NYPD's Chief of Patrol Fausto Pichardo resigns over rift with de Blasio

October 14, 2020 

The NYPD chief responsible for tens of thousands of uniformed patrol officers abruptly resigned Tuesday -- frustrated by needling micromanagement from Mayor de Blasio, according to police sources.


NYPD Chief of Patrol Fausto Pichardo hit his breaking point after working long hours covering protests against state-imposed coronavirus lockdowns in Borough Park last week -- only to be harangued by the mayor afterward, the sources said.

When he got home from one of the shifts, Pichardo missed a call from Mayor de Blasio -- who summoned him to City Hall on Friday to chew him out for the oversight, sources said.

Hizzoner "routinely loses his s--t about missed phone calls," another source added.

Then, on Saturday night, the mayor's office texted Pichardo several times about a house party in the Bronx, a law enforcement source said, explaining that dealing with such an issue should fall to the precinct's commander.

"This is nothing but inappropriate meddling from a person who doesn't know anything about patrol -- even though he has been here for seven years," the source said of de Blasio.

City Hall did not immediately return a request for comment.

It was unclear when his last day would be -- though it can come in the next 30 days.


Pichardo, who oversees the department's "largest and most visible bureau" -- including a majority of its nearly 24,000 uniformed police officers -- was appointed by Police Commissioner Dermot Shea in December, according to the NYPD.

He began his career in 1997, serving as a police cadet before graduating to a police officer in the Midtown North Precinct two years later.

He went on to hold a number of high-profile posts, including as commanding officer of the 33rd Precinct in Washington Heights and commanding officer of the 43rd Precinct in the Soundview section of the Bronx.

Before being tapped for Chief of Patrol, he served as the Executive Officer in the Patrol Services Bureau under Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison.

Pichardo was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to New York City at the age of 9, the Manhattan Times reported in 2018.

At a promotion ceremony that year, Pichardo recalled how his public school education influenced his career as a police officer, the paper reported.

"I went to school with every race, creed and religion, every type of kid," he said at the time.

"The only way that the city will continue to thrive, is by strengthening those bonds, ensuring that we do our jobs, but you do your part too," he added.

Then-police commissioner James O'Neill lauded him at the ceremony, saying Pichardo is a "great cop, but more importantly, he's a great human being."


The department confirmed his resignation.

"Chief Fausto Pichardo, the NYPD Chief of Patrol, filed for retirement on Tuesday, ending an accomplished more than two-decade long career in the New York City Police Department," the department said in a statement.

"Chief Pichardo, 43, was the first Chief of Patrol of Dominican heritage in NYPD history and has worked tirelessly in recent months to guide the men and women in uniform through a series of challenging issues that have strained the city and the agency."

A spokesman for Mayor de Blasio said that discussions were ongoing.

"Chief of Patrol Pichardo is a deeply respected leader in the NYPD and City Hall is continuing to have conversations with him regarding his future," the rep, Bill Neidhardt, said.


Additional reporting by Ben Feuerherd and Craig McCarthy

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