A New York City Department of Investigation (DOI) report found Mayor Bill de Blasio misused NYPD resources for "political" and "personal purposes" and an NYPD inspector "obstructed" the probe.
"DOI has concluded that the NYPD inspector in charge of the first family's security detail actively obstructed and sought to thwart this investigation, frustrating DOI's efforts to learn the full facts regarding these allegations," the 47-page report concluded, referencing Inspector Howard Redmond.
"DOI sought for approximately 19 months to obtain access to Inspector Redmond's text and encrypted messaging communications," the report read on page 18. "However, as discussed more fully below, the communications DOI ultimately received were deficient for, among other reasons, not including Inspector Redmond's communications from August 2018."
Among the allegations, de Blasio used police resources to help his daughter move from a Brooklyn apartment and never reimbursed the city for nearly $320,000 in presidential campaign travel, according to the report.
"DOI determined that the City of New York expended $319,794 for the members of Mayor de Blasio's security detail to travel on the Mayor’s presidential campaign trips," according to the report. "Mayor de Blasio has not reimbursed the city for these expenses, either personally or through his campaign.
"DOI also found that, during these campaign trips, EPU members occasionally transported Mayor de Blasio's campaign staffers while driving the mayor. Both reflect a use of NYPD resources for political purposes. In addition, DOI learned that, for approximately one year, the security detail has been conducting frequent security checks at houses owned by the mayor in Brooklyn, where neither he nor his family members currently reside."
Among the misuse of resources related to the use of his security detail, the Executive Protection Unit (EPU), helped Chiara de Blasio move to the mayor's Gracie Mansion in Manhattan. NYPD staffers reportedly helped carry furniture and an NYPD van was used to transport belongings in 2018.
"DOI's investigation found that at least one EPU member participated in moving Chiara's belongings — specifically, a futon — into and out of the sprinter van," the report read. "DOI's investigation was unable to determine whether NYPD resources assisted in the move at Mayor de Blasio's direct instruction. However, the provision of the sprinter van and the assistance of NYPD personnel in physically moving furniture was a misuse of NYPD resources for a personal benefit, whether it was requested or merely accepted."
Also, the DOI found, de Blasio's EPU was used to drive his son Dante de Blasio to and from Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, while neither the mayor nor the first lady, Chirlane McCray, were with him. Additionally, the EPU was used by Dante de Blasio to drive him around New York City without the mayor or first lady present, according to the report.
"Although it is the position of the NYPD Intelligence Bureau that both de Blasio children should have full-time protection, both children declined an assigned detail as adults," the report noted. "Since that time, in practice, Dante's use of NYPD resources was determined by his personal preferences and the availability of personnel, rather than any risk assessment."
Details in the report noted the NYPD Inspector Redmond destroyed a cell phone that was sought in the investigation.
"After Redmond was told he must surrender his NYPD phone for production to DOI and the date that he, instead, decided to turn the phone in for destruction under the guise of receiving an upgraded device," according to the report.
"Inspector Redmond sought to obstruct this investigation by refusing to provide his City-Hall-issued phone for production, deliberately seeking to destroy his NYPD-issued phone after he was informed that he must surrender it for production to DOI, and deleting all communications from both phones before they could be provided to DOI," the report continued on page 41. "These actions are a continuation of his conduct during his sworn DOI interview, in which he demonstrated a lack of candor, repeatedly claimed he could not recall the facts around matters under his direct supervision, and gave multiple answers that were not credible in light of the objective evidence and the sworn statements of other witnesses."
The report offered a number of recommendations upon its investigation, including those for the NYPD, the mayor's office, and the maintenance of records and communications in the future.
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