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Lawsuits Against NYPD Up 28% This Year

According to the city Comptroller, the cost of NYPD lawsuits in 2010 was $135.8 million.

Lawsuits against the NYPD rose to a record 2,004 cases in the year that ended July 1 – a 28 percent increase over the last fiscal year, according to The New York World.

The recently released Mayor’s Management Report (PDF) shows that cases against the NYPD have seen a 63 percent rise over the last decade, and are not slowing.

In the most recent five years documented by the New York City Comptroller’s office, civil rights claims brought against the NYPD were up 70 percent, from around 1,500 in 2006 to more than 2,600 in 2010, with the cost of the 2010 claims totaling about $78 million.

The office says that in 2010, the NYPD was the city agency with the most tort claims – more than 8,100 – surpassing the Department of Transportation and the Health and Hospitals Corporation, and accounting for $135.8 million of the city’s total expenditures for judgments and settlements.

“All of us have noticed a huge increase in lawsuits against police,” Joel Berger, a civil rights attorney, told the web site. “Whether it’s stop and frisk, marijuana arrests, trespassing – this stuff is completely out of control.”

During May’s budget hearings, City Council members raised concerns about the toll of NYPD judgments and claims on the city’s budget. Police Commissioner Ray Kelly agreed that some of the claims may be based off of stop-and-frisk police questioning tactics, but was firm in his belief that the effects outweigh the risk.

Berger told the World that New York should be following the example of cities like Los Angeles and Chicago, which track litigation data and use it to identify problem officers and issues.

“It is absolutely absurd to respond to an increase in lawsuits by simply hiring more lawyers and defending to the hilt,” he told the web site. “That is such poor public policy. What they should be doing is asking themselves, ‘Why?’”

Joyce Brown October 05, 2012 at 05:09 AM
I am very concerned with the way the police officers from the 79 conduct themselves. I have witnessed and have been involved in at least 3 incidents with officers from that precinct that concerns the heck out of me. What this also tells me is that police officers are not getting the proper training or maybe they are.......I am worried about our children more so from the police than the violence.
BRADY October 05, 2012 at 10:37 PM
Joyce, are you really worried the children more so from the police than the violence !go on the 79 website or the main NYPD website or any website and please tell me who exactly do we have to fear most, i guess you were on vaction during the shootout at marcy and quincy yesterday, and the man who got shot on sunday on nostrand! all these shootings of and by young black men and your worried about the children because of the POLICE! WAKE UP GIRL!

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