Donald Trump’s campaign is denying that the candidate wanted to meet with New York police officers Friday afternoon and hold a press conference at a midtown precinct in a show of support following the Dallas police ambush.
“Mr. Trump and the campaign did not reach out with a request to address a roll call,” said campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks, referring to the mid-afternoon shift change of officers.
But a city official said that Keith Schiller — Trump’s head of security — called a community affairs officer at the precinct asking for such a meeting. The officer ran the request up the chain of command at the New York Police Department, and it was quickly denied, the official told CNN.
“He wanted to exploit the department and have a press conference with cops,” the official said.
New York City Police Commissioner Bill Bratton told reporters later Friday that the police department is “not in the business of providing photo ops for our candidates.”
“Our interest is staying out of the politics of the moment, and not to provide photo ops,” Bratton told reporters, according to the New York Daily News. “If Mr. Trump wants to speak to me, I would be happy to brief him on what we’re doing. If (Hillary) Clinton wants to speak to me, I would very happy to brief her on what we’re doing. But we are not in the business of providing photo ops for our candidates.”
An aide on the Trump campaign said that a request might have gone out tangentially from someone within the Trump Organization, mentioning long-standing ties between members of the organization and the NYPD.