Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blamed New York City’s crime spike on parents shoplifting food – not Mayor Bill de Blasio’s recent cuts to the New York Police Department, or the state releasing hundreds of criminals from prison because of risk of contagion of COVID-19.
“Do we think this has to do with the fact that there’s record unemployment in the United States right now? The fact that people are at a level of economic desperation that we have not seen since the great recession?” she said in a Thursday town hall, a clip of which was shared by The Hill on Twitter Sunday.
“Maybe this has to do with the fact that people aren’t paying their rent and are scared to pay their rent. And so they go out and they need to feed their child and they don’t have money. So, you maybe have to — they’re put in a position where they feel like they either need to shoplift some bread or go hungry that night.”
AOC said the city’s decision to cut the police department’s budget by $1 billion on July 1 had nothing to do with the increased rate of murders and shootings within the city. De Blasio’s anti-police administration has led to a 411 percent increase in police retirement filings within the city.
“Keep in mind that this uptick in crime that’s happening right now is with a $6 billion New York City Police Department budget. We have shoved more and more and more money into the NYPD. It has not prevented this uptick in crime,” she said.
New York City had 43 shootings in the last week, a spike of more than 300% from the same period a year ago. Over July 4th weekend, there were 10 shootings and one person killed. Just this weekend, the New York Post reported 15 people were shot in a 15 hour timespan.
Because of COVID-19 concerns, New York also released about 2,500 prisoners early from the jail at Rikers Island. According to Newsweek, “at least 250 of those that were released have been arrested 450 times thus far meaning some have been rearrested more than once.”
“We’re continuing to see people get arrested over and over and let right back out. And it really defies common sense,” Dermot Shea, commissioner of the New York City Police Department, said in an interview with NBC 4 News.
“If this was a business, the business would go bankrupt…You need to insert some common sense into how the criminal justice system works,” Shea said.
But yeah AOC, the increase in crime is directly attributable to parents shoplifting food for their kids in these hard economic times.