The New York Police Department’s controversial “Stop-And-Frisk” program has been met with resistance by citizens and public officials alike, who both say the practice borders on harassment and racist policies. In 2011 alone, nearly 700,000 stops were made with a staggering 87 percent of those individuals being Black or Hispanic. To add insult, over 80 percent of the stopped individuals were innocent.
The tactic is coming under fire once again, this after an exclusive audio obtained by The Nation features what’s thought to be the only known audio recording of a “stop-and-frisk” maneuver in action. Warning: the language in the clip is violent and offensive.
In June of 2011, a Harlem teenager by the name of Alvin grew tired of the oppressive police tactics and decided to record an instance of him being stopped by NYPD. What the audio reveals is a shocking exchange of words between the young man and the police, with the cops using racial slurs and threatening bodily harm.
On the audio, an officer can be heard saying to Alvin “Oh, you again” to which the teen responds “I just got stopped two blocks ago.” Further along in the recording, one of the officers accuses the teen of looking suspicious although they offer no other reason for stopping him. An officer then says because Alvin was walking up the street with his hood on and looking back at the officers led them to believe he was involved in criminal activity.
Suddenly, the officer threatens to smack the boy and the situation escalates from there. When Alvin asks what he’s being arrested for, one of the officers answers, “ For being a f—ing mutt.” One of the officers then roughs the boy up then says, “Dude, I’m gonna break your f—ing arm, then I’m gonna punch you in the f—ing face.”
The Nation interviewed Alvin and he explained how the incident went down.
“I was walking home from my girlfriend’s house and a cop car passed me. Couple of seconds later, I heard the car turn around and they hopped out, they all just jumped out the car,” said Alvin. “I decided to record it because I was getting stopped a lot and I didn’t have any evidence of the cops being disrespectful. I hit the button and recorded the whole thing.”
For more on this story, watch the video below from The Nation where two veteran officers explain that NYPD officials place them under pressure to use the bullying tactic:
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Photo: The Nation