A New York police union leader claimed over the weekend that the department is "undermanned" and needs about 60 new detectives to deal with MS-13 violence.
The startling claim was made Sunday by James McDermott, president of the Nassau Police Benevolent Association, who called out a "new normal" of gang violence in the area.
The comments came after police unearthed a badly decomposed body Saturday in a shallow grave at a popular nature preserve in Massapequa, Long Island, a suburb about an hour from Manhattan. The investigation is ongoing, but police believe the victim is one of 11 killed by MS-13 in 2016.
"Our gang unit is undermanned and not provided with the necessary resources to deal with this threat," said McDermott.
Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder pushed back on the claim Wednesday on "Fox & Friends," saying the grisly discovery does not represent a "new norm" in the area.
Ryder said there has been just one MS-13 murder in the past 22 months and violent crime is down 40 percent in the county, a result of a police crackdown in recent years on the brutal transnational gang.
"The pressure we have put on the gang members has suppressed the gang activity," he told host Brian Kilmeade.
Ryder said the shortage of detectives stems from a contractual issue in which police officers who get promoted to the rank actually end up with less pay. He said the contract is being re-negotiated and his goal is to increase the total from 12 to 20 in the gang unit.