A New York Post reporter posed as a homeless man outside Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Gracie Mansion, only to have the cops shoo him away.
Trouble for the covert beggar began after a man in a tan suit emerged from the mayor’s gates, examined the bum on the public sidewalk and quickly went back inside.
The reporter, Kevin Fasick, ensconced himself on a park bench adjacent to de Blasio’s home. He then was promptly told by an New York Police officer he would not be welcomed in the public park.
“Here’s the thing: You try to panhandle in front of the mayor’s house, he’s going to have you moved,” the cop told Fasick.
“You’re in front of the mayor’s house. Think about it. How does it look, somebody panhandles in front of the mayor’s house? You see what I’m saying?” he continued to explain before three patrol cars came to the scene flashing their lights.
After a brief discussion, the policemen told the bum he could remain in the park. “You can panhandle here, all I’m trying to say is that you’re not gonna make money here because you don’t get a lot of people.”
This wasn’t the first time a police officer had approached Fasick on Wednesday. He was earlier told to “keep walking” after being spotted pacing back and forth in front of the mayor’s entrance.
Likewise, the same officer followed Fasick. He kicked the vagrant off the bench outside the entrance to the mayor’s house only moments later. The public bench is supposedly available to all NY citizens, regardless of their domicile status, according to NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton.
The homeless “have every bit as much right … as you or I” to venture through the park or settle on public benches, he said in a Wednesday press conference.
Fasick gave up his park bench to another undercover reporter. Fasick left but returned to the bench after his accomplice continued on her way. This irked the NYPD officer only more.
“Why’d you come back? I thought I told you to sit over there,” the officer said upon seeing poverty stricken individual.
Other individuals were far kinder to the undercover reporter. Critical of the police, 20 year old Damian Misuir objected to their tactics.
“Simply because he’s homeless, they have to jump on his case. He’s a person just like anybody else, he’s not hurting anyone,” he said.