New York City Police officer Michael Daragjati was casually bragging to a friend about falsely charging a black man with resisting arrest, when, unbeknownst to him, he was recorded saying "I fried another ni—er." He's now been charged with a federal civil rights violation and reignited a conversation about the NYPD's controversial (that's being gentle — some would say totally racist) stop-and-frisk program:
A search of the man revealed no contraband, but after he complained about his treatment and asked for the officer's badge number, Officer Daragjati arrested him and charged him with resisting arrest, telling him that he did not like being disrespected, prosecutors said.
Officer Daragjati then wrote in a police report that the man had flailed his arms and kicked his legs during the arrest, causing the man to be detained for about 36 hours, according to a federal complaint.
The next day, the government intercepted a phone call between Officer Daragjati and a female friend in which the officer complained that he had just gotten out of court on the stop-and-frisk case, but that it had been worth the hassle.
"I sat there for a couple of hours by the time I got it all done but, fried another nigger," the officer says on a transcript provided by prosecutors. "What?" The woman asks. Officer Daragjati uses the same phrase and then adds, "no big deal." The woman laughs.
Officer Daragjati was charged with a misdemeanor civil rights violation that carries a sentence of up to a year in prison and a fine of up to $100,000, prosecutors said.
Source: the New York Times.
As ColorLines pointed out today, allegations of discriminatory conduct in NYPD's stop-and-frisk program are nothing new. A New York Times investigation last year found that in Brooklyn's Brownsville neighborhood, a predominantly African-American community that's dense with public housing, 93 out of every 100 residents were stopped by police. While many will be thrilled to hear that Daragiati himself is being "fried" (albeit only with a misdemeanor), the real story about the recording of his unconscionable conduct is that, for many, it wasn't surprising in the least.
In other news: VIDEO: GOP Candidates on Occupy Wall Street.