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NYCLU publishes 300,000 complaints against NYPD police

The New York fraction of the ACLU has published a trove of 300,000 complaints made against NYPD officers spanning more than 20 years. 

The complaints include thousands that allege excessive use of force, sexual abuse and misconduct by 82,000 police officers. 

They are only complaints that the Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB) has investigated fully and reached a conclusion on. 

Of the 323,000 reports that were made and investigated, only 20,000 were found to be substantiated. 

There were 1,700 complaints of chokeholds, 2,861 of people being dragged, and 10,000 of use of force. 

Sexual misconduct; 12 ‘gestures’, 12 verbal harassment, 32 of sexual proposition, three of sexually motivated strip searches, 97 sexist remarks, 29 complaints of sexual humiliation, and nearly 500 of offensive language of a sexual nature. 

The documents were published online on Thursday afternoon after a judge allowed them to become public. 

The NYPD unions had tried to block their release, claiming they would put the lives of thousands of officers in danger. 

Roughly a third of the complaints were found to be unsubstantiated. 

More than 50,000 of the cops were exonerated and 26,000 of the complaints were unfounded, the review board found.

In 1,293 cases, the complaint was found to be substantiated, no punishment was given to the offending officer. 

Most of the complaints (123,000) were filed under the category of abuse of authority. 

The category with the fewest complaints (10,814) was for abusive language.

The full list of complaints can be found here on the NYCLU website. 

Other more detailed information is on the CRRB website.  

‘All New Yorkers have a right to transparency through FOIL,’ CCRB Chairman Fred Davie said. 

‘The CCRB will hold paramount the people’s right to know how their communities are policed, while continuing to adhere to FOIL and other legal requirements,’ he added.

In July, after Mayor de Blasio announced the documents would become public. 

The Sergeants Benevolent Association, one of the largest police unions, fought it, filing a lawsuit in which they claimed the release of the papers put them in harm’s way at a time when it seemed like the entire nation were anti-police in the wake of George Floyd’s killing in Minneapolis at the end of May.

Judge Katherine Polk Failla ruled on July 28 that they could become public. 

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