Gay men are being targeted in “lewdness” stings at Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan according to a new class action lawsuit, NBC New York reports:
The suit, filed Monday in Manhattan federal court, claims Port Authority police officers engage in discrimination by falsely arresting men perceived as gay at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on baseless charges including public lewdness and exposure.
The complaint accuses officers of making targeted arrests on the discriminatory basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation and to boost quality of life arrest statistics.
“The PAPD have continued to make such targeted arrests knowing or believing that most of those arrested will ultimately be forced to plead to lesser charges to avoid public embarrassment and humiliation, costly legal fees, and jail sentences, as well as reputational and professional harm associated with the false charges,” the suit explained.
Plainclothes officers pretend to use the Port Authority Bus Terminal urinals while staring at suspects over the small privacy dividers, said the suit filed in Manhattan Federal Court.
The cops then “falsely (claim) that they were engaged in illegal conduct,” the suit said…
…“In some cases, the officer will actually step back from the urinal in order to see around the privacy wall, in an effort to view the target’s hands and genitals,” said the suit, filed by the Legal Aid Society and Winston & Strawn.
The suspects are arrested by a team of PAPD officers upon exiting the men’s room, the lawsuit said.
One plaintiff said PAPD cops called his arresting officer “the gay whisperer,” congratulating him on yet another arrest.
This isn’t the first time this has happened.
The Young Turks, from 2014: