A NYPD officer who reportedly made a false arrest against a Black man and then lied in official documents about the incident, has yet to be disciplined by Manhattan District Attorney.
According to the New York Daily News, in June of 2016, Officer Xavier Gonzalez, arrested then 58-year-old Darrell Williams on pickpocketing charges, then made false claims in a complaint about what a witness said.
According to the official records, after handcuffing the suspect at a Manhattan subway station, Gonzalez accused Williams — who was working in finance as an investment adviser — of picking the pockets of an undercover cop while on the train.
Williams maintains he was dressed in a suit with a briefcase in one hand and his phone in the other, while headed to meet a client. The officer, who has been on the force since 2010, claimed Anthony Osei, who was on the train, identified Williams as the man who stole his phone.
But upon being questioned, Osei told the Daily News he never made those claims and also made sure to tell the police and prosecutors it wasn’t true. After Williams sued the city and NYPD over the false arrest, Osei also made the same clarifications in an affidavit.
“I defended him (Williams) because it was the right thing to do,” Osei said. “A cop came up to me and said, ‘Did he take your phone?’ I said, ‘No, I have my phones and wallet.’ Two weeks later, I get a call from the prosecutor. I told them the same thing.”
“The evidence is overwhelming that Gonzalez simply fabricated the allegations against my client, Darryl Williams, near the end of Gonzalez’s tour of duty so that Gonzalez could earn overtime,” said Williams’ lawyer Joel Berger.
Berger is referencing the fact that the officer averages more than $30,000 in overtime every year above his $94,000 a year salary, due to a process called “arrest overtime,” that kicks in whenever an arrest is made near the end of an officer’s shift.
As a result of this false arrest Williams had his financial license was suspended for two months and his job, where he had worked for more than two decades, was put in jeopardy. He also paid his lawyer $1,500 to get his charges dismissed. But unfortunately the dismissal came after his arrest appeared on a financial industry database called BrokerCheck, further jeopardizing his professional reputation and ability to seek employment.
Williams reportedly settled with the city settled for $100,000, while Gonzalez, who was promoted to detective in Dec. 2017 and is re-assigned to the Brooklyn Special Victims division, has not faced any disciplinary action or charges for the ordeal he put him through.
“I have no trust in cops anymore,” said Williams, who is now 60 and retired. “He’s putting perfectly innocent people in handcuffs. People who don’t have the resources I have, they could go to jail for something they didn’t do.”