Feds investigating NYPD’s Special Victims Division in New York, DOJ says


Federal prosecutors have launched an investigation into the NYPD’s Special Victims Division to determine whether the embattled sex crimes unit engaged in a ‘pattern or practice’ of sexist policing, it has been reported. revealed Thursday.

Investigators will investigate reported systemic issues with the division of the nation’s largest police force that have spanned more than a decade, the Justice Department said in a news release.

“The Department has received information alleging shortcomings at the SVD that have persisted for more than a decade, depriving survivors and the public of the prompt, thorough, and effective investigations necessary to protect public safety,” officials said.

“These shortcomings would include failing to complete basic investigative steps and instead shaming and abusing survivors and re-traumatizing them during investigations,” they added.

Mayor Eric Adams and NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell promised to cooperate with federal authorities in their investigation.
Daniel William McKnight
Breon Peace, the US Attorney at EDNY, claimed that the NYPD's Special Victims Division suffered from "historical issues."
Breon Peace, the EDNY’s U.S. Attorney, claimed the NYPD’s Special Victims Division suffered from “historical issues.”
AP Photo/John Minchillo
The NYPD Special Victims Division office in East Village, Manhattan.
The NYPD Special Victims Division office in East Village, Manhattan.
Paul Martinca

The investigation will be conducted jointly by investigators from the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, as well as the Special Litigation Section of the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division.

“Victims of sex crimes deserve the same rigorous and impartial investigations into their cases that the NYPD affords to other categories of crimes,” SDNY U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said in a statement.

“Over the past few months, we have learned information from a variety of sources about historical matters about how the Special Victims Division conducted its investigations for many years,” added Breon Peace, U.S. Attorney EDNY.

Sonia Ossorio, president of the National Organization for Women, spoke out against alleged abuse in the NYPD's Special Victims Division.
Sonia Ossorio, president of the National Organization for Women, spoke out against alleged abuse in the NYPD’s Special Victims Division.
Taidgh Baron
Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, speaks during a press conference at the Department of Justice, Tuesday, May 24, 2022, on the Corrupt Practices Act at the foreign and market manipulation issues.
Damian Williams, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, claimed the NYPD’s Special Victims Division failed to conduct “impartial investigations.”
AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster
Women's rights activists previously called on then-Mayor Bill de Blasio to reform the NYPD's Special Victims Division on March 2, 2020.
Women’s rights activists previously called on then-Mayor Bill de Blasio to reform the NYPD’s Special Victims Division on March 2, 2020.
Taidgh Baron

The NYPD did not immediately respond to request for comment, but federal authorities said they alerted Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell and Mayor Eric Adams, who pledged to cooperate with the investigation.

New York Post

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