A deal with the City Council to restrict how the NYPD searches a civilian without legal basis could take “upwards of almost a year,” Police Commissioner William Bratton said Wednesday morning.
In scuttling legislation this month with majority support to require the NYPD to inform a person when he may refuse a search, council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito said the deal would change the NYPD quicker than any law could. Mayor Bill de Blasio boasted, “these changes will happen now.” The law would have required the changes within 90 days of enactment.
Under the terms of the deal, NYPD officers who want a person to consent to a voluntary search must seek permission using yes or no questions and walk away if refused.
“It will take a period of time to write those policies, to provide the training, so the timing is over a period of time, upwards of almost a year before many of those issues are put into place,” Bratton said Wednesday.
The deal also requires police to hand out business cards upon request, among other rules.
Later Wednesday, the NYPD clarified that Bratton expected the changes to the search rules would be done within nine months, the timeline the speaker had earlier given.
Pressed to say how a police officer would be punished for failing to obey the new rules, Bratton demurred.
“There is no hard and fast rule, what a punishment would be for a violation,” he said. “My expectation is the officers will adhere to the policy, so the punishment should not be necessary to even have to consider at this stage.”