The Drum Major Institute, the think tank where the mayor’s new policy aide, Andrea Batista Schlesinger, once worked, has a chart showing the size of police forces and the number of murders in major American cities.
DMI’s argument: “[T]here is no clear relationship between the number of officers on the street and levels of reported crime.”
They argue against a recent call in the New York Post for more funding for the NYPD (read: take money away from other parts of the city budget).
DMI: “[B]efore we go about gutting other vital New York City services, it is worth considering the lack of a relationship between the size of a city’s police force and a city’s crime rate. We must also consider that crime is still near historically low levels. Crime is down 30 percent from 2001 levels, when the NYPD headcount was higher by several thousand officers.”
Bloomberg has taken a different posture, muttering aloud that the police cutbacks may have contributed to the recent spike in crimes here.