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Sunday, November 28, 2010

NYPD Takes Immediate Action After Officer Demands Jewish Pedestrian Write On Shabbos

A troubling incident occurred on Friday night between an NYPD Officer, and a member of Brooklyn’s Orthodox Jewish Community, has learned exclusively.

On Friday night, and individual was walking to his home (in the southern part of Brooklyn) and had just crossed a street, when he was stopped by two officers in a marked patrol car. The asked him for his identification. He asked why they wanted it, and the officers responded that they wanted to issue him a summons for J-Walking. He responded that it was Shabbos, and he does not carry any identification with him. The officers responded that if he does not give them an ID, they will be placing him under arrest. He told the officers that he lived a half a block away, and they can meet him at his home and take his ID and write the summons there. They refused, and instead forced the individual to write his name and address on a paper. They told him, if he refuses, they will arrest him. Fearing spending Shabbos in jail, with his family not knowing where he was, the individual followed their orders.

Minutes after Shabbos, the individual reached out to leading Jewish community NYPD Liaisons, who in turn reached out to the top NYPD brass covering the area. As was expected they took the story very seriously, and immediately got to work.

Brooklyn South Chief Joseph Fox,along with the Commanding Officer of the precinct must be publicly commended for their personal involvement, and for taking appropriate action, for many hours on Saturday night. Additionally, members of the NYPD’s Community Affairs Unit were heavily involved, and were busy with this until well past midnight. We have been told that the officers have been questioned, and an investigation into the exact details of the incident is underway.

Although this story is troubling, since it is against Jewish law to write on Shabbos, it also raises eyebrows as to what prompted an officer to write a summons for J-Walking, something which is practically never done.

Despite this incident, it should be noted that the NYPD has an excellent relationship with the Orthodox Community, and an incident like this has never before happened.

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