(trigger warning for racism, police brutality)
Two NYPD officers who pleaded guilty to dumping a teenager half-naked near a Staten Island swamp, but avoided significant punishment, have agreed to pay $5,000 each in reparations.
In 2007, officers Thomas Elliassen and Richard Danese had suspected Rayshawn Moreno, who was 14-years old at the time, of throwing eggs at passing cars on Halloween night and placed him into their patrol car.
They then drove to a swamp in Staten Island where they stripped Moreno of his shirt and shoes, demanding he lie facedown on a deserted roadway. Elliassen and Danese proceeded to kick the teenager and eventually left him stranded.
The victim was forced to walk a mile alongside railroad tracks to finally receive help.
Prosecutors say the officers also hurled racial slurs at Moreno, who is black, during the abuse.
The officers pleaded guilty, but escaped jail because Moreno refused to testify in court. Instead, Elliassen and Danese’s felony charges were relegated to violations and they were assigned to modified duty.
The Daily News reports that since the horrific incident, Moreno has been arrested eight times for a range of criminal activities including robbery, drugs, and weapons possession.
This is an outrage.
This is the financial worth of the health, safety and dignity of a Black child, according to our justice system.