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NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea’s son is becoming a cop like his dad — joining New York’s Finest at a time when many officers are bailing out.
Richard Shea, 21, was one of 900 recruits appointed Nov. 2 to start six months of training in the city’s Police Academy, officials confirmed. The city added another class of 592 on Dec. 29.
“Richie” Shea began his law-enforcement career as a summer college intern in the NYPD in 2018.
He represents the second generation in a prominent police family. His father and James Shea, the commissioner’s older brother by seven years, both graduated from the academy in 1991. After more than 20 years in the NYPD, James Shea now serves as Jersey City’s public safety director.
Richard Shea is not the first chief’s kid to follow in his father’s footsteps, but he’s joining the NYPD in the wake of the George Floyd killing and other high-profile brutality cases — a time fraught with anti-cop fervor fueled by social media.
“There are people who hate cops who have never dealt with cops,” said Joseph Giacalone, a retired NYPD sergeant who teaches at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
“You have so many political forces against you,” Giacalone said, including a crop of mayoral candidates calling to cut NYPD funding, restrict the commissioner’s powers to impose discipline, and clamp down on police practices.
Cops are quitting a faster clip. More than 2,400 NYPD officers filed paperwork to take their pensions through the first nine months of 2020 — a 25 percent jump over roughly 2,000 retirements in all of 2019, the Independent Budget Office found.
Yet new recruits like Richard Shea “have a calling to serve the public and do good,” Giacalone said. “It’s a noble profession, no matter what the activists are screaming at you.”
The commissioner and his son declined to comment.
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