In New York, a human rights lawyer has filed a lawsuit against the NYPD after she was arrested for blocking the sidewalk while waiting for her husband and kids to use the bathroom at a Times Square restaurant.
Human Rights Lawyer Arrested For Standing On NYC Sidewalk Waiting For Kids To Use Bathroom
Chaumtoli Huq, a human rights lawyer and former general counsel for Public Advocate Letitia James, had just left a pro-Palestinian rally in Times Square with her husband and two young children when they stopped to use the bathroom at Ruby Tuesday. While she was waiting in front of the restaurant, officers approached her and demanded she clear the sidewalk. That's when some unreasonable shit went down.
"I'm not in anybody's way. Why do I have to move? What's the problem?" she told police, according to the criminal complaint.
Huq said there was plenty of room for pedestrians to walk between her and the protesters, who were penned in along Seventh Avenue.
She said the officers pinned her against the wall, prompting her to say, “I can’t move, I can’t move.”
But Lathrop claimed in a criminal complaint that Huq refused to move when directed to do so. She was arrested.
“At that point I didn’t know what was happening. I was just thinking, ‘What’s going on?’ and all of a sudden the officer flips me [around]…he [turns] my body and presses me against the wall of the restaurant,” Huq said. “He shoved my left arm all the way and kept pushing it and handcuffed me. At that point I just like instinctively yelled, ‘Help!’ because I was alone. I screamed, ‘Help!’"
Huq was charged with obstructing governmental administration, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.
Huq, who has a nose ring and was wearing a traditional Indian tunic and pants on the day of her arrest, said she believes officers targeted her because she is Muslim and South Asian.
On top of the bullshit sidewalk thing, the officers were generally just shitty. Huq says they searched through her purse without probable cause, and took her to the precinct before her husband and children had even returned from the restaurant. Officers offered to deliver her purse and personal items out to her husband, but then became suspicious because he had a last name different than hers.
Because according to the officer, "In America wives take the names of their husbands."
Huq's lawsuit, filed this week in Manhattan Federal Court, claims the NYPD acted with "unreasonable and wholly unprovoked force" and that their behavior was "characteristic of a pattern and practice of the NYPD in aggressive overpolicing of people of color and persons lawfully exercising their First Amendment rights."
Yes. These police officers messed with the wrong lawyer.
More here: Mom Arrested for Blocking Sidewalk While Waiting for Family to Use Bathroom