Members of the NYPD’s elite Strategic Response Group — about 700 highly trained, heavily armed cops who respond to terrorism, mass protests and gun violence — say their bosses are demanding they write more “BS” tickets.
The pressure to meet secret “quotas” — a practice the NYPD denies — will diminish public safety, whistleblowers told The Post.
“We feel that we’re not as sharp on our tactics, because they are pulling us away from tactical training to grab numbers,” one said.
“Some officers don’t feel confident to go into active shooter situations anymore. It should be of great public concern, because we are the quick reaction force that’s going to neutralize and mitigate the threat from an active shooter. We can’t do that if the guns are off the street due to arrest processing.”
SRG officers who don’t meet ticket “quotas” — which bosses demand at roll call but don’t put in writing — are given undesirable shifts and denied overtime, several have complained to the Internal Affairs Bureau.
“The old school mentality of crushing cops who ‘don’t do enough’ is alive and well,” said one who filed a complaint.
The NYPD denied the accusations.
“Quotas are strictly prohibited in the NYPD. The department does not and will not use quotas for enforcement activity in the Strategic Response Group or any other unit or assignment,” Sgt. Jessica McRorie said.
General training for SRG members has increased from four to six days a year, she added.
But officers said additional refresher training has been slashed.
“If the officers aren’t confident in their training, they’ll be ineffective when the time comes for them to perform,” one said.
Each borough has an SRG squad, but the officers — who tote M4 assault rifles — respond to shootings, major crimes and hot spots citywide.
Members raced to the West Side Highway last Oct. 31, when a Uzbekistan immigrant rammed a rental truck onto a bike path, killing eight; to Bronx-Lebanon Hospital on July 2, 2017, when a disgruntled doctor shot seven people, killing a fellow physician before himself; and to Chelsea on Sept. 17, 2016, when a pressure-cooker bomb planted by an Afghani immigrant who supported ISIS exploded on West 23rd Street, injuring dozens.
Counter-terror assignments, large demonstrations, major crimes and missing children searches take up 90 percent of their work, with patrol in high-crime areas roughly 10 percent, SRG members say.
That leaves scant time to make arrests or write revenue-generating summonses for traffic infractions, public urination, open containers of alcohol, and other violations.
NYPD spokesperson Peter Donald disagreed: “SRG deploys to neighborhoods where crime still persists. The unit is expected to make those communities safer, by preventing crime and arresting those who commit violence.”
Under SRG Inspector John D’Adamo, the unit’s top cop, “the only thing that matters is [arrest and summons] activity,” an SRG cop charged.
D’Adamo has “brought in disciplinarians as commanding officers to dole out punishments to officers who don’t fall in line. He calls them his ‘cop crushers.’”
Roy Richter, president of the NYPD Captains Endowment Association, disputed the claim. “There are no enforcement goals, and it is not a numbers-driven command,” he said.
Last spring, Police Commissioner James O’Neill issued an in-house warning that supervisors caught enforcing quotas would face discipline.
“The bosses have realized this, and now don’t give a number,” the SRG member said. “They just punish cops until enough work is done to satisfy them.”
In one SRG command, a lieutenant “huddles us up after roll call and speaks really low at least two times per week,” an anonymous complaint to internal affairs states.
“He asked for one arrest and three summonses a month,” the complaint states, and warned of consequences for officers who “don’t bring in the numbers.”
Dozens of SRG officers have had their performance evaluations lowered for failure to comply, and many were transferred to worse shifts, an insider said.
“Everyone knows that to get promoted past the rank of captain, you have to impress the higher-ups,” the source said. “The easiest way to do that is to make your cops write and collar more than others.”