Mayor Eric Adams on Friday said the NYPD’s top uniformed cop, Jeffrey Maddrey, acted “appropriately” when he intervened in late 2021 following the arrest of a retired officer in Brooklyn for allegedly menacing three kids with a gun.
A trove of videos published by THE CITY Thursday show the retired officer, Kruythoff Forrester, being released, with his arrest voided, roughly 90 minutes after the arrivals of Maddrey and another chief at the 73rd Precinct house in Brownsville, where Forrester was being held.
Maddrey — who supervised Forrester for three years when both men previously worked at the precinct — was serving as the NYPD’s Chief of Community Affairs at the time and was promoted this past December to chief of department.
“I think he handled it appropriately and there’s internal reviews that are done to make that determination,” Adams said in response to a question at an unrelated press conference on public safety at City Hall.
But an attorney for the three youngsters said the footage validated their claims that Forrester was freed after inappropriate intervention.
“The newly released video further verifies the truthful accounts of these young New Yorkers — and lays bare the disgraceful ways in which some of the most powerful people and institutions in New York City were, and remain, willing to steamroll three Black children so a retired NYPD member could save face,” said the lawyer, MK Kaishian.
In his support of the chief, Adams cited Maddrey’s popularity when he worked in Brooklyn, where he also served as commanding officer of Patrol Borough Brooklyn North from 2015 to 2020, as well as his volunteer work around the holidays and a recent decline in citywide crime.
“I have the utmost confidence in Chief Maddrey,” added Adams.
When THE CITY broke the story of Forrester’s arrest and release shortly after the Thanksgiving eve incident in 2021, a source familiar with that night’s events said Maddrey and his colleague, Brooklyn North Deputy Chief Scott Henderson, ordered that Forrester’s arrest be voided.
NYPD officials denied that claim at the time, saying Maddrey and Henderson had ordered an investigation of the incident that night, and that further review could not corroborate the claims of the then-12, 13 and 14-year-old boys that Forrester brandished a gun at them while chasing them through neighborhood streets for seven minutes.
The pursuit erupted after one of the boys threw a basketball at the security camera outside Forrester’s storefront real estate office.
Police later said a probe by the department’s Internal Affairs Bureau found neither Maddrey or Henderson had behaved inappropriately.
The videos newly obtained by THE CITY — 36 recordings from police body-worn cameras as well as neighborhood and police precinct surveillance cameras — show that Sgt. Karl Hanisch of the 73rd Precinct found the kids’ independent and matching descriptions of what Forrester’s gun looked like, as well as of which side of his body he drew it from, convincing enough to warrant the arrest.
They also reveal that at the precinct, Forrester twice asked police personnel to contact Maddrey on his behalf — and that Maddrey showed up at the precinct roughly an hour after those pleas.
In total, Forrester spent 38 minutes in a precinct jail cell and less than three hours at the station house.
Shortly before leaving the precinct, Forrester shook hands with Maddrey and bantered with Maddrey and Henderson for several minutes, the videos show.
Attorney Kaishian called for an independent probe of the incident by state Attorney General Letitia James, whose office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
She also sought redress from those who doubted the boys’ accounts — including local Brooklyn clergy leaders who rallied to Maddrey’s defense in the days after the incident.
“Like too many before them, the victims here have been further harmed by the conduct of those who sought to discredit them simply because their abuser was a cop,” Kaishian said.
THE CITY obtained the videos through a public disclosure law request filed with the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office, which also investigated the incident. That probe found no criminal conduct.
A spokesperson for the DA’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment Friday.