Bratton announces change in policing tactics

Bratton defended so-called broken windows policing, but will alter how individuals are penalized.

Bratton defended so-called broken windows policing, but will alter how individuals are penalized. (4/30/15)

NEW YORK - The city's top cop is making policing changes that he hopes will improve the relationship between officers and the communities they serve. 

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton spoke at the police academy in Queens Thursday, saying he still believes in so-called broken windows or quality of life policing. He says tackling those small crimes has helped make the city safer, but he plans on changing the process. 

Bratton explained to a group of NYPD top brass that officers will continue using the policing tactic of stopping, asking for identification and warrant checking individuals. However, he plans to implement alternatives on how those individuals are penalized, such as issuing a warning or a ticket instead of an arrest if it's unnecessary. 

The commissioner admitted that the current penalty system can be cumbersome and unfair. Currently, quality of life arrests can end up as criminal court summonses and misdemeanor charges. 

Bratton added that he has been working with Mayor Bill de Blasio and other elected officials for the past 16 months on a new policy. They plan to formally and publicly announce a more comprehensive plan sometime in May. 

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