New York City narcotics officers have been told to stop pursuing suspects who are older than 40, as younger suspects are more likely to carry and use firearms, according to a report from the New York Post.
The measure has been put in place by high-ranking police officials in order to address a jump in New York shootings. The Post reported that shootings are up 7 per cent this year over last year and up 12 per cent in the past month.
“A previous topic of discussion has been the need to target violent offenders who are 18 to 40 years of age. It has been well established that the individuals in this age demographic are responsible for the majority of violent crime,” Brian McCarthy, head of the city’s Narcotics Division, wrote in a department memo, adding that officers had been arresting too many above the age threshold.
Multiple police sources told the Post that officers were threatened with transfers and other discipline if they did not cut down on arrests of those older than 40.
“It’s amazing, but if you’re over 40, go out and start selling drugs because you get a freebie,” one police source said.
NYPD spokesman Stephen Davis said the policy is about pinpointing potential criminals, not giving freebies to older perps.
“(After) an analysis of the violence, we identified the core group of people committing the violence in certain areas was in the 18- to 35-year range . . . Since a fair amount of the violence is related to drug activity, our narcotics division was told to focus their efforts on those core areas and core groups.”
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