On Thursday, the NYPD allegedly sent out a directive ordering narcotics officers to make no arrests based on drug transactions that they witnessed, unless an undercover officer was present. According to the Post, this message "stunned drug cops," with once source saying, "They were told point-blank they couldn't make observation arrests without their undercovers." But it turns out it was all a big misunderstanding. Sheesh, haven't any of you cops played telephone?
The Post, sensing something was amiss, contacted NYPD spokesman Paul Browne, who clarified that "narcotics officers were not ordered to halt all observation arrests for drug transactions, but to reserve low-level observation arrests for efforts in building larger cases.” Very different than "don't arrest anyone without an undercover officer!"
As another NYPD source puts it, "They would have lost a lot of arrests." It's almost like the time Ray Kelly asked one of his subordinates for a "nice coffee."