Big, weak and slow is no way to become a cop – or is it?
The NYPD has dramatically relaxed fitness requirements to become a city cop amid a record wave of retirements that are desperate for hot bodies to fill the ranks, The Post has learned.
The department replaced a 6-foot false wall inside the Police Academy gymnasium with an easier-to-climb chain-link fence, according to official recruiting videos posted online.
The move came after a cellphone was used last year to record a series of wannabe cops trying – and failing – to get up and break through the wall.
A copy of the compilation video obtained by The Post shows a contestant lowering his head in shame after two failed attempts.
The “Barrier Surmount” is one of six tasks that include a physical exam known as the “Job Standard Test” that would-be cops must pass before beginning six months of training at the academy in Flushing, Queens. .
And to increase the success rate, the 3 minute, 28 second time limit that was in place in 2019 was extended by nearly a full minute — to 4:28 a.m. — last year, according to NYPD recruiting videos posted on Youtube.
A disgusted cop says ‘it really isn’t difficult’ to pass the fitness test, which involves repeatedly running up and down a six-step staircase and using a weight machine meant to mimic wrestling with a suspect .
“If you can’t meet the basic requirements to be a police officer, you shouldn’t be one,” the veteran cop said.
In addition to relaxing the Job Standard Test, the NYPD appears to have dropped a rule that required recruits to run 1.5 miles in 2:21 p.m. or less to graduate from the academy.
This qualification is posted on an official webpage that features the 2019 video detailing the JST, but it is not part of another that features last year’s video.
Sources said the 1.5 mile race has not been officially phased out, but senior brass are considering scrapping it, with one saying: “So many people are retiring in droves and they must occupy these positions.”
Last weekend, The Post reported that more than 2,100 cops have retired or left the NYPD amid a record exodus this year, surpassing the 1,535 who left the force in the first six months of 2020, in the midst of the first deadly wave of the COVID -19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, the academy class that graduated Friday included just 561 new cops, just over half of the 1,009 that sources said the NYPD hoped to hire.
The city began accepting applications for the NYPD written exam on June 8. The registration deadline is July 15, with testing scheduled to begin August 12.
In a prepared statement on Tuesday, an NYPD spokesperson said, “Our fitness requirements at the Police Academy have been reviewed and approved by [the] The New York State Criminal Justice Department Division and the NYPD will continue to comply with all state-issued guidelines.