Roughly three hours into a police standoff involving a gang leader that led to a firefighter being shot multiple times, anyone looking for New York Mayor Bill de Blasio wouldn’t have found him at his desk … or even under it. Anyone seeking out hizzoner during a crisis in his city would have found him taking part in his normal gym routine.
First a little background from NY 1:
Police say the man who wounded a city firefighter during a standoff inside a Staten Island home Friday morning has been shot and killed by officers.
The NYPD says it all began just before 6 a.m., when officers along with U.S. Marshals arrived at 15 Destiny Court in Mariners Harbor to execute an arrest warrant for a man identified as Garland Tyree on a probation violaton [sic].
“A couple of loud bangs, probably, and then as I was getting ready to head to work, I come in, I see firetrucks in the court, which is a rare occasion. I see police in full gear with guns drawn,” said neighbor Andrew Jones.
Negotiators urged Tyree to surrender for over six hours. During that time, after knowing full-well about the situation, de Blasio hit the weight room.
Via the Observer:
But despite calling the situation “very serious,” it apparently was not serious enough to interfere with Mr. de Blasio’s morning gym routine, which involves a drive from his Gracie Mansion home in Manhattan to the Park Slope YMCA in his old Brooklyn neighborhood. Mr. de Blasio’s ill-timed work-out was first reported by NY1’s Grace Rauh, who said it appeared the mayor was at the gym for two hours — or at least, his detail was: Mr. de Blasio left through a back door, possibly to avoid Ms. Rauh and her camera.
Mr. de Blasio’s spokeswoman Karen Hinton first said on Twitter that the mayor was at the gym for 80 minutes, then said on Twitter that he arrived at 9 a.m. — about three hours after the stand-off began and the firefighter had been shot—and left at 10:40 a.m, which amounts to 100 minutes. Ms. Hinton clarified that the mayor’s workout was 80 minutes, but he stayed at the gym to make phone calls.
The suspect was shot and killed as he exited the building, still firing shots six hours later.
De Blasio refused to comment on his gym routine taking precedence over concern for the ongoing standoff, saying “that’s just not a serious question.”
NY 1 reports however, that the incident did strike a nerve with people on social media.
One [user] produced an image of the mayor burning calories while the city burned behind him.
Joe Borelli, a Republican Staten Island Assemblyman who is running for City Council, piled on.
“The Mayor has once again missed an opportunity to demonstrate support for our first responders as one of them lay shot on a hospital stretcher. It’s almost incomprehensible,” Borelli wrote.
This is not the first time de Blasio demonstrated misordered priorities by choosing the gym over what might be called “grave” responsibilities. When the nation’s first Puerto Rican-born congressman, Herman Badillo, died in December 2014, de Blasio skipped the funeral to work out.
Cross-posted at the Mental Recession