NYC Councilman Yusef Salaam Stopped by NYPD: Body-Cam Footage Released

The New York Police Department (NYPD) has released body-cam footage showing the moment when New York City Councilman Yusef Salaam, famously exonerated in the Central Park Five case, was pulled over in Harlem.

The incident occurred on a Friday night and concluded after Salaam identified himself as a council member.

He stated that the officer did not provide a reason for the stop, contributing to his decision to skip a police ride-along with Mayor Eric Adams the following day.

Body cam shows officer pulling over NYC councilman Yusef Salaam, exonerated member of Central Park 5:

The Reason Behind the Stop: A Matter of Dispute

According to the NYPD, Salaam was stopped due to the dark tint on his car windows, a violation of state law.

However, Salaam asserts that he received no such explanation at the time of the stop. He emphasized the incident’s significance, underscoring the importance of transparency in all police investigative stops.

Salaam believes that without clear communication, such stops can lead to racial profiling and unconstitutional practices.

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NYPD’s Response and the Context of the Stop

The NYPD commended the officers for their professional conduct during the stop. This incident comes amid discussions around Mayor Adams’ veto of the How Many Stops Act.

This proposed legislation would require police officers to document all interactions with the public, even for minor encounters. Mayor Adams and police officials argue that this could increase paperwork and affect public safety.

Councilman Salaam, who was wrongfully imprisoned as a teenager in the Central Park Five case, was elected to the City Council last November.

His election was a significant milestone, coming decades after DNA evidence exonerated him and four other Black and Latino men falsely accused in the Central Park jogger case.

Salaam, who spent nearly seven years in prison, has since become a notable activist, author, and now a political figure, advocating for justice and transparency.

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