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[NY Focus] Here Are the New NYPD Gun Units’ Trainees. Many Have Histories of Excessive Force

In March, New York City Mayor Eric Adams fulfilled his promise to revive recently disbanded plainclothes police teams and deploy them to sweep up illegal guns. The move was among the most controversial elements of the mayor’s plan to tackle gun violence: The old teams, known as anti-crime units, were some of the New York City Police Department’s most infamous, accounting for around three in 10 NYPD killings between 2000 and 2018 despite making up roughly 6 percent of the force.

Adams and the NYPD have promised that the new units, known as the Neighborhood Safety Teams, are different. The new teams wear uniforms, and officials have touted training, robust oversight, and a discerning selection process for officers as evidence that they will not, in Adams’s words, perpetuate “the abuses that we witnessed in the past.” But the city has refused to release a list of officers assigned to the teams or information about their service histories, forcing the public to take officials’ word that they are only selecting the best of the best.

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