New York - Bloomberg On 'Coffee' Cop: Go Talk To NYPD
New York - The traffic agent accused of acting above the law -- using flashing red lights to buy coffee and abusing those he tickets -- is still on the job because Mayor Michael Bloomberg says it's not in his pay grade to do something.
CBS 2 HD went one on one with hizzonor on Tuesday.
Bloomberg has a rule: one reporter one question. But CBS 2 HD had lots of questions Tuesday about Traffic Agent Daniel Chu, and why he's still on duty.
CBS 2 HD: "Why is it acceptable to use your flashing lights to get a cup of coffee?"
Bloomberg: "It is not. It is clearly a violation of the rules. Next question."
CBS 2 HD: "Number two: why is it acceptable for a traffic agent to be abusive to people?"
Bloomberg: "It is not, clearly a violation of the rules. Number three."
CBS 2 HD: "Number three: why is he still on duty while this is being investigated?"
Bloomberg: "Because the police commissioner is responsible for the conduct of the people he supervises."
CBS 2 HD: "He violated the rules by using his flashing red lights."
Bloomberg: "Assuming you are correct, but we still have a system of justice in this country. We have to show somebody violated the rules."
Okay, Mr. Mayor. But try this one: in a video obtained by CBS 2 HD it shows that in his rush to get a caffeine fix, Officer Chu never bothered to turn off his emergency lights when he went inside to get coffee.
And as for abusing people, how about giving Councilman Dan Halloran a ticket for taking incriminating pictures of him.
"He says 'You're going to take pictures of me? Well, I'm going to write you a summons,'" Halloran said back on Friday.
Or what about ticketing mourners at Gleason's Funeral Home as the body was being moved.
"Traffic Agent Chu had a cigarette in his mouth, screaming at everybody," said pallbearer and former NYPD officer Tim Dillon. "He took his cigarette and flicked it towards the area of the family and indiscriminately started scanning cars."
CBS 2 HD: "It sends a bad message to people."
Bloomberg: "It does, but you can't have Ray Kelly stopping everything to go after one of 55,000 people on what is arguably something that is not life threatening."
Councilman Halloran said Agent Chu is still on duty because he writes a lot of tickets.
"Unfortunately, it's a dollar sign weighing the scales and that's just not what's supposed to happen," Halloran said.
The mayor suggested CBS 2 HD go to the Police Department for answers. We did, but have not yet received a response.