NYPD cops accused of harassing, stealing from Brooklyn family after investigating relative’s mysterious shooting - Caesarscircuit.com


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Tuesday, 24 April 2018

NYPD cops accused of harassing, stealing from Brooklyn family after investigating relative’s mysterious shooting

Roberto Lopez-Lopez, center, with his wife Jasmin Valle, right, daughter Jayleen Lopez ,23, and granddaughter Hailey Hernandez, 3 months, left, on Thursday April 19, 2018 in Brooklyn. (Debbie Egan-Chin/New York Daily News)
A mysterious shooting and an aggressive investigation have police at odds with a Brooklyn family that slapped a $10.5 million notice of claim against the NYPD charging cops with harassment, theft and unlawful imprisonment.
Roberto Lopez-Lopez, 43, said the battle began when his little brother was shot near their Bushwick home.
Investigators have harassed his family over the Feb. 8 shooting, Lopez-Lopez said, taking his licensed gun and permit and refusing to return them — and even arresting him along with his wife and children weeks later on drug and weapons charges after a 6 a.m. raid on their home.
"I don't know what to do anymore," Lopez-Lopez told the Daily News. "My family can't sleep. We are scared."
Lopez-Lopez said he told investigators all he knows about the shooting involving his brother, Louis Lopez, 31, who was wounded in the leg.
"I didn't know what was going on, I wasn't there. I just took him to the hospital," said Lopez-Lopez, who still hasn't received his gun or the license back. "They asked me why I took him to the hospital? He's my brother!"
Louis, who lives near his brother, said he was returning from the store when he heard a loud boom and felt his leg burning.
"I ran to my brother's house," Louis said. "I was scared, I needed help. At the hospital, I told the police everything and they wanted me to lie. It didn't make sense. I told them I got shot on the street, not in my house and I didn't know who shot me. They tried to get me to say that I shot myself. That wasn't true."
An NYPD spokesman, Lt. John Grimpel, said cops have had a difficult time putting the pieces of the shooting together.
The younger brother previously did a two-year stint in prison for firing a gun through a neighbor's window, the family said.
"Mr. Lopez gave police multiple locations regarding where he was shot," Grimpel said. "There was no evidence he was shot at any of those locations."
But Roberto Lopez-Lopez said he and his relatives are doing their utmost to appease the cops.
"They keep asking me to tell them what happened. . . .They even threatened to revoke my gun license if I didn't tell them that my brother shot himself," said Lopez-Lopez, who works at a grocery store chain.
When the officers claimed Lopez-Lopez's gun license was suspended, they confiscated it along with his gun from the family's Jefferson Ave. apartment.
"I had no problem giving it to them. I knew there was a mix-up," said Lopez-Lopez, who allowed the officers in his home to take the gun and license.
Police left Lopez-Lopez's bullets behind, he said.
Days later, Lopez-Lopez went to the 83rd Precinct to retrieve his gun license. But when he got there, cops questioned him again about the shooting, he said.
Roberto Lopez-Lopez with his wife Jasmin Valle, center, daughter Jayleen Lopez , and granddaughter Hailey Hernandez on Thursday, April 18, 2018 in Brooklyn (Debbie Egan-Chin/New York Daily News)
On another date, the detective and captain on the case went to Lopez-Lopez's house to return the gun license — and to ask him even more questions.
Several weeks passed, and Lopez-Lopez — a married father of three children — figured the investigation was over.
But it wasn't.
On March 28, "I heard a loud bang on my door at like 6 in the morning. Cops broke through the door with a ram, they all had guns, they told everyone in my family to get on the ground," said Lopez-Lopez.
Lopez-Lopez, his wife Jasmine Valle, three children and other relatives were all arrested.
"The police took my granddaughter and they didn't have a car seat. When the baby needed milk, they handcuffed my daughter's one hand and only let her use the other hand to feed the baby as they were driving," said a frustrated Lopez-Lopez.
"They didn't care. It was my worst nightmare."
The entire family was held at the 83rd Precinct from 7 a.m. until they were taken to Central Booking around midnight, according to Lopez-Lopez.
"The behavior of the police in this case was shocking," said Robert Brown, the family's attorney. "Targeting and pressuring an innocent and hardworking family of a shooting victim by trumping up charges is not how the NYPD should operate."
Family members were charged with possessing a knife, a 17th century souvenir musket, numerous rounds of ammo and a small amount of marijuana, court records show.
All of their charges were adjourned in contemplation of dismissal, court records show. They must all stay out of trouble for six months.
But that wasn't the end of it, Lopez-Lopez said.
When the family returned home, he said, they found their entire house was ransacked, including a unit they rent out to a tenant. The tenant's $1,200 rent and $800 in savings as well as jewelry were missing, according to a notice of claim filed Monday.
But Grimpel, the NYPD spokesman, said "the money that was taken during that arrest was vouchered."
A spokesman for the city Law Department declined to comment on the notice of claim.

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