Multiple NYPD Officers Say They Were Forced To Target Black & Latino Subway Riders In Discrimination Lawsuit

December 9, 2019  |  

Funeral Held For NYPD Detective Killed During Attempted Robbery In Queens

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Four Black and Hispanic NYPD officers unveiled startling accusations as part of a discrimination lawsuit filed against one of the largest law enforcement agencies in the United States.

In a suit obtained by The New York Times, the officers claim that between 2011 and 2015, under the command of Constantin Tsacha, cops who oversaw a transit district located in South Brooklyn were told to target Black and Hispanic patrons over white and Asian riders. In addition to the four officers, The Times reports that more than half a dozen officers submitted written affidavits, six of them corroborating that they were also instructed to adhere to Tsacha’s race-based commands.

“I got tired of hunting Black and Hispanic people because of arrest quotas,” a former cop named Christopher LaForce, said in his affidavit.

Tsacha was recently promoted to the second-in-command of policing the subway system throughout Brooklyn, making him second in command of the MTA’s law enforcement.

In the affidavits, officers said that “different enforcement standards” were applied across four South Brooklyn neighborhoods in Transit District 34. According to LaForce, Tsacha would often redirect officers to stations that were located in neighborhoods with large Black and Hispanic populations. Other officers alleged they were required to target Black men with visible tattoos and check them for warrants.

“Tsachas would get angry if you tried to patrol subway stations in predominately white or Asian neighborhoods,” LaForce continued.

Lt. Edward Raymond, one officer who is suing the NYPD, claims he faced retaliation and was barred from receiving a promotion for failing to make arrests based on Tsacha’s alleged quota system.
The issue highlights a highly contentious point debated in the social sphere, regarding over-policing residents and issuing tickets and arrests on fare evasion and low-level offenses committed on the trains and buses under the jurisdiction of the Metropolitan Transit Authority.
The NYPD has long-held that they do not make arrests based on race, however, the statistics surrounding arrests prove otherwise. That coupled with police tactics which disproportionately affect brown and Black residents, including the broken windows policy and stop and frisk, adds validity to the race based claims.
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