NEW YORK (AP) — A former New York police union president who clashed with city officials over his explosive tweets and hard-line tactics is set to surrender on Wednesday to face criminal charges. linked to a raid last year at his home and his union office, two law enforcement officials said.
Ed Mullins resigned as head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association in October after the FBI raided the union’s Manhattan office and his Long Island home. He retired from the NYPD in November.
Information about the charges against Mullins was not immediately available. He is expected to be in federal court later Wednesday. Officials confirming his arrest were not authorized to speak publicly about an investigation and did so on condition of anonymity.
Messages seeking comment were left for the NYPD, the union and an attorney who has represented Mullins in the past. The FBI declined to comment.
The Sergeants Benevolent Association represents approximately 13,000 serving and retired NYPD sergeants and controls a $264 million retirement fund.
Mullins, a police sergeant seconded to full-time union work, faced departmental disciplinary proceedings last year for tweeting NYPD documents in 2020 regarding the arrest of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s daughter during protests over the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police.
Mullins, a police officer since 1982, became a sergeant, a rank above detective but below captain and lieutenant, in 1993 and was elected president of the sergeants union in 2002.
Under Mullins’ leadership, the union fought for better wages – with contracts resulting in 40% wage increases – and took a leading position in the anti-reform movement.
Although he was a full-time union leader, city law allowed Mullins to retain his position as sergeant and collect union and police department salaries. In 2020, Mullins earned more than $220,000 between the two, according to public records: $88,757 from the union and $133,195 from the NYPD.
Alongside Mullins’ periodic appearances on cable networks like Fox News and Newsmax — including one in which he was pictured in front of a QAnon mug — perhaps the union’s most powerful megaphone is his 45,000-follower Twitter account, which Mullins manages itself, often for fire effect.
In 2018, amid a series of incidents in which police were doused with water, Mullins suggested it was time for then-commissioner James O’Neill and department head Terence Monahan to “consider another profession” and tweeted that “O’KNEEL must go!”
O’Neill countered that Mullins was “a bit of a keyboard mobster” who rarely showed up for departmental duties.
Last year, Mullins came under fire for his tweets calling former city health commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot a “b——” and U.S. Representative Ritchie Torres a “first class bitch.”
Mullins was upset by reports that Barbot refused to give face masks to police at the start of the pandemic and angry at Torres’ calls for an investigation into a possible slowdown in police work in September 2020.
Torres, who is gay, denounced Mullins’ tweet as homophobic.