New York City controller William Thompson released a report that the city paid out $35.2 million in settlements last year a 40 percent jump from just the previous year. Police procedures, such as false arrests and excessive force, are costing the taxpayers heavily in a time when all efforts and sacrifices must be made to use taxpayer money for critical services. It is also putting a great burden in defendants needing to seek experienced New York federal offense lawyers.
The payout number is only going to grow as a record number of lawsuits were filed last year against the NYPD for wrongful convictions involving drug crimes in New York and other criminal offenses.
Donna Lieberman, Executive Director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, said, ‘These are remarkable increases. They raise serious questions as to whether the NYPD is out of control.”
Complaints against the NYPD have climbed 22 percent in the last 10 years to a record 6,274 complaints last year.
Reports say that New York City paid out $536.9 in settlements, a 2 percent increase from the previous year.
Jeffrey Cofield said, “I wanted to be compensated because I served time in prison, but I feel like more should have been done to correct the officers’ behavior.” Cofield got $400,000 last year after doing eight months in jail on false drug possession charges.
Cofield added, “At the end of the day, the city paid for their mistake, not the officers.”
A man from Brooklyn Marshall Nuñez got the biggest settlement last year at $1.25 million for a false rape arrest. A DNA test proved him innocent.
Nuñez lawyer Michael Rubin said, “I only wish it was bigger. I think there are a lot more innocent people in jail than we think and a lot more confessions that are not as willful as we think.”
If you have been falsely accused any serious crime in New York it is imperative that you hire a skilled and experienced New York criminal defense attorney. No matter what the circumstances, you may be facing serious jail time and life changing decisions.