During the summer of 2020 following the death of George Floyd, many New Yorkers took to the streets to protest his treatment at the hands of the police. Many found that the response from the NYPD was overly harsh, and now reports have confirmed that hundreds of cases of excessive force took place during the police response.
This builds on a history of police interaction with the residents of New York City, and it has become a significant financial burden for the city. These losses continue to mount as police conduct continues to impact the people.
In 2022, the total cost for police misconduct claims that the City of New York had to pay out was more than $121 million dollars. What is more shocking is that this is a nearly 25% increase over the total that was paid out in 2021. These are not coming from large financial settlements but from court judgments for smaller sums in a growing number of cases.
This trend of increasing costs continues to rise as claims from the 2020 protests are being settled or adjudicated, with over $7 million dollars already being paid out to victims of police brutality and excessive force.
All of these costs directly harm the taxpayers of New York City, and in a very tangible way are being paid for by the very people who are suffering from excessive force. As police encounters continue to be high, chances of police misconduct remain elevated, and the costs will continue to be passed along to New Yorkers.
So long as the NYPD continues to function without institutional reforms to better protect and serve the people of New York, the people will need to continue to hold them account for their actions through civil rights complaints.
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