A Black Lives Matter leader has vowed there’ll be “bloodshed” if Mayor-elect Eric Adams follows through with his promise to bring back the NYPD’s disbanded Anti-Crime Unit.
New York BLM co-founder Hawk Newsome debated police reform with Adams during a contentious sit-down at Brooklyn Borough Hall Wednesday that was livestreamed on Instagram.
Although Adams found common ground with the activists on plans to fight poverty in the black community, the former NYPD captain said he’ll be reinstating the undercover unit that was disbanded at the height of widespread police protests last year.
“If they think they are going back to the old ways of policing then we’re going to take to the streets again,” New York BLM co-founder Hawk Newsome said outside Borough Hall after the meeting. “There will be riots. There will be fire, and there will be bloodshed.”
“To ignore that history and say you’re bringing it back means that he’s tone deaf,” Newsome told The Post over the phone about the task force whose officers were involved in the deaths of Amadou Diallo, Sean Bell and Eric Garner.
Adams, throughout his campaign, promised to bring back a “reinvented” version of the Anti-Crime Unit that was tasked with firearm busts, as well as a crackdown on violent crime and hard drugs.
The controversial unit was dissolved in June 2020 by Police Commissioner Dermot Shea following a “disproportionate” number of high-profile incidents that involved the plainclothes cops.
Former officer Daniel Pantaleo was assigned to the anti-crime unit when he placed Eric Garner into a chokehold on Staten Island — with the man’s last words, “I can’t breathe” becoming a rallying cry for the BLM movement.
The BLM leader said he was troubled Adams “didn’t offer a comment on police reform … he wouldn’t offer us anything concrete” during their sit-down.
“We will be at his front door, we will be at Gracie Mansion, we will be in the streets, if he allows these police to abuse us,” Newsome said.
“I am not threatening anyone. I am just saying that it’s a natural response to aggressive oppression, people will react.”
In a statement to The Post, Adams said there is “no reason we cannot have both safe streets and racial justice in our city.”
“If Black lives truly matter, then we must address violence in our communities while we address bias in policing. Yelling and not listening gets us nowhere.”
At one point during the meeting, the mayor-elect grew agitated with Chivona Newsome, Hawks’ sister, who said politicians “shuck, jive and use rap quotes,” but don’t enact meaningful changes for people of color.
“You need to be corrected,” Adams said, talking over her. “You need to be corrected based on what you’re saying. Don’t tell me, ‘I need to do this’ … say, ‘We need to do this.’”
“I put my body on the line for my community. So I’m not here for folks to come and say ‘I’m going to hold you accountable.’ No it’s us,” Adams lectured.
The meeting marked the first time Newsome met with an incoming or sitting mayor, as he told The Post he refused overtures from Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration, calling him a “buffoon.”
The controversial BLM leader took credit for Adams’ election, claiming his movement allowed him to “achieve power.”
“At least with Eric Adams, we have a clean slate,” Newsome said, adding he thinks he will work with the incoming mayor on “anti-violence programs and food programs.”
Adams told leaders that as the city’s second black mayor, he was the person best equipped to bring meaningful socioeconomic and educational change to the community.
“There’s one thing that we do agree on, that we need to change conditions that people are living in, historical conditions. And the conditions have not changed,” Adams said.
“What I know for sure, is there is no one in this city that’s going to deal with this issue as the mayor of this city better than I’m going to.”