A judge has ordered the New York City Police Department to disclose documents and video revealing the surveillance of Black Lives Matter protesters at the city’s Grand Central Terminal in 2014 and 2015.
The New York Daily News reports that protester James Logue challenged the NYPD’s denial of a Freedom of Information Act request that Logue filed after he suspected that police were “compiling dossiers” on individuals who were peacefully protesting at rallies following the police killings of Eric Garner in the city’s borough of Staten Island and of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.
The NYPD monitored the rallies and argued that revealing its tactics would interfere with law-enforcement work.
Yes, because admitting that you are creating files on people who are peacefully exercising their First Amendment rights could definitely interfere with your ability to harass those people and paint them as criminals or aggressive when that is not the case, but please continue, NYPD.
Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Manuel Mendez saw through the bullshit, thankfully, and he ruled that the NYPD could not decline to comply with the FOIA request on such “overly broad” grounds.
In other words, stop being vague and turn over the evidence. We know what you are doing, and now everyone is going to know.
Mendez wrote that NYPD authorities “make blanket assertions and fail to particularize or distinguish their surveillance or undercover techniques and records,” and the department failed to show why the use of redactions could not protect the ongoing investigative work.
Mendez’s ruling, which was signed Monday but only made public on Wednesday, gave the NYPD 30 days to respond to Logue’s FOIA request.
A spokesman for the city’s Law Department told the Daily News, “We are reviewing the decision with the NYPD, and will respond accordingly.”
Read more at the New York Daily News.