A former FedEx driver who unwittingly gave directions to Ismaaiyl Brinsley, the man who murdered two police officers last year, says he’s been the subject of brutal harassment by the NYPD, The New York Daily Newsreports.
Karim Baker says he has been stopped a total of 20 times by the NYPD since the shooting happened. On Dec. 20, 2014, Brinsley stopped Baker and asked him for directions to the Marcy Houses in Brooklyn. Baker, who says he had never met Brinsley before that day, pointed him in the direction of the large housing projects, where Brinsley then shot and killed Detectives Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu.
He insisted he had no idea about Brinsley’s plans to fatally shoot the two NYPD officers.
What followed for Baker were months of harassment and a bloody beating by the police. The latest was Oct. 21, when he was reportedly beaten by officers in a traffic incident. Baker suffered cuts and bruises on his face during the encounter.
Baker was charged with resisting arrest, criminal possession of a controlled substance, obstructing cops, and parking within 15 feet of a hydrant. Court records say Baker refused to show ID, reeked of reefer, and “resisted arrest by flailing his arms and wrestling” with the officers. Baker denied he had any drugs on him and said he was legally parked when he was pummeled by cops who pulled up in an unmarked car.
Eric Subin, Baker’s attorney, called the incident far from a coincidence.
“Twenty times in a year is a lot of times to be pulled over and never issued a summons,” he said. “This is our strongly held theory. It’s too much of a bizarre coincidence not to hold water. They pull him over, they’ll come up to his car, look at him, take his ID, go back to their car, give him his ID back, say ‘Get the hell out of here,’” Subin said. “Every single time.”
Baker has filed a notice of claim in Queens Supreme Court in advance of a state lawsuit.