FDNY Warns of Gun-Waving NYPD Cops

The Fire Department has warned its members to be careful entering stairwells and rooftops after two on-duty firefighters walked onto a Brooklyn roof and were confronted by two NYPD cops with their guns drawn and pointed at them, The Post has learned.


The Fire Department has warned its members to be careful entering stairwells and rooftops after two on-duty firefighters walked onto a Brooklyn roof and were confronted by two NYPD cops with their guns drawn and pointed at them, The Post has learned.

While the cops didn't shoot, fire officials believed the incident was serious enough to issue a safety bulletin to every firehouse this month.

"Members entering stairwells and exiting bulkhead doors are advised to do so slowly and carefully, and loudly announce that they are members of the Fire Department," the bulletin said, noting "members must be aware that this situation can occur anytime day or night."

The bulletin comes months after Timothy Stansbury, an unarmed 19-year-old boy, was shot to death by a housing cop on the rooftop of the Louis Armstrong Houses in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.

In the latest incident, six firefighters from Ladder Co. 103 in East New York responded to a March 15 call that people were stuck in an elevator serving a city Housing Department building at 400 Williams Ave.

At around 3:45 p.m., two firefighters in bunker gear walked up the stairs, pushed opened the door and stepped out onto the roof to shut down electricity to the elevator, and were shocked to find the two cops with their guns trained on them, the bulletin said.

"When they [the cops] realized it was FDNY members, they holstered their weapons and said they heard someone coming up the stairs, which caused them to react in the above manner," the bulletin said.

The startled firefighters later informed their supervisors of the incident, and the officers talked it over with a police captain in the 75th Precinct, sources said.

The captain told the supervisors the cops were doing "vertical" patrols as part of the department's Impact Zone Program, which puts cops in designated areas that have crime activity, and that the department patrols housing projects as well as certain private buildings, sources said.

The supervisors contacted a borough commander, and the memo - which reminded firefighters that most cops who do vertical patrols were junior officers and rookies - was soon dispatched.

"This memo was sent out simply as a safety measure and a reminder to the rank and file that the NYPD conducts vertical patrols, and these are measures we should take," said an FDNY spokesman.