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Bill Bratton May Choose to Run London Cops Instead of NYPD

By Murray Weiss | January 29, 2013 6:52am
 Former NYPD Commissioner William Bratton.
Former NYPD Commissioner William Bratton.
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DNAinfo/Heather Grossmann

NEW YORK — William Bratton, the former NYPD commissioner credited with turning around the city’s crime levels in the mid-1990s, could take himself out of the running to succeed Ray Kelly as the 42nd Police Commissioner.

That’s because he may apply to head London's police force after the British government this month unveiled plans to amend a law that previously prohibited non-British subjects from applying for top policing jobs.

The prohibition was one of the only things blocking Bratton’s prospects of partnering with London’s Metropolitan Police in 2011 — since British Prime Minister, David Cameron, courted him to possibly run the fabled Scotland Yard.

In addition to touting Bratton’s crime fighting strategies at the NYPD, the prime minister was particularly interested in bringing in Bratton’s expertise in combatting gang violence, which he dealt with while running the Los Angeles Police Department, to help quell the problem in London.

According to published reports in England, Home Secretary Teresa May, a staunch opponent to amending the law about foreigners running British law enforcement agencies, has changed her position and now supports an amendment. 

That would clear the way for Bratton and other non-Brits to take over their law enforcement agencies.

And by most accounts, Bratton is a favorite among the British leaders and the press. The Daily Mail referred to him as an “American Supercop” just last week.

Bratton has made it clear that he is anxious to return to running a big city police force in the U.S. or in London, where he served as a consultant to Cameron on gangs after riots swept through London last year.

At the time, the Boston native said the post that would interest him would be metro commander.

Despite the allure of London, however, sources tell “On the Inside” that if Bratton were given an opportunity to take the helm of the NYPD for a second time he would likely prefer to remain in his familiar New York environs instead of making the dramatic leap across the pond.

“On The Inside” last week reported on a list of Kelly successors who were waiting in the wings to run the well-oiled NYPD. 

One of those mentioned, Art Acevedo, the top cop in Austin, Texas, where radio station KXAN reports that on Sunday Chief Acevedo tweeted “My friends are calling me about New York City, but I’m loyal to the lone Star state.”

The radio station added that “the social media post has since been removed.”