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NYPD Commissioner William Bratton's approval rating drops after Eric Garner death, poll finds

Police Commissioner William J. Bratton at police headquarters

Police Commissioner William J. Bratton at police headquarters in Manhattan on Monday, July 7, 2014. Photo Credit: Agaton Strom

NYPD Commissioner William Bratton's job approval rating has dropped in the wake of the police-involved death of Eric Garner.

A Quinnipiac University poll Tuesday showed 48 percent of New York City voters approve of Bratton, compared to 57 percent in a June 12 survey. Bratton is polling lower than Ray Kelly at any point in his 12 years as commissioner, according to Quinnipiac.

"The chokehold case has cut Bratton's numbers," assistant poll director Maurice Carroll said. "The Staten Island killing focused attention on the cops and focused attention on the commissioner and focused attention negatively."

Garner, 43, of Staten Island, died July 17 after a police officer held him in a banned chokehold. The case spurred thousands of demonstrators against police violence to peacefully march in Staten Island this past Saturday.

Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,021 New York City voters via landline and cellphone between Aug. 20 and Monday. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

Tuesday's poll showed 20 percent of voters believe the Rev. Al Sharpton, who led Saturday's march, is the most important black leader in New York City. President Barack Obama garnered 5 percent and Rep. Charles Rangel (D-Manhattan/Bronx) received 3 percent. Forty-nine percent of voters view Sharpton as a positive force versus 40 percent who say he is a negative one.

Mayor Bill de Blasio's ratings remain steady, compared to June. He has a 50 percent job approval rating, with 32 percent of voters disapproving. His support is highest among black voters, 67 percent of whom approve of him as chief executive.

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