Donovan Richards

William Alatriste for the City Council

Donovan Richards, a Queens Councilmember who chairs the committee on Public Safety.

The de Blasio administration will soon issue its decision on Officer Daniel Pantaleo, whose takedown of Eric Garner caused the Staten Island man’s death just over five years ago. A Staten Island grand jury decided not to indict Pantaleo in late 2014. The Department of Justice said recently it would not press civil-rights charges against him. An internal NYPD trial has concluded. Now it’s up to Police Commission James O’Neill to decide whether to fire the 34-year-old cop. Mayor de Blasio, who ran in 2013 on a platform of police reform and, as a presidential candidate, has talked again about the danger his son might face in an encounter with law enforcement, says the officer’s fate rests with the commissioner.

Councilmember Donovan Richards, chair of the committee on public safety, believes the mayor could play a more decisive role than he has suggested, and could have played it much sooner. On WBAIs Max & Murphy Show on Wednesday, he talked about the changes that New York City has made to policing since 2014 and what he believes still needs improvement.

Hear our conversation below or listen to the full show, which includes an interview with Councilmember Justin Brannan about his new Committee on Resiliency and Waterfronts.

Councilmember Donovan Richards on Policing


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