On Tuesday, the Federal Bureau of Investigation raided the headquarters of a New York Police Department sergeant’s union as part of an ongoing investigation, two people familiar with the situation said, according to The New York Times.
The Manhattan office of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, which represents around 13,000 active and retired New York sergeants, was searched in connection with a joint investigation between the FBI and the Manhattan U.S. attorney’s office public corruption unit.
The home of the union’s president, Edward D. Mullins, was also searched, a person familiar with the operation said.
The Times reported that the focus and scope of the investigation is unknown and a spokesman for the Bureau only revealed that they were “conducting a law enforcement operation pursuant to an ongoing investigation.”
At the union’s headquarters, federal agents lowered dark blinds and covered the windows with cardboard to stop the public from viewing the operation, which was executed around noon.
Mullins, who has led the union since 2002, has been outspoken in his criticism of Democrat lawmakers.
In an op-ed published in The Hill, Mullins wrote, “Without public safety as a policy priority — that is, without police — congressional Democrats cannot expect to weather the inevitable midterm storm coming their way, especially considering that the vocal anti-police contingent among them almost lost the party its House majority in 2020.”
“Congressional Democrats need police to speak to the vast and diverse middle of America, center left and center right, who correctly see public safety as complex and necessary,” he continued. “The real question is whether police need congressional Democrats.”
Mullins also recently faced internal discipline over his controversial social media posts, including two internal charges for offensive language and one for abuse of authority, according to the New York Post. In one social media post in September of 2020, Mullins referred to Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-NY), then a city councilman, as a “first class whore.” In May of 2020, Mullins also called former New York City health commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot a “bitch.”
During a news conference on Tuesday, New York City mayor Bill de Blasio declined to comment on the raid or investigation. De Blasio said he was unaware of any details, but added that Mr. Mullins has been a “divisive voice” with “destructive” behavior.
Torres, who represents the Bronx, mocked Mullins in a tweet Tuesday.
“Ed Mullins, who famously called me a “first-class whore” for daring to ask questions about the @SBANYPD, just got a first-class raid from the FBI,” Torres tweeted.
Torres’ comments referenced the now-deleted tweet posted by Mullins last year in which he called the then-congressional candidate a “first class whore” after Torres called for an investigation of the police union.
“He[sic] we go America this is what a first class whore looks like RITCHIE TORRES,” Mullins wrote on Twitter at the time. “Passes laws to defund police, supports criminals, & now because he’s running for office he blames the police to protect what he voted for. Remember Little Ritchie? Meet LYING RITCHIE.”