3 Suspects in Custody After Water Bucket Attacks on NYPD Officers

3 Suspects in Custody After Water Bucket Attacks on NYPD Officers
City of New York Police Department Officer. (Mary Altaffer/AP)

Three men have been arrested in connection with pouring buckets of water over New York City police officers in Harlem and in Brooklyn.

Law enforcement sources told the New York Post on Wednesday, July 24 that three men were arrested and that one of the three is a gang member associated with a subset of the Crips.

Gang member Courtney “Killer Court” Thompson surrendered at the 73rd Precinct in Brownsville, Brooklyn on the morning of July 24. His charges include obstruction of governmental administration, criminal nuisance, criminal tampering, disorderly conduct, and harassment, the Post reported.

Thompson, 28, has been arrested more than 20 times for prior crimes and was on probation at the time of his arrest for a 2015 robbery, the Post reported. He has been on probation since 2018.

The other two suspects were arrested at the 28th Precinct in Harlem.

Isaiah Scott, a 23-year-old from Roebling, New Jersey, was not arrested for dousing buckets of water on the officers, but for pouring water on a woman and damaging her cell phone, sources told the Post.

Controversy Over NYPD Policy

Two videos showing people dousing New York police officers with water and hurling objects at them were uploaded to Twitter on Monday, July 22.

In one video, two officers are making an arrest while several people surround the officers and dump buckets of water on them. One person even launches a bucket at the back at the head of one officer, hitting him.

The second video shows two officers confronting a group of people before getting doused with buckets of water in Brownsville, Brooklyn.

The videos circulated widely on social media and caused an outcry, prompting a show of support for the NYPD from Vice President Mike Pence.

“This conduct is disgraceful. President @realDonaldTrump and I will ALWAYS stand with the brave men & women of our law enforcement who serve on the thin blue line every day. #StandWithNYPD” Pence wrote on Twitter.

NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan described what happened during a ceremony honoring veteran police officers.

“There was cops responding to a disorderly group, chased them away from a hydrant,” said Monahan, via the New York Post. “They dispersed, [and the cops] see a guy was wanted on a warrant. They know him because they know that neighborhood.”

“As they’re making that arrest, there were a couple guys who thought it was all right to throw water and a bucket at the cop,” Monahan added. “As usual, they scattered, but we have good information.”

Monahan also talked about the incident seen on video in Brooklyn.

“They were responding out there, dealing with an incident. As they’re walking away, someone thought it was all right to take a bucket of water and toss it over the top of a cop’s head,” Monahan said, via the Post. “That’s not all right.”

“This is an absolute disgrace and the inevitable result when too many politicians scapegoat police. These perpetrators should be tracked down and arrested,” former New York Governor George Pataki wrote on Twitter.

“Today its water thrown on them and buckets thrown at them and tomorrow it will be bricks and rocks,” said City Councilman Robert Holden at a press conference, reported NY1.

NYPD Response

The NYPD sent out a department-wide memo following the water-bucket assaults advising police officers on the options available to them in those situations.

The notice said officers are expected to tolerate higher levels of abusive speech without charges being administered. However, the same doesn’t apply when faced with behavior that may “cause risk of injury to themselves and the public, interfere with the performance of their duties, or tamper with or damage their uniform, equipment, or other department property.”

The Police Benevolent Association of the City of New York (NYC PBA), which represents active and retired police officers, said in a Twitter post that the city is not doing enough to protect police officers.

“Our anti-cop lawmakers have gotten their wish: the NYPD is now frozen. It’s not the fault of these police officers. It’s the end result of the torrent of bad policies and anti-police rhetoric that has been streaming out of City Hall and Albany for years now. We are approaching the point of no return. Disorder controls the streets, and our elected leaders refuse to allow us to take them back.

As police officers, we need to draw a line. In situations like this, we need to take action to protect ourselves and the public. The politicians may not care about the dangerous levels of chaos in our neighborhoods, but police officers and decent New Yorkers should not feel forced to suffer,” the association wrote on Twitter.

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