An NYPD officer admitted that he told a 13-year-old boy that he was "crying like a little girl" after he was handcuffed and placed in the back of a police cruiser during a stop-and-frisk encounter in Harlem.

Officer Brian Dennis testified today during the federal stop-and-frisk trial that on the night of March 20, 2010, he stopped Devin Almonor several blocks from his Harlem home, frisked him, handcuffed him, and placed him in the back of his car, but not under arrest. Dennis testified that he stopped Almonor because he suspected he was carrying a weapon, which later proved false. "I said something like, 'A little while ago you were struggling with me in the street, you had an attitude…now you're crying like a little girl,' " Dennis said. When asked by a City attorney if that was appropriate, Dennis replied, "Looking back, no."

Dennis, a 19-year veteran of the NYPD, did not dispute that Almonor said phrases like, "Leave me alone," and "I'm going home," while he was being detained. Almonor's male friend wasn't searched, and Dennis testified that he didn't even ask for his name.

Dennis's supervisor, Lieutenant Jonathan Korabel, who was driving the unmarked police vehicle while Dennis was sitting next to the boy in the back seat, gave Dennis high marks on a progress report during the period that covered the encounter. "PO Dennis is always courteous and respectful when dealing with the public," Korabel wrote.

This morning's testimony, the sixth day of the landmark trial on one of the NYPD's most reviled and widely-used tactics, revolved around the many discrepancies, written and oral, in Dennis's and Korabel's accounts of why they stopped Almonor, whose parents were later arrested at the 30th Precinct during an altercation with officers.

Dennis testified that Almonor gave evasive answers to his questions after he was handcuffed ("I wasn't satisfied with the answers he was giving me"), but failed to note any of that on the resulting paper trail that this was the case. He didn't check the box noting that Almonor had a "suspicious bulge" on the UF250 form officers are required to fill out after a stop, but alleged he did in another, computer-based report. Dennis also denied that Almonor fought the officers: "Not my definition of fighting, no."

Korabel's testimony: "[Almonor] was fighting with us, he was screaming and causing alarm." Plaintiffs' attorney Jenn Borchetta asked Korabel if he actually witnessed the boy punch or slap anyone. "I didn't see him punch us." Borchetta asked again, looking for a yes or no answer, and Korabel again repeated, "I didn't see him punch us."

Finally Judge Shira Scheindlin intervened: "Did you see him punch or slap anyone?" Korabel's response: "No."

"It was clear that the officers had no legitimate bearing to stop [Almonor]," the plaintiffs' lead attorney, Darius Charney, of the Center for Constitutional Rights, told reporters outside the courthouse. "My interpretation is that officers can't seem to get their stories straight that would establish the reasonable suspicion necessary to make the stop," Charney said, noting that the issue was systematic. "This is why you need a monitor [for the NYPD]—who's to say that they're not just making all this up?"

Useful details on the stop are absent from Dennis's logbook, for until earlier this month, writing a more thorough account of each stop-and-frisk was merely optional for officers. Still, Dennis's scant description of his stop with Almonor didn't even meet the paltry department standards of the time.

When asked if he was aware that the department required more of him with regard to his log entry that night, Dennis said that he was. "When did you come to that realization?" Judge Scheindlin asked. "In the police academy," Dennis replied.