SEE IT! Is This Cop ‘Disoriented’ or Just Road-Raging Through Flushing?

For some reason, the NYPD has let one of its own crazy drivers off the hook.

Video still from Youtube
Video still from Youtube

An NYPD officer is incredibly facing no consequences from his attempt on Saturday to bash his way through a gridlocked street in Flushing, crashing into two cars and sending himself to the hospital — and it was all caught on a video worthy of the Keystone Kops.

The excitement started at around 3:20 p.m. on Saturday, near the intersection of 37th Avenue and Main Street when the unidentified NYPD traffic supervisor was behind the wheel of a department car struck behind one car and in front of another. It is unclear what interaction, if any, the officer had with the car in front of him, but the video below picks up the timeline:

First, after waiting about 30 seconds, the cop drives his vehicle into the back of the car in front of him, nudging it up slightly. Next, the cop drives backwards at a high rate of speed into the car behind him, creating more space for what is to come next: an even-faster sprint towards the front car, with the cop using his police vehicle as a battering ram to get the car out of his way. The video then cuts to reveal significant damage to the squad car.

But in classic, “Nothing to see here” fashion, the NYPD declined to reveal key details, saying only that the driver “appeared disorientated [sic] and was transported by EMS to an area hospital for further medical evaluation.” NYPD Sergeant Jessica McRorie added that the collision “remains under internal review.”

In other words, no charges have been filed. McRorie declined to answer further questions.

It is unclear if the driver was drunk, but NYPD personnel have a track record of dangerous inebriated driving, as Streetsblog has documented. Most recently, two off-duty NYPD officers were arrested for fleeing the scene of collisions they had caused while under the influence of alcohol —in the span of just two days.

And Streetsblog has also documented that close to 40 percent of cars parked in NYPD-only spaces or with NYPD-issued placards have multiple moving violations — a rate that’s double the general public.

The YouTube video of the crash prompted New Yorkers to erupt on Twitter:

  • Joe R.

    Exhibit A for getting cops out of patrol cars. Seriously, what was the rush here? There was apparently no emergency, or the sirens would have been on. Since he/she was in a patrol car, not his/her personal vehicle, they were being paid by the hour for whatever time was spent sitting in traffic. Low blood sugar maybe? Just had to rush to get that next donut.

  • com63

    I can’t even figure out what was going on. Why was the car in fronts stopped in the first place. I wonder if something was going on further down the street. Based on the reactions of the pedestrians, there probably wasn’t any honking or other argument going on before the collision.

  • I strongly suspect that this officer was suffering from an acute case of “Get out of my way, you goddamn [anti-Chinese racial slur]!”

  • Joe R.

    I can’t make heads or tails of this, either. If I had to guess, I would say the car in front was driving too slowly, the cop honked at it, and out of spite the driver decided to just stop dead. The cop then tried to solve the situation the only way most cops know how, namely with brute force.

  • Rider

    Do you know why Flushing was gridlocked even worse than usual on Saturday? Because both the 7 train and the Roosevelt Avenue bridge were closed between Willets Point and Main Street for construction. The MTA ran shuttle buses in a loop over Northern Boulevard, Union Avenue, Roosevelt, and College Point, all of which got hopelessly gridlocked from all the extra traffic, as did Main and all of the side streets.

    NOTHING was moving. It was as bad as Manhattan during the UN General Assembly. Emergency vehicles were at an utter standstill, sirens blaring.

    In any other major world city, the DOT would have imposed traffic and parking restrictions and designated bus lanes to avert this chaos. But, typically, ours lifted not a finger.

    Not excusing the cop’s behavior, but as I walked around Saturday afternoon and witnessed the atmosphere created by DOT’s utter failure to manage the streets, I could certainly see how the conditions might induce road rage.

  • ddartley

    The writing out of speculation about what was on the driver’s mind isn’t helpful, but it’s undeniable that NYPD “Traffic Enforcement” would do a hell of a lot more good in terms of traffic management if it didn’t add its own vehicles to the mix. (Somewhat true for NYPD generally too…)

  • Whenever you see these people, RUN!!! I think it’d be funny if people started panic-running away at the mere sight of an NYPD traffic cop. RUN FOR YOUR LIVES! I’m going to have some fun with this.

  • Every traffic cop I see now is going to get a big loud “THANK YOU FOR NOT ROAD RAGING!”

  • William Lawson

    This stuff about the cop being disoriented and being taken for a psych evaluation is pure unadulterated NYPD horseshit and quite frankly I’ve about had enough of their never ending bare-faced lies. We should start jailing any NYPD cop or spokesperson who intentionally feeds the media untruths like this. There was no psych evaluation – they’re simply refusing to act upon one of their members who has demonstrated him or herself to be a violent bully in the course of doing their work, and this is why the ranks of the NYPD will always be chock full of criminals, psychopaths, sadists, bullies and liars. They will never admit when they’re wrong and they will always defend any rogue cop, no matter how criminal or psychotic, simply by virtue of the fact that he’s “one of them.” Meanwhile, virtually nobody in this city outside of Staten Island really respects the NYPD.

  • Vooch

    Agreed, in most of NYC, the police were perfectly able to manage without driving for nearly a century.

    Somehow, magically in the 1950s a patrol officer was able to walk from his precient station to his patrol station.

    Check out a map of precints in Manhattan below 72nd street. These are tiny geographic areas. Its FASTER to walk.

  • NYPD has no standards whatsoever and will close ranks to protect even some lunatic, unhinged lowly traffic cop. I understand closing ranks but to do it so indiscriminately, it’s going to bite NYPD in the ass sooner or later.

  • kevd

    Can NYPD Traffic cops not write a big ass ticket for illegal double parking and block a whole street?
    Cause that’s what should have happened.

  • com63

    Maybe driver in front didn’t realize it was a cop behind. Seems like lights and sirens would have been a better (but still inappropriate) solution.

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