While Bronx resident Nicholas Peart (pictured left) testified at Manhattan Criminal Court Tuesday, he broke down in tears as he recounted his experience with the city’s maligned stop-and-frisk policy, according to the New York Daily News.
“I felt criminalized,” Peart, who is Black, said. “I felt degraded…. I was going to the bodega. It was very upsetting.”
Peart was describing his experience when he went to buy milk for his family. At the time, two officers stopped him near his home and then reportedly took his keys and entered his apartment. The other officer reportedly removed his sneakers and asked if he had any marijuana on him.
Peart didn’t have any contraband on him at the time.
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His experience was exacerbated by the fact that Peart has to care for his three siblings after their mother died from cancer in 2011.
Peart is part of the original class-action lawsuit brought on by four Black New Yorkers in 2008, anchored by the Center For Constitutional Rights. The suit seeks to make stop and frisk unconstitutional and mandate that officers fill out paperwork whenever they frisk New Yorkers.