Stop False Police Reporting
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STOP FALSE POLICE REPORTING BY CIVILIANS AND LAW ENFORCEMENT
In New York State, Senators, Assembly Members, and the Governor, have received landmark bipartisan support for criminal justice reform legislation, such as the passage of the Eric Garner “chokehold ban, the repeal of 50-A, and also the 911 False Reporting Bill to name a few. These have been some major steps to protect vulnerable individuals who have been the target of false police reporting by civilians.
Christian “the Bird Watcher” Cooper (the victim of Amy Cooper) has become a household name in that he has created a sense of accountability for the Manhattan DA’s office to protect individuals from weaponizing false police reporting based on race.
While we commend our NYS elected officials for taking steps toward protecting a vulnerable group from exploitation and criminalization, the current bills and calls to action does not go far enough to protect other vulnerable groups from false reporting by law enforcement.
With all of these issues considered, we are asking that the 911 False Reporting Bill be expanded to safeguard members in other protected categories so that individual like Ibrahim Barrie, Anthony Dolci, and Tyreik Gilford are also included. Therefore, we are proposing the following changes to the current legislation:
1) Uniformity: Allows charges to be brought against both civilians and officers who knowingly file false police reports
2) Felony for Protected Class: Charges will be upgraded to felony status for both civilians and officers when the false report is made against individuals in protected categories (race, color, ethnicity, social class, physical and mental disability, religion, sexual orientation, gender expression, immigration status, legal status).
3) Transparency: With regards to false accusations and false reporting, once a case is dismissed, the District Attorney must make known to the defendant the reasons the charges were vacated.
4) Officer Accountability
- Following the filing of a police report, during the investigation, the officer’s background should also be investigated, along with all leads (and key exculpatory evidence) when charges are brought against a defendant.
- Each district attorney’s office must have an established and active conviction integrity unit within their department. A yearly report of the conviction reviewed through the conviction integrity unit must be made available to the public.
- When considering overturning a conviction, the weight of the evidence and the standards to overturn convictions must be more clearly defined. Currently, the standards for overturning the conviction is obscure.
5) Immigration/ICE- No deportations while case is pending; yearly disciplinary/personnel checks for immigration/customs/detention/border agents who interface with local police officers in two or more contacts per calendar year; and increased oversight between handoff in cases from NYPD to ICE.
6) Data Management
- NY Courts.Gov: This site contains demographic information for all individuals arrested in NYS. Dismissals should be included on this site. Website should be updated with the previous year’s information by the end of the first quarter of the following year.
- False Report Registry: Any civilian or officer who have been found to have made false police reports should be listed on a state “false report” registry. The names are not to be expunged. This will be public record. If an officer applies for another position as an officer or civil servant in another state or municipality, records of misconduct committed in New York state will be easily available in the consideration for any position that involves serving the public.
This petition is inspired by the lives of three individuals: Ibrahim Barrie, wrongfully deported to Sierra Leone while immigration proceedings were still pending/ICE officials paid a bribe to customs officials in Sierra Leone, not his Country of Origin; Anthony Dolci, wrongfully arrested, placed in a psychiatric facility, and ultimately evicted from his residence in Dorchester Towers based on his LGBTQIA+ status. His property manager filed false allegations stating that he threatened to kill her. Ultimately the charges were dropped. This case was an example of a “Karen”; Tyreik Gilford, a parolee, was sentenced to serve 6 years in prison for a crime that he did not commit. Exculpatory evidence including financial documents, witnesses, and a confession by an unassociated co-defendant (who took the stand) was disregarded at trial.
We are asking for your support by signing this petition. It is our goal to better protect individuals and families from false police reporting by a civilian or a law enforcement officer. With the passage of this bill, NYS will have legislation from the voices of those that have been deeply impacted by false police reporting.
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Thank you to everyone for helping us in our fight for legislative reform and social justice.
Anthony Dolci and Dr. Tawanna Gilford
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