used here. However, the facts are clear: Before Mayor Adams and NYPD Commissioner Sewell came into office, citywide shootings were up by double digits, but, following the creation of the Neighborhood Safety Teams in March 2022, shootings have consistently fallen and were down by double digits last year, and that trend has continued into 2023."
The report did note that some precincts have shown good compliance but mentioned that the NYPD should develop an improvement plan for the Neighborhood Safety Teams within the next 30 days.