It’s hard enough to find a public restroom in New York City, but t have to worry about being a victim of a sting operation while doing what you need to be doing? Well, the stings are up, you can now pee freely.
NYC Police bus terminal will no longer use plainclothes officers positioned in public bathrooms to conduct sting operations.
The Port of Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Departments (PAPD) agreed to change a couple of things around bathroom patrols. They will:
- cease plainclothes patrols of bathrooms for lewdness or exposure
- institute new LGBTQ+ sensitivity training
- improve the civilian complain and officer discipline process
- designate a single-stall gender-neutral restroom at the main terminal
Why the no-more-die-eye sting operations? Was it because they though they were too harsh on the Gay and Bi men looking for action?
Cornell Holden and Miguel Mejia said they were falsely arrested for public lewdness while using the restrooms at the Port Authority’s main bus terminal. The occurrence happened in 2014, the lawsuit was brought forth in 2017, alleged disturbing practices by the PAPD.
Both Holden and Mejia said they had committed no illegal act, but the police claimed the two men were masturbating (were later cleared). How would the police know?
It was alleged that LGBTQ+ men were targeted because they looked gay, or plain-clothed police would initiate activities by looking over the urinal walls trying to see what they could see, acting like an interested party, and sometimes even exposing themselves, and then would arrest men for their positive responses.
Some men, the lawsuit claims, were just arrested because they looked the part and the police assumed would go along with the charges instead of fighting them charges that would be embarrassing, have jail sentences and fines.
With the win of this court case against the PAPD, Holden will receive $15,000 and Mejia will receive $25,000.
Thanks men for stepping up and shutting down what seemed to be illegal entrapment by the PAPD.
“No one should have to go through what I went through, and I hope that the PAPD will change as a result of this lawsuit and settlement,” Holden said in a statement Wednesday.
In a statement, the Port Authority said its police department “has not for years conducted plainclothes operations in the bus terminal’s bathrooms targeting public lewdness, the kind of operations that formed the basis for this now-resolved lawsuit.”