An NYPD officer is being reprimanded for what she and her lawyer say is a simple typo that she made, after a #BlackLivesMatter hashtag remark on a Brooklyn precinct’s Twitter page was traced back to her personal account.
Four and a half year veteran Gwendolyn Bishop initially claimed she didn’t recall replying to a February 17, 2016 tweet the 76th Precinct put out, in which it celebrated an illegal firearms bust with a photo of several of Bishop’s colleagues posing with the hot weapon. “#76Pct Special Ops Team makes arrest and recovers a loaded 9MM hand gun #onelessgun,” the tweet read. However, Bishop remained under scrutiny, due to a response that read “Sad day for the 76th Pct. #Blacklivesmatter,” being made by the handle @ducklipzanddimplzz, which is now defunct, but at the time bore her photo.
Bishop’s defense has since changed, as she now contends that while the posting is still hazy in her memory, she must have been trying to write #BlueLivesMatter, but was thwarted by auto-correct. There is in fact evidence that she followed up the comment with two additional replies, each of which read #BlueLivesMatter, her attorney John Tynan notes.
Tynan has been trying to get the department to shake the infraction, which is only one of an assortment she is currently facing for insubordination. She is also facing disciplinary action for going on break without informing her superiors, going over her supervisors head to get vacation time approved, and for going on vertical patrols on her own, in addition to allegedly bad mouthing higher ranking officers at the precinct. In addressing Bishop’s comments on Twitter, however, he cites that no department protocol had been breached.
“She can reply to a tweet just as the 500 million others who use Twitter can,” said Tynan, while pointing out Bishop’s liberty to freely interact under her personal account.
Facing a loss of up to 30 days vacation for the numerous allegations against her, Bishop’s tone is a bit more measured than her lawyers is however. “If I had to guess, there were a lot of changes in my precinct about shifts being switched, but it had nothing to do about this gun arrest,” she told Commissioner David Weisel, in regards to the nature of her tweet.