NEW YORK (AP) — A federal appeals court block of a judge's ruling that found the New York Police Department's stop-and-frisk policy discriminated against minorities may be short lived, depending on the outcome of next week's mayoral election.
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said Thursday that the ruling by U.S. District Judge Shira A. Scheindlin would be on hold pending the outcome of an appeal by the city, a fight that could be dropped if Democrat Bill de Blasio, who is leading the polls by 39 points, has his way.
De Blasio has said he would drop objections to the decision, which had called for a monitor to oversee major changes to the police tactic.
His Republican rival, Joe Lhota, said the city's next mayor must push forward with the appeal.
"For the next 60 days, we don't want an outsider coming in who doesn't know anything about crime fighting, putting the lives of our police officers and the lives of the public on the line," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Friday on his weekly WOR Radio show.
Police officers have "had their names dragged through the mud over the past year and I think they deserve a lot better than that," Bloomberg said. "We want them to understand that we support them and we are in conformity with the requirements of the law."
The topic became an election flashpoint, resonating nationwide. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly was shouted down over the tactic by students during a speech at Brown University earlier in the week.
"This is indeed an important decision for all New Yorkers and for the men and women of the New York City police department who work very hard day in and day out to keep this city safe," Kelly said Thursday.