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Rallies For & Against NYPD Tactics Held In NYC

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Dueling demonstrations took place Saturday on police policy issues in New York City.

As 1010 WINS' Roger Stern reported, NYPD supporters gathered in the South Beach section of Staten Island both to honor fallen officers and to counter the intense criticism of police following the apparent chokehold death of Eric Garner while in police custody over the summer.

Many of those in attendance said the public shouldn't be so quick to judge officers on the street, like the officer involved in the Garner case, Stern reported.

"What'd he do? He did his job. It's my son, your son, anybody who gets on the job; you send them out there to do a job and all of a sudden nobody knows him," said retired police officer Bud Harrington.

Harrington said he went to Saturday's rally to support the officer.

"To support the young cop who is in the jack for just doing his job," he said. "He went to work that day and all of a sudden he's going before grand juries and being charged with murder."

Rallies For & Against NYPD Tactics Held In NYC

During the rally, about 150 people stood in silence, remembering five members of the NYPD from Staten Island who have died, WCBS 880's Monica Miller reported.

"They step out and they stand tall to protect the people of New York," said Bill Long.

Long was wearing a shirt with a logo of the 130th Precinct. On the back was a list of names of those who died in the line of duty, including his father's.

"It's a tremendous act of patriotism," he said.

Former police officer Richard Weisel said he was disappointed thousands weren't at the rally to support the NYPD, including Mayor Bill de Blasio.

"He should stand behind the people who stand behind him. Or actually, who stand in front of him," Weisel said.

Rallies For & Against NYPD Tactics Held In NYC

Meanwhile, activists and residents who are unhappy with NYPD policing tactics rallied and marched in Sunset Park, Brooklyn.

Protesters chanted "no justice, no peace," as they marched, Stern reported.

It's the same neighborhood at the center of a recent video showing an officer taking down a pregnant woman and then allegedly hitting her with his baton, Stern reported.

"A pregnant woman is not a threat and we need send that message," said Claudia.

The incident happened less than a week after another police officer in Sunset Park was allegedly caught kicking a fruit vendor while police were holding him on the ground. That officer was suspended, but residents said that is not enough.

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