Michael from Muckrock writes, "Watch what you say: That next taxi you hail could be driven by New York's Finest. A MuckRock FOIA request has found that the NYPD has at least three undercover cop cars posing as taxis … and quite possibly many more."
"The NYPD has been silent about how the cars are used, denying requests for information, but the city's Taxi and Limousine Commission did release documents which noted that the NYPD was faced with the challenge of expiring taxi stickers."
Update: Herman Yung has posted a gallery of 7 undercovery NYPD "taxis".
The emails reveal that in July 2015, the NYPD received summonses from the TLC for two vehicles that did not have any visible proof of insurance. Unfortunately, even the term that the TLC and NYPD use for these undercover vehicles has been redacted.
The next email from the NYPD requested that the TLC retract the summonses issued to these vehicles.
The exchange suggests either poor communication between the agencies, or that the TLC cannot tell on its end which cabs are being used by the NYPD. The TLC refused to comment and defered to the NYPD, which refused to respond to multiple requests for comment.
Likewise, on August 6, a member of the NYPD emailed the TLC asking for assistance in acquiring new window decals to replace expired ones. In probably one of the biggest disclosures, this email revealed that the NYPD had at least five vehicles that needed new TLC decals. Presumably, these five vehicles all look like taxicabs.
NYPD has at least five undercover 'Cop Cabs'
(Image: Daniel Bahn Petersen)