Police Officers And Hate Crime
During my research, I will be focusing on an incident that had happened between a young black 18-year-old male and the chief of police in Bordentown, NJ that took place back in 2016 and is now going to trial. At this time there is a case going on against the chief of police in Bordentown who will be facing hate crime charges against the young 18-year-old teenager. Some may think that things such as hate crime do not happen especially from those in law enforcement. Crimes can happen anywhere no matter where you are from. Some crimes just aren’t reported. The purpose of this research is to allow people to see that anyone can commit hate crime not matter if you are law enforcement.
A hate crime is a common offense similar to murder, arson, and vandalism. The federal definition of a hate crime includes any offense that ‘attempts to cause bodily injury to any person, because of the actual or perceived race, color, religion, or national origin of any person (Rose, 2018). The concept of hate crime came about in the United States in the late 1970s. But, by the end of the 20th-century laws have been passed by the federal government. In this research, I will talk about hate crime that happened in my town of Bordentown, NJ. I will be talking about an incident that happened back in 2016 between and African American male and the Cheif of police of Bordentown who is looked at as a racist.
Bordentown, NJ is a small town about 10 minutes away from Trenton, NJ. The town was incorporated on December 9th, 1825 as a borough and then reincorporated on April 3rd, 1867 as a city. Bordentown is about 8.5 square miles and has a population of 3,874 people. In the city, there is a population of 80.60% whites, 11.26% Black or African American, 4.11% Asians, 3.59% those who are two or more races, 0.31% other race and 0.13% American Indian and Alaska Naive. In the city, there have not been any major crimes committed. The violent crime rate is just 0 per 1,000 residents. However, the rate of property crimes is for example burglary, larceny, grand theft auto, and arson. Bordentown is a small town where not so many crimes are committed. In the past 10 years, no police officer has been charged with a federal hate crime.
According to CNN, on September 1 of 2016, Bordentown police were called to the Ramada Inn where Timothy Stroye (18 Years Old) and a 16-year-old female were swimming but did not pay for a room. The Ramada inn requires a person to book a room to be able to use the pool so because the young boy did not book a room he was trespassing. By that time Timothy and the 16-year-old female had already violated the hotel policies. According to the CNN report, the ramada inn called the police to have the young male and female removed from the premises. At the time of police arrival, the young man had been drinched from being in the pool and then a conrontation took place between the 18-year-old and police so then back up was called. Stroye was then pepper sparyed and handcuffed. According to the CNN post, the teenage girl’s aunt had been a witness to the encounter who othen screamed at the officers. After being handcuffed he then was escorted out the hotel where he then had his head slammed against a metal door jam. When arriving at the police station, Stroye was treated by EMT. But choose not to go to the hospital because he wanted to avoid delays in processing his case. In this case, Frank Nucera Jr, chief of police and business administration was the officer who attacked the young 18-year-old male. The supposed that the assault against 18year old Timothy Stroye was compelled by bias against African Americans.
According to CNN Lisa Rose, it is difficult to bring criminal deprivation of rights indictments against law enforcement because police have wide latitude to use force if they believe an individual is threatening public safety, whether the person is armed or not. With Nucera, prosecutors felt they had sufficient proof to convince a jury the now-retired chief used excessive and unreasonable force. Also, he was motivated by racial bias (Rose, 2018). When this incident occured it had not been a surprise to some, especially African Americans because this officer has been troubling the black community for some time now. In 2017, Nucera was charged with hate crime and was the first officer in 10years to be charged with the federal offense.
The incident between Nucera and the 18-year-old teenage male, it was known to be a significant history of racist behavior. In the past Nucera had been recorded before making racist remakes about the African American people. He referred to blacks with the N-word and before made it clear that he wouldn’t mind shooting them on a firing squad and using the police dogs on the force to intimidate them too. The decisions of the chief police officer made based on doing his job or is he really a racist.
The real question is: is this really a hate crime that took place? How much force has really be used against the young teen? According to CNN, The prosecutors have put out there that the police have been charged in hate crime. The first crime that had been committed was when the young girl and boy decided to go on the permissive without getting a room so they were trespassing. But was it worth it? Is it worth losing your job? Is it worth facing serious charges such as hate crime? Police officers are supposed to be here to protect.
In terms of my methodology, I will be using examples of the Eric Garder case. The Eric Garder case is a similar case to the Stroye case. Both African Americans males who were attacked by law enforcement. The only difference between the two is that one officer was charged with the crime the other was fired. I will be going around my neighborhood interviewing people and asking them questions about the case against the chief and has it affected the city at all. I will also be doing surveys to come to a conclusion as to what can be done to avoid a situation like this from happening again. Lastly, I will interview the police and get their inputs as to what has changed since the incident.
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