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De Blasio Appoints Defender of 'Stop and Frisk' NYPD Commissioner

11:13 AM, Dec 5, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
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The New York Post reports that incoming New York City mayor Bill de Blasio will name Bill Bratton as the next NYPD commissioner.

Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio on Thursday named former NYPD commissioner Bill Bratton to replace Ray Kelly as the city’s top cop.

“Bill Bratton is a proven crime-fighter. He knows what it takes to keep a city safe, and make communities full partners in the mission. Together, we are going to preserve and deepen the historic gains we’ve made in public safety—gains Bill Bratton helped make possible,” de Blasio said in a statement.

Bratton served in the same position under Rudy Giuliani. And he was recently quoted as a defender of the supposedly controversial stop and frisk program -- a program de Blasio has wanted to roll back.

As David Feith of the Wall Street Journal quoted Bratton as saying last January:

"Stop-and-frisk is not something that you can stop. It is an absolutely basic tool of American policing," Mr. Bratton says. "It would be like asking a doctor to give an examination to you without using his stethoscope." Critics, he complains, "always leave out the middle term—stop, question and frisk. About 60 to 70 percent of the stops don't result in a frisk in New York." As for Judge Shira Scheindlin's recent ruling, he predicts a reversal "when it goes to the Supreme Court."

If stop-and-frisk makes it to the highest court in the land, the ruling might be more than a matter of academic interest for Mr. Bratton. He has been out of the police-chief game since 2009, when he retired after a successful seven-year stint in Los Angeles. But he has been speaking with more than one of the candidates who are positioning themselves for New York's mayoral election this November. Asked whether he might return for a second stint as the city's top cop, he offers praise for current Commissioner Ray Kelly and says little more than "I'll keep my options open."

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