A police officer patrolling Coney Island knocked a 23-year-old man to the ground, dragged him around and later threatened him, according to Brooklyn prosecutors.
After the victim reported the assault, the police officer, O'Keefe Thompson, allegedly searched for him in his neighborhood, flashed his gun and yelled, "Why are you shitting on my name? Do you know what I'm going to do to you?"
"Police officers risk their lives every day to keep us all safe. However, this defendant crossed the line by allegedly assaulting a man and later threatening him. Such conduct is not only unacceptable, it undermines public trust in our justice system and will not be tolerated in Brooklyn," said acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez.
The incident unfolded over the summer. According to prosecutors, on July 8, 2017, just after midnight, Raymond Crespo, 23, and a friend were standing near Mermaid Avenue and West 32nd Street when the friend knocked a plastic cup out of his hand. Thompson allegedly demanded that Crespo pick up the cup, but Crespo refused, which led to an argument. From the Brooklyn D.A.'s press release:
It is alleged that Thompson then threw Crespo against the doorway of a nearby bodega, knocking him to the ground, before dragging him out onto the sidewalk.
It is further alleged that Crespo was motionless for a few seconds when Thompson grabbed him again, dragged him several more feet and dropped him to the ground again before stating, in sum and substance, “Don’t you know that I’m from the Ville (referring to Brownsville)?” The incident was captured on surveillance video. Following the incident, the victim went home, went to sleep and subsequently woke up with a swollen face and a headache. The victim dialed 911and was taken to Coney Island Hospital, where he was treated for swelling and bruising to the face, as well as for possible concussion symptoms. After the victim was discharged from the hospital, he filed a complaint against the defendant later that same day.
According to the investigation, the defendant was assigned the evening tour from July 8, 2017 to July 9, 2017. At the end of his tour, at approximately 2:30 a.m. on July 9, 2017, the defendant went to the victim’s neighborhood, in plainclothes, looking for him. Once the defendant spotted the victim, the defendant allegedly confronted the victim, raised his shirt and displayed a gun in his waistband to the victim, and stated, in sum and substance, “Why are you shitting on my name? Do you know what I’m going to do to you?” A crowd of bystanders successfully pushed the defendant away from the victim. This incident was also captured on surveillance video.
The Daily News has a photograph of Crespo's battered face; Crespo recalled that Thompson "grabbed me, started swinging on me, and I’m fighting to stay in the store, mind you. As soon as I let go of the gate, I hit it on the right side of my eye. And boom, I let go of the door, I come outside and he’s dragging me all through the same area."
Thompson, who surrendered earlier today, was indicted on one count of intimidating a witness, two counts of third-degree assault and two counts of official misconduct was released on his own recognizance. His next court date is November 29, 2017.