New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s chief of security allegedly covered up a 2015 car crash involving him to protect his image and avoid bad “optics,” a new report claims.
The mayor, sitting in the back seat of a black NYPD Chevy Tahoe, was involved in a car crash while on his way to an event in Harlem when a driver who was changing lanes hit the car on Aug. 22, 2015.
Howard Redmond, the de Blasio’s executive security unit, immediately ordered to hide the incident from the public to protect the mayor’s reputation, the New York Daily News reported, citing obtained text messages.
“As per CO [commanding officer] no one is to know about this,” Sgt. Jerry Ioveno texted to the unit’s other members, warning against mentioning it to other teams.
“As per CO [commanding officer] no one is to know about this.”
— Sgt. Jerry Ioveno
Other messages reportedly indicate that the Redmond took such move on the grounds that the mayor’s reputation must be protected and the crash cause bad “optics.”
The crash disappeared into the memory hole following the orders, with no record of the incident available from the Department of Motor Vehicles, while messages show the driver of the mayor’s SUV was listed as a backup to give an impression that the mayor wasn’t present during the crash, the newspaper claimed.
The Mayor’s office told Fox News: "We take every collision seriously and have total confidence in the NYPD to investigate each to the fullest."
NYPD spokesman Phillip Walzak dismissed the suggestion that the incident was suppressed and said instead that the department took the instance seriously.
“Far from a coverup, this in fact shows the exact opposite – the NYPD took this incident seriously,” the spokesperson told Fox News in a statement.