these individuals reports to the Commissioner. Fifteen Deputy Commissioners serve under the Commissioner and the First Deputy Commissioner, including the Deputy Commissioner for Legal Matters, the Deputy Commissioner of Trials, the Deputy Commissioner of Internal Affairs, and the Department Advocate.[6] The position of Deputy Commissioner for Legal Matters, which has a critical role in Departmental disciplinary matters, has been vacant since July 30, 2018, when Lawrence Byrne retired.

As members of the Department, police officers are subject to extensive internal rules and regulations that govern their conduct. The NYPD’s Patrol Guide, for example and primarily, sets out the many rules that officers must follow in executing their official duties. Officers who fail to abide by these rules may be subject to the Department’s disciplinary process.

A number of unions represent the interests of officers. The Police Benevolent Association is the largest of these unions, representing approximately 24,000 police officers.[7] The Lieutenants Benevolent Association represents approximately 5,250 active and retired members who hold (or held) that rank.[8] The Captains Endowment Association represents 2,100 members who hold (or held) the rank of Captain, Inspector, Deputy Inspector, Deputy Chief, and Surgeon.[9] The Detectives’ Endowment Association represents approximately 18,800 members who hold (or held) that rank, and the Sergeants Benevolent Association represents approximately 12,000 members who hold (or held) that rank. These unions negotiate with the City and enter into agreements that govern compensation, benefits, dispute resolution, and other personnel issues.[10]


This executive summary provides a brief overview of the Panel’s key findings and recommendations.

The Panel centered its work on four core subjects: (1) the lack of transparency into the disciplinary process and its outcomes; (2) the Commissioner’s virtually unlimited discretion over disciplinary cases; (3) allegations of favoritism, bias, and inconsistent penalties; and (4) delay in

[6] Id.

[7] NYC PBA, Who We Are, (last visited Jan. 8, 2019). On January 14, 2019, the PBA announced that it had changed its name from the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association to the Police Benevolent Association. See PBA Comes a Long Way, Finally Takes ‘Men’ Out of Name, The Chief (Jan. 14, 2019),

[8] NYC LBA, (last visited Jan. 8, 2019); Borelli for New York, NYC Lieutenants Benevolent Association Endorses Joe Borelli for City Council (Aug. 25, 2017),

[9] NYC Captains Endowment Association, (last visited Jan. 8, 2019); Tom DePrisco for State Senate, DePrisco Receives New York City Police Department Captains Endowment Association Endorsement (Oct. 24, 2016),

[10] See, e.g., Captains’ Endowment Association 2012-2019 Agreement, (Aug. 6, 2018), available at