3 black detectives: NYPD didn't promote us because of race

2017-09-26 18:35
NYPD badge. (AFP)

NYPD badge. (AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

New York — Three black detectives in the New York Police Department's intelligence division filed a federal lawsuit against the department on Monday, saying they were denied promotions because of their race and less-qualified white officers were promoted instead.

The detectives joined the unit, which is responsible for investigating terrorism and other crimes, in 2001. They said they had track records of solid investigative work, recommendations from their superiors and stellar performance reviews.

They said they were passed over for promotions, while supervisors elevated white, less-experienced detectives who performed worse.

The three said they believe they were passed over because they are black. Most of the officers in the division are white, as are all the higher-ranking officers.

Police department officials said a review of a recent 10-year period showed the opposite, that lower-ranking black detectives in the unit were promoted faster than their colleagues.

Higher-ranking detectives make about $30 000 more than lower-ranked ones.

The black detectives' lawsuit, which seeks class action status, said there's a disparity between the percentage of black officers in the police force in general and within the intelligence division.

At the time they filed a complaint, 6% of the division personnel was black. Overall, 44% of the department is white, 10%  black, 21% Hispanic and 7% Asian.

Promotions and opportunities 

The lawsuit seeks retroactive promotions for the plaintiffs and changes to the police department's promotion procedures.

"The NYPD professes that promotions are the result of merit alone," the lawsuit said. "But the NYPD has no structured policy or procedure governing the promotions process for detectives."

The detectives, Theodore Coleman, Jon McCollum and Roland Stephens, filed a 2011 complaint with the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which found in 2016 that black detectives don't get equal treatment.

The commission found the officers in the unit and black detectives generally "received lesser and later opportunities for promotion consistent with their qualifications".

The Department of Justice declined to file a civil rights lawsuit. The New York Civil Liberties Union took up the case. NYPD officials said they have been aware of the allegations for some time.

"Following the EEOC's investigation, the NYPD presented information on promotions and diversity within the Intelligence Bureau to the Department of Justice. After a review [of] this, DOJ declined to pursue the case," said Peter Donald, an assistant commissioner with the department's public information unit.

The officers have since retired.

After the September 11, 2001, attacks, the NYPD used its intelligence division to detect terror threats by cultivating informants and conducting surveillance in Muslim communities.

The practice became the subject of a series of articles by The Associated Press revealing that the intelligence division had infiltrated dozens of mosques and Muslim student groups and investigated hundreds.

The NYPD is the nation's largest police department, with 36 000 officers. The second-largest is Chicago, with about 13 000.

Read more on:    nypd  |  us

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/Sport
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.