Two New York Lawmakers Sue NYPD, Claiming Officers Beat Them With Their Bicycles
According to a new lawsuit, a New York state senator and assembly member, along with other peaceful protestors at a 2020 racial injustice march, were allegedly cornered by New York City police and then hit with department-issued motorcycles.
The New York Times reported that senator Zellnor Myrie and Assemblywoman Diana Richardson filed a federal civil rights complaint on Monday. Both Plaintiffs stated that the NYPD violated their free speech rights, assaulted them, and arrested Myrie illegally.
The complaint is the most recent in a string of legal actions against police agencies throughout the country, following George Floyd’s death and the 2020 rallies against racial injustice and police brutality.
Furthermore, numerous similar cases against the NYPD are already ongoing, including one brought by the state’s attorney general and a class action lawsuit representing more than 400 protestors.
Diana C. Richardson and Zellnory Y. Marie v. City of New York, et al.
Myrie and Richardson claim in Monday’s complaint that they attended a protest outside Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on May 29. Myrie stated in the lawsuit that he identified himself by wearing a neon green shirt printed with the words “Senator Myrie.”
The two also contacted the district’s commanding officer prior to the protest to inform him of their attendance and were told that NYPD Chief Jeffrey B. Maddrey would be present and available to assist them if needed.
However, at 8 p.m., police announced the protest was over and then ringed the protestors with their bikes, enclosing them. Then, according to the complaint, officers began picking up their NYPD bicycles and assaulted protesters without warning.
Myrie sustained injuries to his back and legs, while Richardson allegedly sustained injuries to his abdomen and pelvis. Both lawmakers apparently received pepper spray to the face, and Myrie was arrested and handcuffed with zip ties.
The event served as a painful and humiliating reminder that adhering to the rules and police orders does not shield Black Americans from police brutality, not even those who have advanced to political office, the lawsuit alleged. Take note as well that both lawmakers are Black.
Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City, Police Commissioner Dermot F. Shea, and 6 other officers are identified as defendants in the complaint.
The mayor has apologized for the NYPD’s actions during the protest, but no serious disciplinary action has been taken against the officers. Moreover, despite the city’s Department of Investigation finding that numerous officers violated demonstrators’ civil rights, the NYPD has refused to take responsibility.
Editor’s Note on Senator Zellnor Myrie NYPD Lawsuit 2021:
This article is written to update you on the recent lawsuit filed against the NYPD as they allegedly assaulted peaceful protestors and 2 New York lawmakers.
Case Name & No.: Diana C. Richardson and Zellnory Y. Marie v. the City of New York, et al. Case No. 21-cv-3609
Jurisdiction: United States District Court – Eastern District Of New York
Products/Services: Police Brutality & Civil Rights
Allegations: Police officers allegedly illegally assaulted the plaintiffs’ and other protestors in a racial injustice march in March 2020
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Suggested Article: Bruce Rauner TCPA Settlement 2021.