NEW YORK — Mayor Eric Adams put some distance between himself and his police commissioner Friday after voicing support for a recent Cardi B performance at the police academy.
The mayor brought up the Feb. 24 celebrity cameo while briefing the press on former NYPD Chief of Training Juanita Holmes’ new role as Department of Probation commissioner.
In her previous job, Holmes had invited the New York rapper to perform at a police academy event without clearing it with Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell, who vehemently opposed the recital, according to a report in the Daily News.
On Friday, however, Adams praised the idea, putting him in agreement with Holmes and at odds with Sewell.
“There are those who critique: Why would you bring Cardi B because she was arrested?” Adams said. “The same reason why you brought Cardi B is why people voted for me, because I was arrested. You don’t discard people.”
Holmes had also butted heads with Sewell after nixing a timed fitness requirement for recruits, according to a report in the New York Post. While Sewell first shot down the idea, Holmes later went directly to Adams and got the change approved.
On Friday, the mayor praised Holmes’ 35 years in the NYPD and said she was the right person to lead the probation department, in part because of her forgiving nature.
“This is the best fit: someone that understands that you don’t throw people away,” the mayor said. “And I think it’s reflected with what she did with Cardi B.”
Holmes’ departure is part of a broader shakeup in the department. Multiple chiefs have left this year as the NYPD settles under the new leadership of Sewell and Deputy Mayor for Public Safety Philip Banks, an Adams confidant who also exerts influence over the department.