Stop-and-Frisk's Fiercest Foe
As New York’s minority communities fume over the crime-fighting tactic known as stop-and-frisk, one camera-wielding ex-con makes it his mission to catch the cops in action.
He was racing like a madman somewhere on the edge of the Bronx, listening to a police radio and hoping to catch some cops on camera, when suddenly he got lucky. Two officers were approaching a young black man on Bruckner Boulevard, a location Jose LaSalle had marked on his map, which he uses to track citizen complaints of the NYPD routinely and unreasonably stopping and frisking people on the street. LaSalle and his crew, a troop of middle-aged Bronx residents and young female activists, got there within seconds, pulled out their phones and surrounded the officers with cameras. Baffled, the police backed away from the young man.
LaSalle’s gold tooth was gleaming in the lights of passing cars; he couldn’t hide his excitement. “Those were rookies,” he laughed as the officers walked away.
The badge on his vest reads “Cop Watcher,” and he never leaves home without his camera. At night, he works for New York City’s parks department, but by day LaSalle patrols so…
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