Ill-timed April Fools’ Day coronavirus prank riles NYPD

An April fool’s prank promising 12-hour shifts in the face of coronavirus made its rounds among the NYPD’s rank-and-file Wednesday — but many cops said the coronavirus crisis is just no laughing matter.

“This is such a serious pandemic and to make a joke when people are getting seriously ill and officers are on edge is wrong,” said Sgt. Joe Imperatrice, the founder of Blue Lives Matter NYC.

“This isn’t a time to be joking around.”

The trick was sent around as a citywide “Finest Message” telling cops starting April 8 all officers, sergeants, detective and lieutenants would move to 12-hour shifts.

The order appeared real — except for the last few words of the penultimate paragraph that read: “chart schedule effect on April mutherf—in fool’s day.”

“Cops have nothing better to do than to scare other cops,” one police source grumbled.

Another quipped, “The NYPD is the best at spreading rumors.”

It was unclear where the message originated.

The department has said it could move to 12-hour tours if enough cops fall ill, but has yet to make that change official.

The prank message was time-stamped just over an hour after Police Commissioner Dermot Shea told CNN the department wasn’t at that point yet.

“There’s more behind the 12-hour tours. People are worried about getting sick, daycare,” Imperatrice said.

“You don’t joke about that. Something like that where it looks really real,” he said, adding that some wouldn’t spot the prank.

The NYPD did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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