New York City police union boss targeted by feds for corruption was longtime ‘thorn’ in City Hall’s side

Phrase of Ed Mullins’ sudden resignation as head of one in every of New York Metropolis’s highly effective police unions was nonetheless circulating by means of the town when Mayor Invoice de Blasio fired off a bitter parting shot.

“Ed Mullins dishonored his uniform, his metropolis and his union extra occasions than I can depend,” de Blasio tweeted simply after Mullins resigned Tuesday as head of the Sergeants Benevolent Affiliation, or SBA, amid a federal corruption investigation. “It was only a matter of time earlier than his limitless hatred would meet up with him. That day has come.”

That de Blasio would publicly kick Mullins whereas he was down speaks volumes concerning the fraught relationship the mayor had with the outspoken and polarizing chief of a union that represents 13,000 energetic and retired New York Metropolis police sergeants and controls a $264 million retirement fund.

However de Blasio just isn’t the one New York Metropolis chief who had issues with Mullins.

Throughout the 20 or so years that Mullins headed the SBA, he managed to antagonize de Blasio’s predecessors, in addition to New York Metropolis Police Division management, together with his strident opposition to nearly any police reform, in addition to his bare-knuckle and really private public assaults on metropolis leaders and different critics.

“He has been a thorn within the aspect of 4 commissioners,” William Bratton, who served because the police commissioner beneath de Blasio and former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, instructed New York Journal final yr. “He has all the time been a ache within the ass.”

Utilizing the union’s Twitter account, Mullins ripped de Blasio’s daughter as a “rioting anarchist” after she was arrested final yr for collaborating in a protest towards police violence following the killing of George Floyd whereas within the custody of Minneapolis police. He additionally referred to as former New York Metropolis Well being Commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot a “bitch” with “blood on her fingers” after she allegedly argued with NYPD management over masks distribution early on within the pandemic.

“Ed Mullins is basically the Donald Trump of New York Metropolis politics,” U.S. Rep. Ritchie Torres, D-N.Y., who was born and raised within the Bronx borough, instructed MSNBC’s Chris Hayes the identical day Mullins stepped down.

Mullins had referred to as Torres a “firstclass whore” in a since-deleted tweet final yr after the lawmaker referred to as for an investigation into an alleged police work slowdown.

Torres, who’s homosexual, denounced Mullins’ tweet as homophobic.

“He has a long-standing sample of embracing conspiracy theories, trafficking in racism and sexism and homophobia,” Torres stated of Mullins. “He’s performed it with impunity.”

In a subsequent assertion, Torres’ spokesperson, Raymond Rodriguez, stated Mullins “has an extended historical past of bigotry that permeated your complete union he led.”

“For probably the most half, the legislation enforcement unions oppose any form of oversight or accountability measures. That’s the way in which they function.”

However Stephen Nasta, a retired NYPD inspector who now lectures on the John Jay Faculty of Prison Justice in New York Metropolis and has met Mullins a number of occasions, stated the ex-union boss is not any bigot. He recalled how Mullins made some extent of reaching out to Black ministers as a part of a crime-fighting effort.

“I don’t purchase that he’s not for minorities,” Nasta stated. “He’s for serving to crime victims no matter shade they’re.”

Former NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill referred to as Mullins a “keyboard gangster” after the union boss ripped him in 2018 for not cracking down exhausting on individuals who had been dousing law enforcement officials with water and tweeted “O’KNEEL should go!”

The SBA head additionally stated then-Chief of Division Terence Monahan ought to “think about one other career.”

Ed Mullins arrives at New York Metropolis police headquarters on Sept. 8.Luiz C. Ribeiro / New York Every day Information/TNS through Getty Pictures file

When he wasn’t lashing out over the web, Mullins used his frequent appearances on conservative information shops akin to Fox Information and Newsmax to assault metropolis leaders.

Throughout a July 2020 interview with Fox Information’ Neil Cavuto, a mug with the imagery of QAnon, the Trump-supporting group that has unfold dozens of bogus conspiracies, together with some which have resulted in violence, could possibly be seen within the background.

Mullins was additionally a frequent visitor on right-wing radio and in 2019, he upset the household of Tessa Majors, a Barnard Faculty pupil who was slain, by suggesting — with no proof — that she was in Morningside Park to purchase marijuana when she was killed.

Investigators later decided Majors had been fatally stabbed throughout an tried theft. Mullins later apologized and insisted his feedback “have been taken out context.”

Mullins resigned from the union simply hours after the FBI raided the SBA headquarters in decrease Manhattan and his residence in Port Washington, Lengthy Island, on Tuesday as a part of the federal corruption investigation. He didn’t reply to NBC Information’ electronic mail looking for remark concerning the developments or his management of the fifth largest police union within the nation.

“Ed won’t be making any statements,” SBA lawyer Andrew Quinn stated in an electronic mail.

The SBA’s bylaws require Mullins to proceed working as a police sergeant and he was paid $133,195 by the town final yr, although his full-time job was operating the SBA, which pays him an extra wage. The union paid Mullins $88,757 in 2019, based on the SBA’s most up-to-date paperwork, which listed him as a trustee.

He has been positioned on modified obligation and stripped of his badge and gun whereas the FBI and the general public corruption unit of the U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace for the Southern District of New York examine.

Federal investigators haven’t offered any particulars concerning the investigation. However in a press release confirming that Mullins was stepping down, the SBA stated that “it’s clear that President Mullins is outwardly the goal of a federal investigation.”

Mullins was in a position to preserve a good grip on the SBA as a result of beneath his management, the union efficiently negotiated contracts with the town that resulted in 40 % wage will increase.

He’s additionally within the midst of an NYPD disciplinary continuing for violating departmental pointers by tweeting out Chiara de Blasio’s mugshot and private particulars after she was arrested in Might 2020.

The son of a longshoreman and a stay-at-home mother, Mullins and his three siblings have been raised in Greenwich Village and he joined the NYPD in 1982, based on his official biography.

He was elected president of the SBA in 2002. And, together with Police Benevolent Affiliation President Patrick Lynch, whose group represents about 24,000 of the NYPD’s 36,000 officers, they turned the general public faces of police opposition to reform of the division by Metropolis Corridor.

They have been additionally outspoken supporters of Trump, with each unions endorsing him within the 2020 presidential election.

Mullins staked out “a reactionary place” on social media, stated Wilbur Chapman, who was the NYPD’s deputy commissioner of coaching when he retired in 2011.

“There’s a number of tribalism occurring in society proper now and the police division is a mirrored image of society,” he stated. “Once I was developing, there wasn’t the identical political activism you see now in policing. Individuals had their political views, however they saved them to themselves.”

Chapman stated Mullins first landed on his radar when he observed that the SBA’s first vice-president was attending sergeant promotion ceremonies as a substitute of him.

It’s customary for the heads of the police unions to attend these sorts of ceremonies, Chapman stated, however from 2007 to 2011, Mullins was typically a no-show “due to his variations with then-Police Commissioner (Ray) Kelly.”

“He was conspicuously lacking,” Chapman stated.

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