A Brooklyn man was recently awarded a $100,000 verdict as a result of a case of excessive force in New York City. 40-year old Rodger Rickettes was forcibly detained by two NYPD officers after walking between cars on the subway in Brooklyn. The officers in question pushed him to the ground and pepper sprayed him. Rickettes also suffered a broken finger as a result of the altercation. The court agreed with Rickettes and his attorney that at least one of the officers in question went too far, resulting in injuries that severely hampered the victim's ability to support himself financially.
Rickettes's lawyer successfully argued that the one of the officers, Daniel Reyes, used excessive force when subduing Rickettes, whom lawyers say has a fifth-grade education and couldn't understand why officers were detaining him. Rickettes, who works as a dishwasher, sits in the same subway seat every night on his ride home. He claims that's simply what he was doing when the two cops pulled him out of the train at Franklin Ave. station.
Police reports state that the victim became combative when police began questioning him and told him that he would be issued a summons for walking between subway cars.
According to transcripts, Officer Reyes struck Rickettes with his baton after a knife fell from the victim's pocket during questioning. Reports also show that Rickettes was having difficulty breathing after being pepper sprayed and allegedly was denied treatment when he asked an officer for help.
Rickettes was awarded $50,000 for lost wages, $30,000 for pain and suffering, and an additional $20,000 to cover his medical expenses.
No one denies that New York City Police officers are under tremendous stress when on the job. However, striking an individual with a baton and breaking his finger was not an appropriate response to the situation.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of police brutality, contact a New York City excessive force attorney immediately. Call the Law Offices of Nussin S. Fogel for a free consultation at (800) 734-9338 or (212) 385-1122 to learn your rights.