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City Paid Out Almost $68 Million in Lawsuits Alleging Police Misconduct So Far This Year

Payouts for the First Seven Months of 2022 Already Surpass Calendar Year 2020

August 5, 2022 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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At this Rate, the Total Payouts from Litigation for 2022 Could Potentially Balloon to Over $115 Million

Brooklyn NYPD Officer Pedro Rodriguez was involved in one of the largest payouts.

The Legal Aid Society released an analysis of data revealing that the City paid out $67,663,389 million in lawsuits alleging police misconduct from January 1 to July 26, 2022. This amount surpasses the $62,093,491 paid out on litigation in all of 2020 and only falls roughly $624,000 short of the litigation payout for the entirety of 2019. At this rate, the City could potentially payout over $115 million in lawsuits alleging police misconduct for calendar year 2022.

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Also, these payouts do not account for matters that were settled with the Office of the New York City Comptroller prior to formal litigation.

Period                                     Total Lawsuits Disposed       Payout                      

Calendar Year 2019 1222 $68,287,242
Calendar Year 2020 930 $62,093,491
Calendar Year 2021 751 $87,535,727
January 1 – July 26, 2022 557 $67,663,389

One of the largest payouts this period involves New York City Police Department (NYPD) officers Pedro Rodriguez and Pavel N. Kuznetsov, who were sued for leaving a young New Yorker paralyzed, according to a lawsuit which settled for $12 million this past July.

One of those NYPD officers, Pedro Rodriguez, is still employed at the 72nd Precinct in Sunset Park in Brooklyn, even though he has a long history of substantiated and documented NYPD allegations.

Rodriguez, per an NYPD memo, was also previously involved in a 2009 incident in which he allegedly assaulted the director of his son’s little league, which resulted in a $50,000 settlement, and was subsequently placed on dismissal probation for one year. Rodriguez also has a long history of substantiated NYPD allegations, and despite this history of misconduct, which stretches back more than a decade, Rodriguez is still employed by the NYPD at the 72nd Precinct.

Related Article: New NYPD Inspector General Faces Department Resistant to Recommended Reforms

“The sad truth is that while the City doles out tens of millions of dollars each year on police misconduct lawsuits, the overwhelming majority of the officers involved in these lawsuits likely received only a slap on the wrist, if any discipline at all,” said Jennvine Wong, staff attorney with the Criminal Defense Practice’s Special Litigation Unit at The Legal Aid Society. “Simply put, officers who commit egregious acts of misconduct should not be allowed to police our clients’ neighborhoods. Not only does this inaction further the culture of impunity that thrives at precincts throughout New York City, but it costs taxpayers millions of dollars that would be better spent on services for vulnerable communities.”

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