Two New York City Police Department officers accused of kidnapping and raping an 18-year-old young woman from Brooklyn, N.Y., in September will face a trial before their peers before their criminal trial.
The New York Daily News reports that the move is unusual, noting that NYPD internal trials typically occur after a criminal conviction has been reached.
As the Daily News explains:
Typically, the NYPD holds off on taking disciplinary action until the conclusion of any criminal proceeding.
That’s done because when a cop is grilled by Internal Affairs, they are compelled to answer all questions under threat of termination, and anything the cop says can’t be used in a criminal case.
But [Officers] Martins and Hall refused to answer any questions in their Internal Affairs interviews—so the NYPD set a Tuesday date in the department’s trial room.
The police officers in question, Eddie Martins and Richard Hall, have been indicted on 50 counts, including rape, kidnapping, criminal sex act and official misconduct charges. But while both of them have been demoted from the rank of detective, they are still on the NYPD payroll.
The 18-year-old’s attorney, Michael David, says that the department trial will fast-track efforts to fire the two demoted detectives.
“We’ve always called for their firing from the time this thing happened,” David said.
Another source told the Daily News that Hall and Martins “know they’re fucked.”
It’s worth recapping just how heinous prosecutors’ charges against the two former detectives are. On Sept. 15, prosecutors charge, Martins and Hall were working an undercover “buy and bust” operation when they broke away to pull over a car full of teens, including the 18-year-old victim. The officers arrested her after she admitted to having some marijuana and two anti-anxiety pills in the car, authorities say.
After handcuffing her, Martins forced the teen into performing oral sex on him in the back seat of the police van, prosecutors say. They say he also raped her vaginally. Martins’ partner, Hall, drove and watched from the rearview mirror before switching with Martins in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn, authorities say. Afterward, the cops dropped the teen off in Brooklyn’s Coney Island section with her pills and warned her not to tell anyone what happened.
Martins is free on $250,000; Hall, a married father of two, on $150,000 bail. The officers have pleaded not guilty to the charges, and maintain that the sex acts were consensual.
The NYPD trial date is set for Nov. 7.
Read more at the Nw York Daily News.