In a new lawsuit, a transit officer from the New York Police Department (NYPD) claims he was penalized for not targeting Hispanics and African-Americans while patrolling New York’s subways during the height of the city’s “stop-and-frisk” policy.
During an exclusive interview with the New York Daily News, Michael Birch, 44, revealed he secretly recorded a 2011 conversation with Capt. Constantin Tsachas while he was employed by District 34 in Brooklyn. In it, Tsachas and another officer (not named in the lawsuit) gave Birch a poor performance review because his reports weren’t adding up to support the idea that Black and Hispanic teens were the biggest perpetrators of hopping turnstiles.
Birch’s stops mostly caught women and White people committing the crime.
Birch told Tsachas he wasn’t targeting a certain group, but merely catching those breaking the law. The tape implied Tsachas wanted the 16-year veteran to keep his eyes open for minorities.
Thanks to the disturbing conversation, Birch believes he was withheld promotions, eventually leading him to file the lawsuit against the NYPD.
The New York Daily Post reports:
“You describe to me who’s committing the crimes, you’re fully aware of it and you’re not targeting those people,” Tsachas said on the tape, which was reviewed by the Daily News. “Almost half the people you see jumping turnstiles are females,” Tsachas griped. “If you were going to write a report on who’s jumping the turnstiles, you’d say half are females.”
“If these people (black and Hispanic teens) are not jumping over turnstiles, what am I going to do?” he argued.
Tsachas was not satisfied that the cop was making an effort to fight crime — and suggested Birch watch turnstiles while hiding.
“You’re like the fire department. You’re just waiting,” the captain said. “The proactive is not there . . . putting your hands on a limited amount of people and not the right people.”
A lieutenant, who is not a defendant in the suit, chimed in: “If you see a group of kids that meet that description, you’re not being racist and you’re not, what’s the word I’m looking for, stereotyping male blacks,” the lieutenant said. “I’m not saying you have to rip his coat and pants off.”
Birch’s lawyer Eric Sanders told the Daily News citizens’ civil rights were ignored in an effort to make money and uphold the legacy of higher-ups. Birch was transferred to the 79th Precinct in Bed-Stuy, a predominately Black area, where he reportedly has “had no performance problems.”
Birch isn’t the first officer to speak out against the NYPD’s questionable tactics. Throughout the duration of former police commissioner Ray Kelly’s stop-and-frisk policy, several officers claimed the system was being used to target minority youth and men.
And, a dozen Black and Hispanic officers filed a lawsuit against Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and the city last year, saying they were forced to make “discriminatory and unwarranted” arrests in their own neighborhoods. Officer Craig Matthews, a 17-year veteran who was recognized as the whistleblower and brought attention to illegal quotas in the Bronx, is expected to receive a $280,000 settlement from the city.
SOURCE: NY Daily News | VIDEO CREDIT: Inform
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21 Of President Barack Obama's Best Photos Of 2015
21 photos Launch gallery
1. JANUARY: President Obama delivers the State of the Union address with the support of vice president Joe Biden. Obama gained mass support after his joke about winning both terms.
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2. JANUARY: President Barack Obama has an adorable moment with Akira Cooper at the Community Children's Center, one of the nation's oldest Head Start providers, in Lawrence, Kan.
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3. JANUARY: President Obama greets Prime Minister Narendra Modi upon arrival at Air Force Station Palam in New Delhi, India.
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4. JANUARY: President Barack Obama greets neighbors after visiting a model home at the Nueva Villas at Beverly, a single-family housing development owned by local nonprofit organization Chicanos Por La Causa Inc. in Phoenix, Ariz.
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5. FEBRUARY: President Barack Obama fakes a jump shot during an Affordable Care Act video taping for BuzzFeed in the White House Library. The video went viral thanks to jokes about his presidency and ultra-cool swag.
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6. FEBRUARY: Obama pals around with one of his biggest supporters, vice president Joe Biden. While he chose not to run in the 2016 presidential election, Obama said he would be in his corner.
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7. FEBRUARY: President Barack Obama talks with 13-year-old student Vidal Chastanet as "Humans of New York" founder Brandon Stanton photographs during a blog interview in the Oval Office. Obama was greatly inspired by Chastanet's comments on the popular "Humans of New York" Instagram page, where he shared his troubles finding courage in school and and life despite living in a dangerous area of Brooklyn, NY.
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8. MARCH: President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama join hands with Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga. as they lead the walk across the Edmund Pettus Bridge to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Bloody Sunday and the Selma to Montgomery civil rights marches, in Selma, Ala., March 7, 2015. Malia and Sasha Obama join hands with their grandmother, Marian Robinson.
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9. MARCH: Obama is a classic man as he puts on a green tie in observance of St. Patrick's Day.
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10. MARCH: President Barack Obama delivers remarks during the event to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Bloody Sunday and the Selma to Montgomery civil rights marches at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala.
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11. APRIL: During the Correspondents' Dinner, his anger translator - played by Key & Peele comedian Keegan-Michael Key - helped Obama get out his biggest frustrations.
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12. APRIL: President Obama arrives in Jamaica to meet with the 15-member Caribbean Community. His trip marked a first for the sitting president and second since the country's independence.
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13. APRIL: Obama speaks with newly appointed Attorney General Loretta Lynch in the Oval Office.
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14. JUNE: President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are seen talking during the president's trip to the G7Summit in Bavaria, Germany.
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15. JUNE: President Obama sings "Amazing Grace" during the eulogy for South Carolina state senator and Rev. Clementa Pinckney during Pinckney's funeral service. Clementa was one of the nine victims who died after suspected shooter Dylann Roof entered the AME church and opened fire.
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16. SEPTEMBER: President Obama is featured on the popular show "Running Wild With Bear Grylls." Obama took the trip to highlight the importance of climate control.
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17. SEPTEMBER: The First Couple serve as "love goals" at the White House's state dinner for Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Madame Peng Liyuan. Obama and Xi announced an agreement on controlling climate change and a mutual outlook on cyber security.
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18. OCTOBER: President Obama meets with Ahmed Mohamed, the student who was detained by Texas police for his homemade clock. The president stood by the teen, who many believe was the victim of Islamophobia.
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19. NOVEMBER: President Obama issues a warning to his critics who "pop off" at his policies towards Syrian refugees. Speaking at the OP 21 United Nations conference on climate change, Obama welcomed his Republican critics to the White House to lay down their own policies. No one has responded.
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20. DECEMBER: President Obama addresses the public from the Oval Office regarding the San Bernardino shooting.
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21. DECEMBER: All grown up! The First Family, including Obama's mother-in-law Marian Robinson, is seen at the White House's national Christmas tree lighting ceremony on Dec. 2.
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