New York police officers turned their backs on New York Mayor Bill de Blasio when he walked into the police press conference regarding the tragic deaths of NYPD officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu over the weekend.


When de Blasio walked through the hallway at Woodhull Hospital Saturday evening, the turned backs of police officers flanked him on either side. The show of contempt came in light of the shooting deaths of Ramos and Liu, which some believe came as a direct result of the protests against police brutality towards people of color – and de Blasio’s apparent sympathy with the activists.

Commissioner Bill Bratton believes that de Blasio may have lost the trust of some police officers, but that that is no excuse for the show of disrespect at the press conference.

“I think he has lost it with some officers,” Bratton said on NBC’s Today show. “I was at the hospital when that event occurred….I don’t support that particular activity, I don’t think it was appropriate, particularly in that setting, but it’s reflective of the anger of some of them.”

Bratton added, “I don’t know that an apology [from de Blasio] is necessary. One of the things, a concern at the moment, is this issue is really starting to go down partisan lines, Republican-Democrat. This is something that should be bringing us all together, not taking us apart.”

Following the Eric Garner grand jury decision in New York City, tensions in the city rose. De Blasio took the position of understanding the frustration, but in no way condoned the violence against members of law enforcement.

The night of the police murders, de Blasio said, “When a police officer is murdered, it tears at the foundation of our society. It is an attack on all of us. It’s an attack on everything we hold dear. We depend on our police to protect us against forces of criminality and evil.”