An NYPD officer seen on social media wearing a pro-Trump patch while in uniform has received “an initial discipline,” New York Police Department spokeswoman Detective Sophia Mason said.
The NYPD Sergeants Benevolent Association identified the officer as Sgt. Dana Martillo. CNN has made multiple attempts to reach Martillo for comment and has not yet heard back.
Police did not detail what “initial discipline” the officer received.
NYPD policy prohibits officers on duty or in uniform from “publicly expressing personal views and opinions concerning the merits of any political party or candidate for public office.”
On Saturday, Mason said the NYPD is aware of a video showing one of its officers “wearing a politically-oriented patch.”
The patch said “TRUMP” and “MAKE ENFORCEMENT GREAT AGAIN.”
Mason said an investigation is ongoing.
“We thank our partners at the NYPD for their swift action on the matter,” a spokesperson for New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said.
The president of the NYPD Sergeants Benevolent Association said in a statement Sunday that he does not believe Martillo should be disciplined for wearing a pro-Trump patch.
Ed Mullins, the union president, acknowledged that the NYPD does restrict political patches and symbols on police uniforms, but said “the rule has to be applied consistently.” Mullins referenced a time when the NYPD Chief of Department took a knee with protesters while on uniformed duty and argued that the act was political.
“When the Chief of the Department sends an overtly political message by taking a knee with protestors while in full uniform and on duty, it sends a clear message to our membership that political speech is permitted. I do not believe that discipline of Sergeant Martillo is warranted or necessary,” Mullins said.
“When the department imposes content-based discipline, it slides down a very slippery path toward monitoring all police officer speech, including police union speech and officers’ off-duty social media.”