UPDATE: Bloomberg responds after being blasted for 2015 stop-and-frisk comments
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Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg defended his record on criminal justice after audio leaked of his comments in a 2015 speech at the Aspen Institute justifying the stop-and-frisk policy he implemented as mayor. The comments have spurred criticism of Bloomberg’s record from the left and the right, including a direct shot from President Trump.
In the audio of the speech, given over a year after Bloomberg left office, Bloomberg can be heard saying that “you can just take the description” of male minorities age 16 to 25 and “Xerox it and pass it out to all the cops.” The audio was released on Monday by podcast host Benjamin Dixon, who supports Bernie Sanders.
The article goes on to state the following:
“Put the cops where the crime is, which means in minority neighborhoods,” Bloomberg said in the speech. Representatives for Bloomberg had blocked footage and audio of the speech from being released in 2015.
In a statement, Bloomberg said:
“I inherited the police practice of stop-and-frisk, and as part of our effort to stop gun violence it was overused. By the time I left office, I cut it back by 95%, but I should’ve done it faster and sooner.
“I regret that and I have apologized – and I have taken responsibility for taking too long to understand the impact it had on Black and Latino communities.”
Bloomberg had video of speech blocked.
— Benjamin Dixon (@BenjaminPDixon) February 10, 2020
President Donald J. Trump blasted Bloomberg, labeling him “racist” in a tweet, after the audio emerged.
The tweet was later deleted.
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