Judge Criticizes NYPD For Open Container Laws
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As the temperature rises, many New Yorkers will enjoy drinking an intoxicating beverage outside of their home, even though it's illegal.
Now, a Brooklyn judge is taking a stand against what he calls excessive and unfair enforcement of open-container laws.
Former City Councilman and current Criminal Court Judge Noach Dear issued a statement Friday explaining why he dismissed a May case in which a man was arrested for drinking a cup of beer on a Sunset Park sidewalk.
Dear said police must do more to prove defendants are actually drinking alcohol than just observe them doing it.
He also said that open container cases before him have a strong discriminatory tone to them.
"Over the several years that I have been sitting in Brooklyn Criminal Court arraigning people for open container violations, every single defendant was either black or Latino," he said. "As hard as I try, I cannot recall ever arraigning a white defendant for such a violation. "
Dear urged the department to re-examine their practices.
NY1 has reached out to the NYPD and is awaiting comment.