Shameful Privileges: NYPD's Officer Frascatore Who Assaulted James Blake Serial Abuser

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Blake -- assaulted for Standing-still-while-Black

[Speaking Truth To Power]

On Monday, retired tennis player James Blake met with Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton to discuss police brutality—in the aftermath of the circumstances that led to him being tackled and thrown to the ground while standing outside the Grand Hyatt Hotel by Officer James Frascatore.

According to the mayor, they had a “productive conversation” with Mr. Blake about “strengthening the relationship between police and communities across the city.”

This is nice rhetoric. But how is that going to happen when the NYPD still engages in racially profiling Black people to procure tickets and summons to make revenue off Black people, which, eventually leads to the death of someone like say Eric Garner?

Mayor de Blasio and Commissioner Bill Bratton released a joint statement saying: “This afternoon, we had a productive conversation with Mr. Blake about strengthening the relationship between police and communities across our city. It was based on a shared commitment to accountability and a desire to build trust. We pledged a fair and expeditious investigation into his case, and to find further common ground as we continue the work of reform.”

If they are serious about “reform” they would immediately cease-and-desist in requiring cops to fulfill quotas—they know are meant to punish Black people, economically. But it’s obvious they won’t do that until we the people force their hand. In fact, Mayor de Blasio seems to have gotten the message, from the bullies in the NYPD, to speak softly when he is speaking about police brutality.

Worse of all, the man the mayor hired to run the NYPD has helped to undermine the promises Mr. de Blasio made to all the Black and Latino voters who supported him because they expected him to take concrete steps to change the racial policing in the NYPD. Remember when Bratton claimed the murders of two police were a “direct spinoff” of peaceful protests against police murderers in the wake of the Eric Garner lynch-hold killing?

This baseless charge is now being echoed by Republican presidential pretenders who defamed the Black Lives Matter movement by trying to link them to a few recent killings of cops. In the universe these people live in murderous cops are never denounced—but peaceful protesters are smeared and vilified by these upstanding “law and order” politicians.

Information is now being revealed that Officer Frascatore has a pattern of brutalizing people— he reportedly has five complaints against him in the last seven months, according to the records of the Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB.)

If this is the case, why is this man still a member of the NYPD?

Mr. Blake was allegedly attacked because the police were supposedly looking for someone who perpetrated credit card fraud. The blatant brutality Officer Frascatore inflicted on Blake should’ve already led to his immediate expulsion from the NYPD—if the NYPD was a police department of any integrity.

Mayor Bill de Blasio and Commissioner Bill Bratton have both apologized to Mr. James for the conduct of this unapologetic police officer. Why are they apologizing and not this thug who is still donning the NYPD uniform? The best apology would be for this officer to be removed from the force.Mr. James hit on important issues: citing that these kinds of police brutality incidents happen with too much frequency mostly to those who, unlike himself, have no celebrity name recognition.

In fact, last February an 11-year-old Bronx girl was assaulted in a similar manner—by an NYPD lieutenant. Is there any wonder why rank-and-file officers perpetrate acts of unprovoked aggression on African-Americans and Latinos?

Commissioner Bratton said he has “concerns about the take-down” and what “I witnessed on the video…the inappropriateness of the amount of force that was used during the arrest.” The commissioner also said the arrest of Mr. Blake "should not have happened." But there are many such arrests—not to mention brutalization of African-Americans—that also should never have happened.

Officer Frascatore also allegedly tried to cover-up his assault of Mr. Blake by not informing his superiors of the incident. In fact, NYPD brass claimed they only became aware of the details of Frascatore’s abuse of Blake after the tennis star told the details to the news media.

“My concern is that after the release, there’s department protocols that should have been followed but apparently were not,” Mr. Bratton said. “Mr. Blake has made a number of comments to the press. That’s how we became aware of the matter.”

In other words, if we believe the NYPD brass, Officer Frascatore is not just a bully in a badge but an undignified liar as well. So, why is this disgrace just doing desk-duty instead of being showed the door? How can any honest New Yorker have faith in the NYPD when they harbor these kinds of brutes in their police department?

Part of the problem here is: the police unions have zero integrity and defend the most indefensible outrages committed. If we look at the terrible posture of those in leadership positions in the police it is clearly indicative of why we have such dangerous loose cannons in the NYPD. It matters not what horrible offences their officers commit, the unions always circle the wagons.

Remember how Pat Lynch defended the actions of Officer Daniel Pantaleo after he placed Eric Garner in a lynch-hold and choked the life out of him? According to Lynch, Garner caused his own death and Pantaleo did just what he was supposed to do.

This thinking shows the lack of concern they have for Back lives.

In this current case, Lynch claimed “placing this officer on modified duty is premature and unwarranted.” Officer Frascatore assaulted an innocent man, who wasn’t even given a chance to resist arrest—and then Frascatore tried to conceal his wrongdoing, according to NYPD brass. If Mr. Lynch really thinks that a slap-on-the-wrist reprimand, like desk-duty, is “premature,” then is there any wonder why the NYPD’s credibility is at an all-time low?

Let’s also keep this in mind: the NYPD said they were seeking someone who committed credit card fraud. Let’s suppose Officer Frascatore in fact identified the right suspect wouldn’t his actions have still been wrong, since he never identified himself and since there was no resistance? If this is the kind of violence that an officer metes out for a non-violent offense, can you imagine what kind of violence they use for high crimes?

Mayor de Blasio and Commissioner Bratton have shown little concrete action in changing the awful way the NYPD conducts policing against African-Americans—and what we are seeing is the latest example of a public relation campaign where we get all talk and no action. What we need to see is tangible policy changes. Mayor de Blasio must be forced to give us a specific plan on how he intends to institute meaningful change.

But this is where Black America always gets betrayed by politicians—especially, those who are supposed to be “progressive” Whites. The lack of any specifics to eradicate racial policing can be seen, nationwide, in how all of these politicians dance around this issue. For over a year, since the killings of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, Capitol Hill politicians have been acting like they are all dumb, deaf and blind to the institutional racism in police departments.

The fact that they don’t want to address this issue can be seen in the way not one question was asked, during the recent Republican presidential debate, by the, “objective,” CNN moderators about racial policing in America—even though it is on the minds of many Americans, Black and White.

 

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