NEW YORK — The NYPD mounted unit is an elite, and very visible specialized team with the police department.
Made up of only 60 members out of more than 30,000 New York cops, they patrol in the heart of the most crowded areas of the city.
Police Officer Andy Gjeci, alongside his partner “Texas” talked about the mix of policing and community relations, “It’s a lot of community policing. It’s a lot of petting horses, people coming up and taking pictures.”
That mix of animal ambassadorship and elite officers is now getting added attention in their own calendar, benefitting the NYC Police Foundation — 12 months of horse and rider, all to raise money for the police foundation — the mission to bring better technology to the NYPD.
The Not-for-profit started in the 70’s, buying police horses for the Mounted Unit, along with bullet resistant vests and today specialized canines highly trained in detection of a multitude of explosive materials.
Incredibly, the majority of officers in this unit have never even ridden a horse before joining the unit and getting specialized training needed.
It’s a tremendous advantage to be one of these 10-foot tall cops, perched high a-top 1700 pounds of horsepower, when it comes to fighting crime.
Deputy Inspector Barry Gelbman explained further, “Our horses and officers are able to see into a crowd. We can navigate through crowds. Most people will yield to a horse.”
Police Officer Caitlin Jones was lovingly grooming her horse as she got ready to head out for patrol in Times Square.
“I trust him, and he trusts I won’t put him in an uncomfortable situation. I get to do what I love and get paid to do it!”
To get your own calendar, click here.