Cipher Safir

Forget About It! His Cop Record Is Worse Than His Capers

Leffler says that the nearly $149 million in overtime this year is an indicator of Safir's "failure to manage," as is the department's "ineptitude" in setting up the new 911 dispatch and backup computerized systems. That $156 million venture fell flat on its face in February, when a shutdown of the system contributed to the death of a 41-year-old heart attack victim. Together with many other members of the council, Leffler is particularly disturbed about the department's continuing resistance to replacing deskbound cops with civilians, claiming that the usage of far cheaper civilian employees is less than it was a decade ago.

Similarly, the council's finance staff recently released a devastating analysis of staffing patterns in the department, showing that only 58 percent of the force is assigned to precincts, with a 14 percent increase in uniformed executive management positions since April 1997, as well as a 15 percent jump in cops doing administrative work at headquarters. Safir is so mesmerized by his narcotics pushes that he's added 1146 cops to that unit, while even the detective bureaus lost as many as 90 officers. Contrary to the clear-cut language of the mergers with the transit and housing police, there are 2296 fewer cops patroling subways and projects than in 1995, Bratton's last full year.

While Safir and Giuliani have made national news highlighting their "lifesaving" DWI strategy, the NYPD's most recent Complaints & Arrests report shows that DWI arrests declined by 15.4 percent between 1995 and 1997. Drug arrests rose under Bratton, but dropped by 1997. With as much as Safir makes of weapons arrests, his 1997 total was 38.3 percent less than the record-breaking total in Dinkins's last year. That figure had started to fall under Bratton.

The caretaker commish: a poor imitation of Bratton
Fred W. Mcdarrah
The caretaker commish: a poor imitation of Bratton

A statue at every Blue Room press conference, Safir, who went out of his way to assail a Giuliani mayoral opponent in the 1997 election, has long seen his mission as more cheerleader than commander, more loyalist than leader. It's not just his Oscar and wedding tux, or his wife's fender bender, that are raising questions about his judgment. It's his service itself.

Research: Camila Gamboa, Coco McPherson, Kandea Mosley, Soo-Min Oh, Ron Zapata

Safir's Sad Stats

Effectiveness Measures: (1993)
(1997*or 1998**)

Indictments after felony arrests

38% 32% 27%**

Citywide 911 response time

8 min. 7.7 min. 9.8 min.**

Patrol strength/uniformed cops (fiscal year)

7697/34,641 8305/36,429 7733/40,210**

Weapons arrests

7103 4962 4382*

Overtime (fiscal year)

$112.3 mil. $96.2 mil. $148.9 mil.**

Drug felony arrests

38,671 43,190 41,314*

Civilian employees (fiscal year)

7414 6611 7009**
Safir data include housing and transit police; 1993 and 1995 data do not.

Citystate Quote:

"I read the polls and I understand political sentiment, and my strength is actually outside the City of New York." — Mayor Rudy Giuliani, on his chances of being elected senator, Newsday, April 19

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