Police Commissioner Bill Bratton, speaking yesterday to business leaders at the Waldorf-Astoria, assured that he will not let New York City crumble under our new man-of-the-people leader. Citing his continued belief in the “broken windows” theory of policing, Bratton promised, “We will be focusing on ensuring that aggressive begging and squeegee pests, all those activities that create fear and destroy neighborhoods, graffiti, all those seemingly minor things that were so much in evidence in the ’80s and early ’90s here, don’t have the chance to come back.” There go Bill de Blasio’s campaign promises!
Bratton also said that stop-and-frisk, which is down dramatically, will still be “a very basic tool” used by the NYPD, “but it will be done at all times constitutionally, it will be done at all times respectfully, it will be done at all times compassionately.”
To make sure things aren’t getting too pre-Giuliani, Bratton said he and “broken windows” criminologist George Kelling “are going to go out, kind of like old times for us, riding the rails and getting a sense. Has the shelter-resistant population attempted to get back into any of these areas?” he said. “If so, how do we work with the various advocate groups to get them into an environment where they can be served?” He’ll be heartened to know that while taking the subway at night these days, drunken college kids are more likely to be found than “aggressive” homeless people.