A police officer in the New York Police Department (NYPD) was convicted of planting drugs on innocent people, which caused them to be arrested for a href=”http://www.totalcriminaldefense.com/crimes-a-z/drug/” title=”Drug Charges”>drug crimes they didn’t commit.
This incident is the latest in a string of accusations against the country’s largest metropolitan police force. And the details surrounding the arrest of Jason Arbeeny offer a sordid glimpse at the machinations of an allegedly corrupt police force.
According to the New York Times, Arbeeny, a 14-year veteran of the New York police force, was recently convicted on criminal charges of official misconduct, offering a false instrument for filing, and falsifying business records.
The charges were based on a 2007 incident in which Arbeeny planted a small bag of crack cocaine on two innocent bystanders.
According to the victims, Yvelisse DeLeon and her boyfriend, Juan Figueroa, the couple had entered the parking lot of their apartment building in Coney Island when Arbeeny and another plainclothes police officer approached them.
DeLeon then testified that she saw Arbeeny place a small bag of crack cocaine in her unlocked car, then proceed to pull it out as if he had found it there.
While Arbeeny’s criminal defense attorney tried to discredit the witnesses, the judge determined that their story was wholly convincing, and leveled the serious convictions against Arbeeny.
This conviction does not represent the first time Arbeeny had been challenged for his allegedly unlawful actions. In 2007, he was charged with stealing crack cocaine from a prisoner van, but he was eventually acquitted of this charge.
And it seems that the Arbeeny incident may only be the tip of the police corruption iceberg. After she announced that Arbeeny was guilty, Justice Gustin L. Reichbach said she was “shocked” by the police department’s seemingly “pervasive scope of misconduct.”
In addition, Justice Reichbach said she was also discouraged by the “seeming casualness by which such conduct is employed” by members of the NYPD.
Reichbachs’ comments come after New York residents continue to read new stories of police corruption. In particular, sources indicate that several narcotics officers in Brooklyn have been caught mishandling evidence obtained in drug arrests.
Even more disturbingly, hundreds of drug arrests have been dismissed after questions were raised about their legitimacy, and city of New York has had to settle several different civil lawsuits that were raised over wrongful incarcerations.
Against this backdrop of allegedly rampant corruption, Justice Reichbach may choose to set an example by giving Arbeeny a harsh sentence. Sentencing is planned for next week, and Arbeeny faces a possible maximum sentence of four years in prison.
In the meantime, residents of New York will continue to vent their frustrations against the perceived corruption that seems to plague their embattled police force.