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Lhota turns up heat on Quinn for supporting police monitor

NEW YORK — For a political acolyte of Rudolph W. Giuliani, a ferocious rhetorical bomb-thrower, Joseph J. Lhota has proved an oddly mild candidate so far, repeatedly holding his fire — and his tongue — since declaring his Republican campaign for mayor of New York three months ago.

But on Monday, Lhota conspicuously changed gears, commandeering the steps of City Hall to deliver a blistering attack on his leading Democratic rival, Christine C. Quinn, for endorsing a new agency that would independently monitor the city’s Police Department.

Lhota denounced Quinn’s plan as “reckless and dangerous,” declared that it would “handcuff” the department, and demanded that she immediately withdraw her support for it.

And in a personal twist, he accused Quinn, the City Council speaker, of abdicating her responsibility to have the Council monitor the police force and instead seeking to offload the task to a new and unnecessary bureaucracy.

In doing so, Lhota offered a glimpse of the kind of candidacy that friends and aides have long promised: punchy, pointed and deeply committed to a vision of a muscular chief executive at City Hall.

—Michael Barbaro, The New York Times

Kelly intended frisks to instill fear, Senator testifies

NEW YORK — During a legislative debate in 2010 over the Police Department’s use of stop-and-frisk encounters, the police commissioner, Raymond W. Kelly, met with the governor at the time, David A. Paterson, to defend the tactic’s importance as a crime-fighting tool.

According to a state senator, Eric Adams, who was at the meeting at the governor’s office in Midtown Manhattan, the commissioner said young black and Hispanic men were the focus of the stops because “he wanted to instill fear in them, every time they leave their home they could be stopped by the police.”

Adams, D-Brooklyn, a former captain in the New York Police Department, recalled the meeting as he testified in U.S. District Court in Manhattan on Monday, as a trial over the constitutionality of the department’s use of the tactic entered its third week.

Kelly, who is not being called to testify, said in remarks to reporters Monday that Adams’ characterization of what he said was “absolutely, categorically untrue.” Kelly has also filed an affidavit in court, saying, “At that meeting I did not, nor would I ever, state or suggest that the New York City Police Department targets young black and Latino men for stop-and-frisk activity.”

It continued: “That has not been nor is it now the policy or practice of the NYPD.”

—Joseph Goldstein, The New York Times

Double-digit inflation worsens in Iran

Iran’s double-digit inflation rate worsened for the sixth consecutive month in March, the government said Monday, in what appeared to be an implicit acknowledgment that international sanctions linked to the disputed Iranian nuclear program are causing some economic harm.

The government’s statistics office said the rate increased in March to an annualized 31.5 percent, compared with 30.2 percent in February and 26.4 percent a year earlier, the semiofficial Mehr News Agency reported. The Mehr report did not offer an explanation for the increase except to specify that much of it was in the categories of food, beverages and tobacco.

Many economists say the real rate could be at least double the official rate, partly because it does not fully take into account the prices of many imported goods, which have become prohibitively expensive.

—Rick Gladstone, The New York Times