It's in The Bag

labrea_gwNovember 14, 2012

The latest from fun city home of stop & search. Is "Lucky Bag"

Police leave a bag on a park bench with money or electronics in it anyone who comes along and picks it up might get the surprise of their lives!

The Daily News is saying a good Samaritan deserves better that this shoddy treatment from the wormy apple! (gets more wormy every day) What say you!

"Cops arrested a Good Samaritan tourist in Central Park and treated him like a sticky-fingered thief, a million-dollar lawsuit charges.

Yakov Dubin, 49, says he was wrongly collared by police after he found and took $27 that had been left by cops in a dirty purse last year.

Dubin says he was going to turn the cash in but before he could, plainclothes officers pounced and accused him of stealing the money.

"It was a very bad experience," said Dubin, a real estate agent from an Atlanta suburb who filed the $1-million suit Tuesday.

"I'm a law-abiding citizen. I've never been arrested, and for them to put me in handcuffs in the middle of the day in front of my kids was humiliating."

The Aug. 11, 2011, arrest was part of "Operation Lucky Bag," the controversial NYPD sting program in which cops put valuables, such as cash or an iPad, in a bag and then arrest whoever tries to walk away with the ill-gotten booty.

But the operation is nothing short of entrapment, critics say.

Dubin's court filing said his troubles began after he found a purse without identification under a bench. Dubin admits that he pulled out the cash, left the purse because it was old and smelly and started to walk away.

That's when a group of plainclothes cop confronted him, asking him if he had anything that didn't belong to him.

"Plaintiff told the officers that he had taken the money out of the purse in order to turn it over to a park ranger," the lawsuit states. "(He) then gave the money to the officers."

But he was handcuffed anyway, prompting tears from his teenage daughter, the lawsuit said.

"Don't worry," one of the "Lucky Bag" officers allegedly told her. "We'll take your daddy to a good jail."

Dubin spent four hours in custody before he was released after being charging him with petty larceny and possession of stolen property.

A month later, those charges were reduced to a $120 fine and a disorderly conduct violation.

The NYPD did not respond to a request for comment on the lawsuit. But at the time, NYPD spokesman Paul Browne defended the arrest.

"Someone who opens a bag that doesn't belong to him, stuffs $27 in his pocket and walks away is no innocent," he said. "Any law-abiding person who has had their property stolen from a park bench or blanket will be happy to know that the NYPD is out there combating such thefts."

Dubin said the experience has soured him on New York.

"I haven't been back since, except to go to court," he said. "And then it was in and out, not even stop to buy a hot-dog."

The police theory that laying in wait for someone to do such a thing "stinks to high heavens off manufactured arrest records"

Here is a link that might be useful: Just lucky I guess

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rob333

I hope he gets every penny. It takes more than just picking it up and walking off with it. They're dirty cops, very dirty. And then some. $1M isn't enough for their treatment of him.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 12:52PM
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sweeby

What a ridiculously stupid 'sting' -- A dirty, smelly old purse with no ID? Left below a park bench? And no clearly visible opportunity to do the right thing - like a ranger kiosk, or uniformed officer nearby?

I understand the goal -- But why not include a phone number in the purse so a good citizen *could* make an effort to return it?

Or put the 'dirty bag' next to a plainclothes cop pretending to be a sleepless elderly or homeless person?

You want to catch *bad guys*, why not set up a situation where only 'bad' guys would take advantage and where 'moderately good' guys wouldn't?

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 1:02PM
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stephf(5a)

So much for "finder's keepers"...

Seriously, it was $27. Who cares if he WAS going to keep it. You couldn't even buy a fancy coffee for that in NYC.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 1:37PM
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patriciae_gw(07)

And seriously they dont have enough real criminals to catch or is that too hard? Are their courts empty so they need to beef up their numbers? What?

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 1:55PM
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rob333

At least it wasn't $500+ or whatever it would take in NY to make it a felony? Nah, still not good enough.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 2:31PM
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