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Letter: Change police culture at the top

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton, pictured Sept. 8, 2015,

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton, pictured Sept. 8, 2015, is set to announce new rules on the use of force by cops on Oct. 1, 2015. Photo Credit: Yeong-Ung Yang / Yeong-Ung Yang

I agree that most cops deserve respect. Some police officers, however, think they are above the law and can do whatever they want ["Give cops respect, but also scrutiny," Editorial, Sept. 17].

After a New York City police officer slammed retired tennis star James Blake to the ground, reports said the officer failed to immediately identify himself. Absent the video surveillance, what if Blake or someone else thought he was about to be mugged and resisted? Would the officer have shot him?

Blake has urged that officers undergo certain training to ensure there isn't a recurrence. Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said the same thing after the death of Eric Garner. The issue is not one of training. It's an attitude and police culture that can only be altered by wholescale changes at top levels.

The ultimate question is, how often did such incidents occur before the proliferation of video surveillance and cellphone cameras?

John Gimberlein, West Babylon