NYPD video hitting man on subway attracts attention of local leaders, community

By Kristina Sgueglia, Mirna Alsharif and Alisha Ebrahimji, CNN

(CNN) – Circulating video of a man who was tased by police after saying he helped another passenger escape a New York subway ticket has caught the attention of local politicians and officials community.

On July 6, an individual opened an exit door for an acquaintance to enter the 116th Street subway system, “bypassing the fare,” according to a statement accompanied by a video posted by NYPD News on Twitter the 14th of July.

Body-worn camera footage shows the man cursing officers, refusing to get off the train and threatening them. With additional officers at the scene, the man continued to resist his arrest, prompting use a Taser gun, “the NYPD News release said. .

Part of the exchange can be seen in a body camera video clip shared by NYPD News.

The video does not show any part of the altercation between the man and the police or the tasing. A 22-second clip shows a man yelling curses at officers, whose faces have been blurred by the NYPD.

An officer can be heard responding “we’re not leaving”, “okay” and “don’t worry about this” as the man swears “F *** k the police”.

When contacted by CNN, the NYPD did not provide a full version of the body camera video.

But video of an eyewitness shared on Twitter on Wednesday by Democratic City Council candidate Anthony Beckford shows other parts of the exchange.

Surrounded by several NYPD agents, the man seems to be starting to resist his arrest. After he gets into a fight with officers, they seem to grab hold of him, and that’s when he gets knocked down.

Beckford says a member of the community shared the viewer’s video with him and claimed that although police knew the man had paid his own costs, they approached him because he “provoked” the police. While police did not specifically respond to questions regarding this claim, they do say the individual opened a way out for an acquaintance to enter.

The suspect, David Crowell, 29, faces charges of third degree threat, second degree harassment, resisting arrest and second degree obstruction of government administration, according to the prosecutor’s office of the Manhattan district. He is not charged with anything related to tariff fraud.

Crowell was arraigned on July 7 and the judge ordered a supervised release. His next court date is Aug. 5, according to the district attorney’s office.

Crowell’s attorney Bethany Bonsu said the accusations were “absolutely absurd”. Bonsu said the New York Police Department’s remarks about his client were personality assassination attempts, adding “this is a classic example of the NYPD using excessive force on black people.”

Bonsu declined to comment on any of the factual issues in the case, but said his client had not made a case yet. She told the New York Times that Crowell let her cousin through the door and also paid for his ticket after letting him through.

CNN has contacted the Metropolitan Transit Authority for comment.

Community leaders react to the incident

Beckford, who is also president and co-founder of Black Lives Matter Brooklyn, told CNN: “This is a clear example of abuse of power and further validates calls for justice and accountability.”

He calls for the arrest of the officers involved and for the Manhattan District Attorney to drop all charges against the accused.

“Anything less will be seen as a slap in the face for black and brown New Yorkers who want to live their lives free from constant police violence. If we are to fight violence, let’s make sure we also fight police violence, “Beckford said.

Asked about the viral video at a press conference on the price of metro tickets on Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said that although he had not seen it, he was “concerned” that he had heard some.

“From what I understand from the NYPD body camera footage, the person involved was very aggressive in some ways, even threatening the police and that is just not acceptable either,” he said. .

“Having said that, we are very clear about the training of our officers, the goal is to defuse, and it is clear here that we did not end up with a de-escalation situation. So this needs to be looked at carefully to see what that could be done differently in the future. “

De Blasio also said that “tariff fraud is not acceptable”. CNN followed an updated statement from the mayor.

CNN has also reached out to Democratic mayoral candidate Eric Adams, a retired NYPD captain, whose campaign has touted his skills to fight crime in the city.

Former mayoral candidate Maya Wiley, who conceded Adams in the primary, tweeted in response at Beckford’s post in the video; “This is NOT public safety. There are a lot of police escalating an incident that, at most, would have been a summons. More police in the subway does not increase public safety for everyone.”

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