BROOKLYN, NY– NYC Council Member Robert E. Cornegy, Jr. (D-36) released the following statement today following news of NYPD Commissioner James P. O’Neill’s decision to retire from the force:

“I commend Commissioner O’Neill for decades of honorable service to the City of New York. He has served with integrity and determination since joining the police force in the early 80’s, and led the Police Department well over the last three years.

Commissioner O’Neill was faced with many challenges during his tenure, including an increase in hate crimes, a police suicide crisis, and managing police and community relations.

But the Commissioner is leaving the Department in better shape than he found it. It is evident that neighborhood policing is having a positive impact, and that relations between the police and communities are improving. Local Precinct Council meetings, and events like “National Night Out” have made a tremendous difference. The NYPD has committed itself to fairness and justice, and is moving away from broken-windows policies of the past.

We are at a difficult point, but we must continue the work of fostering mutual respect and sensible relations between police and communities they serve.

I wish Mr. O’Neill the best in his future endeavors, and thank him for his service.”