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Old 09-10-2015, 06:43 AM
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Default White Cop who tackled black 'tennis star' by mistake strikes deal to avoid trial

http://nypost.com/2015/09/10/james-b...werent-racist/

James Blake: The cops weren’t racist
By Melkorka Licea and David K. Li
September 10, 2015 | 9:21am

Former tennis star James Blake acknowledged Thursday that he wasn’t the victim of racial profiling when cops tackled and handcuffed him in a case of mistaken identity.

The one-time No. 4 player in the world was taken down by cops Wednesday at the Grand Hyatt on East 42nd Street in Manhattan after he was wrongly identified as a cellphone thief.

“This was a case of excessive force, you’re not making it about racial profiling,” interviewer Robin Roberts said to him on “Good Morning America.”

“No,” Blake said.

“You just feel it was use of excessive force?” Roberts continued.

“Yeah,” Blake responded.


James Blake outside the Grand Hyatt in Midtown Wednesday.
Photo: Stephen Yang


“I probably even wouldn’t be so indignant about it, if it wasn’t so obvious. It was so blatant,” continued Blake, who is African-American. “I was standing there doing nothing, not running, not resisting, in fact, smiling.”

Blake said he was in the hotel lobby when he spotted a man in a T-shirt and shorts rushing toward him.

“I thought it may be it was just someone I didn’t recognize,” said the Harvard alum. “A high school friend or someone coming to mess with me and give me a bear hug.”

“He picked me up and body slammed me,” Blake added. “He put me on the ground, told me to turn over and shut my mouth and put the cuffs on.”

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton also said Thursday that race was not a factor in the case.

“Sorry, race has nothing at all to do with this. If you look at the photograph of the suspect it looks like the twin brother of Mr. Blake,” Bratton said on CNN.

“So let’s put that nonsense to rest right now, race has nothing to do with this. We have a witness who identified Mr. Blake as an individual who he had sold a phone to and had been given a false credit card.”

Cops eventually figured out Blake was completely innocent.

Bratton defended his cops: “The officers acted on that information, the witness was there and pointed him out and turns out he was not the individual. They look so much alike.”
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Old 09-10-2015, 06:51 AM
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Default Re: James Blake: The cops weren’t racist

http://nypost.com/2015/09/10/bratton...d-james-blake/

Bratton defends cops who mistakenly cuffed James Blake
By Melkorka Licea and David K. Li
September 10, 2015 | 8:08am

NYPD commissioner Bill Bratton insisted Thursday that race was not a factor when cops threw former tennis star James Blake to the ground and cuffed him in a case of mistaken identity.

The one-time No. 4 player in the world was taken down by cops Wednesday at the Grand Hyatt on East 42nd Street in Manhattan after he was wrongly identified as a cellphone thief.

“Sorry, race has nothing at all to do with this. If you look at the photograph of the suspect it looks like the twin brother of Mr. Blake,” Bratton said on CNN.

“So let’s put that nonsense to rest right now, race has nothing to do with this. We have a witness who identified Mr. Blake as an individual who he had sold a phone to and had been given a false credit card.”

Cops eventually figured out Blake was completely innocent.

Bratton defended his cops: “The officers acted on that information, the witness was there and pointed him out and turns out he was not the individual. They look so much alike.”
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Old 01-06-2016, 09:41 AM
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Default Re: James Blake: The cops weren’t racist

http://nypost.com/2016/01/06/fraudst...le-come-clean/

Fraudsters responsible for James Blake tackle come clean
By Rebecca Rosenberg
January 6, 2016 | 1:18am


Supreme court arraignment of thieves Jarmaine Grey (left) and James Short (right) for using stolen credit cards that led to the wrongful arrest of James Blake. Photo: Steven Hirsch


Three men charged in a credit card-fraud ring that led to the tackle takedown and false arrest of ex-tennis pro James Blake copped to grand larceny Tuesday in exchange for 6 months in jail.

British citizens Jarmaine Grey, James Short and Tolulope Akinnugba admitted that they’d used stolen credit cards to buy more than $18,000 in Louis Vuitton bags, iPhones, designer shoes and champagne through the website GoButler.com.

The company had delivered some of the stolen goods to the Grand Hyatt Hotel where the defendants and Blake were both staying.

But GoButler.com got suspicious and reported the suspected fraud to cops.

In a nationally publicized blunder, an officer violently tackled Blake as he waited in front of the hotel for a car to take him to the U.S. Open Sept. 9.

The cop had mistaken him for an Australian businessman from a phony Instagram account the theft ring used as a front in their scam.

The businessman, who was not connected with the defendants or their crime, bore an uncanny resemblance to the tennis great.

Justice Laura Ward offered the plea deal to Grey, Short, and Akinnugba over the objection of prosecutors who wanted no less than 1 to 3 years.

“The judge was very fair,” said Akinnugba’s lawyer Daniel Ollen.
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Old 01-25-2016, 03:18 PM
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Default Re: James Blake: The cops weren’t racist

http://nypost.com/2016/01/25/fraudst...onths-in-jail/

Fraudsters targeted in James Blake false arrest get 6 months in jail
By Rebecca Rosenberg
January 25, 2016 | 4:34pm


Jarmaine Grey (left), James Short (right) and a third defendant, Tolulope Akinnugba, pleaded guilty to stealing credit cards. Photo: Steven Hirsch


Three men charged in the credit-card-fraud ring that led to the takedown and false arrest of ex-tennis pro James Blake were sentenced Monday to six months in jail.

British citizens Jarmaine Grey, James Short and Tolulope Akinnugba admitted as part of a plea deal that they’d used stolen credit cards to buy more than $18,000 in Louis Vuitton bags, iPhones, designer shoes and champagne through the website GoButler.com.

The company had delivered some of the stolen goods to the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Midtown, where the defendants and Blake were both staying.

GoButler.com got suspicious and reported the suspected fraud to cops.

In a sting-gone-awry, NYPD Officer James Frascatore tackled Blake to the ground as the tennis legend waited in front of the hotel for a car to take him to the US Open on Sept. 9.

The cop had mistaken Blake for an Australian businessman from a phony Instagram account that the theft ring had used as a front in their scam.

The Aussie businessman, who was not connected with the defendants or their crime, bore an uncanny resemblance to the tennis great.



Sean Satha (left) and James Blake. Cops mistook Satha for Blake during the false arrest in September 2015.
Photo: Instagram/R. Umar Abbasi


In the aftermath of the embarrassing blunder, Blake had a private sit-down with Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner Bill Bratton to push for better officer training.

Justice Laura Ward offered the plea deal to Grey, Short, and Akinnugba over the objection of prosecutors, who wanted no less than one to three years.

“But for the fact there was an overly aggressive police officer who tackled Mr. Blake, we likely would not have had the magnitude of attention on this matter,” said Grey’s lawyer, Jeremy Saland.

“I expect that they all will return to England and continue to live a law-abiding and productive life.”
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  #5  
Old 05-15-2017, 06:00 PM
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Default Re: James Blake: The cops weren’t racist

http://nypost.com/2017/05/15/cop-who...o-avoid-trial/

Cop who tackled James Blake strikes deal to avoid trial
By Tina Moore
May 15, 2017 | 1:32pm

The cop who violently tackled retired tennis star James Blake outside a Midtown hotel in a case of mistaken identity won’t have to go through a public disciplinary trial, sources told The Post on Monday.

NYPD Officer James Frascatore, 40, and the city’s Civilian Complaint Review Board reached a deal in the 11th hour that allows the cop to dodge trial, sources said.

Frascatore had been originally set to go to trial starting Monday on excessive-force charges and could have been found guilty of misconduct.

The CCRB, which substantiated the complaint against him, was to prosecute the case in a trial room at One Police Plaza.

But “it is accurate that they reached a deal,” a source said.

Still, various sources said exact terms of the deal — including what if any discipline the cop would face — haven’t yet been finalized. A meeting would likely be held next week to hammer out the details, they said.

Either way, details of the deal could remain secret because of a state statute that shields police officers’ disciplinary records from the public.

Frascatore was stripped of his gun and shield after the incident and reassigned to an administrative post in the department’s detectives bureau.

Blake’s lawyer, Kevin H. Marino, declined to comment Monday.

The Police Department and the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association didn’t immediately return requests for comment.

Frascatore’s lawyer, Stephen Worth, also declined comment.

Frascatore got in trouble after a video showed him throwing Blake on the sidewalk outside the Grand Hyatt Hotel on Sept. 9, 2015.

Frascatore had mistaken Blake for a suspected credit-card fraudster whom his plainclothes NYPD team was seeking.

Blake used the incident as a platform to talk about police racial bias. Blake is bi-racial, and Frascatore is white.

Both then-Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and de Blasio apologized to Blake after the incident.
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