News De Blasio dismisses police union warning on housing project patrols Mayor Bill de Blasio dismissed warnings from an NYPD labor union on Friday, Feb. 12, 2016 that a cop's conviction for the fatal shooting of Akai Gurley in a darkened housing-project stairwell, would impact patrols. Photo Credit: Yeong-Ung Yang By Matthew Chayes firstname.lastname@example.org @chayesmatthew Updated February 12, 2016 6:41 PM Print Share fbShare Tweet Email Mayor Bill de Blasio dismissed warnings from an NYPD labor union that a cop’s conviction Thursday for shooting an unarmed man in a darkened housing-project stairwell, would have a chilling effect on patrols. Speaking at an unrelated news conference, the mayor said that the NYPD would continue vertical patrols in the housing projects, in which police officers climb and descend building staircases to search for wrongdoing. “Vertical patrols are necessary as part of keeping our public housing residents safe,” de Blasio told reporters. Officer Peter Liang was found guilty Thursday of manslaughter and other crimes in the 2014 death of Akai Gurley. Liang, who has since been fired, shot Gurley at the Pink Houses while doing a vertical patrol. He and his partner argued over who would need to call in the shooting, and the two did not help resuscitate the man. The head of the rank-and-file officers’ union, Patrick Lynch of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, said that Liang’s conviction “absolutely will have a chilling effect on every New York City police officer wondering how is it we are supposed to do our job in this anti-police atmosphere.” De Blasio declined to say whether he thinks that Liang should serve prison time. “The most important thing I want to say isto the family of Akai Gurley,” de Blasio said. “I hope this brings them a sense of closure.” By Matthew Chayes email@example.com @chayesmatthew Matthew Chayes, a Newsday reporter since 2007, covers New York City Hall. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Comments We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.