Dear Sir or Madam:
Have you always believed the NYPD was here to serve and protect the citizens of NY? Well, take a look at my story…
On August 12, 2009 I was celebrating a surprise but planned out birthday party with friends and business colleagues at a Night Club called Suzie Wongs, located on W27st between 10th & 11th avenues, in NYC.
Not only was it the celebration of my 30th birthday, but also the fact that we had finally accomplished and obtained a business contract deal with Hershey’s Chocolate, to develop a fashion apparel brand with the Fortune 500 Company.
Just before we wrapped up our festivities at Suzie Wongs, we decided to cut a cake at a 2nd location called Perfections – a Gentlemen’s Club located in Queens.
I escorted two of my female friends to catch a cab and shortly thereafter I saw that my friend Turan Sutherland was in the process of being arrested, which was confusing to me because I had just seen him before exiting the club.
Just before 4:00AM, I was brutally, and racially attacked by multiple NYPD officers, all because I respectfully repeated a question, having been concerned about the safety of my friend.
Howard Collins: “Excuse me officer, it’s my birthday and that’s my cousin. Can you let me know why he is being arrested?”
Officer Eric Florio: “Back The Fuck Up!”
I backed up a couple of steps as the Officer stated, and then repeated my question…
Howard Collins: “Excuse me officer, it’s my birthday that’s my cousin can you let me know why he is being arrested?”
Officer Eric Florio: “Back The Fuck Up!”
I backed up a couple more steps away from the Officer as requested, and asked the following;
Howard Collins: Can you at least let me know what precinct you’re going to take him to?
Immediately thereafter, Officer Florio walked towards me, pulled out his metal and extended his baton striking me in my legs while I was still backing up, until I backed into a construction pillar. Officer Florio continued to beat me with his baton, striking my left knee while I held on to the construction pillar for support. At that moment, a second officer, McGee (his partner), then started beating me in my right Knee.
All this time I was NEVER read my rights and I was NEVER told that I was being placed under arrest. My friend Dujaun Bond stood five feet away and watched the entire beating take place. At this time I knew I was going to be placed under arrest, so then I looked at the second officer to try to remember his badge number. When he saw me trying to do so, he pulled out a spray bottle, said, “WHAT YOU LOOKING AT NIGGER?” and maced me directly in my right eye.
I turned away with one eye open so I could be aware of the beating, then Officer Florio maced me directly in my Left eye and continued beating me. At this point I clutched onto the pillars tighter because, I was terrified for my life.
As my eyes would open and close, in and out from receiving beating after beating all over my body, I thought not to let my body fall to the ground. Then I started thinking about Rodney King, and in the blink of an eye, Abner Louima, and in a final blink of an eye, I flashed to a black tunnel of a list of different police brutality victims – all while being beaten by metal batons on my knees, my legs, my arms and the right side of my face.
Seconds later, a 6’5” and 280 – 300 pound detective came rushing out of an unmarked car and punched me directly in the right side of my face, dazing me. Then, he placed me in a full nelson, putting his arms under mine – to the back of my neck. He pulled me off and picked me up, slamming me to the ground, face down, and handcuffed my hands behind my back.
After I was in handcuffs, officers began kicking my legs, my groin, my stomach, my chest, my back – and then I passed out from being kicked in the face.
I woke up still handcuffed, behind bars with Turan Sutherland. My mouth was foaming and I was gasping for air from the mace in my mouth. I was choking on a chipped tooth with the taste of my blood in my mouth, and behind my contacts there was a serious problem. I started falling in and out of a panic; I was not able to see or breath, and I couldn’t use my hands.
Before I could no longer respond, Turan was trying to make me stay focused, trying to get me to breathe, and trying to get someone call the ambulance – but the 10th precinct Officers told Turan to back the fuck up off me and let that nigger die there.
After officers saw that I was not responding, they called an ambulance to take me to the emergency room, where I awoke with my arms and ankles cuffed to the bed. I awoke to a nurse telling me about the injuries I had sustained and that I had an open wound in my left knee. The mace was never washed out of my eyes. The nurse was not sure if there were any particles in the cut, so she would not give the injury any stitches. She put the discharge papers in my hand and left. When the nurse left, Officer McGee came close to my face and said, “LOOK AT ME NIGGER, YOU DON’T LOOK TOO TOUGH NOW. SAY SOMETHING! SAY SOMETHING!”
I began to yell and cry for help to the nurses and the doctors around. I explained that the officer was threatening me, and that I was scared of what they were going to do to me, to which the nurse replied, “Sorry sir, but it’s out of our control and there’s nothing we can do about it.” I closed my eyes and started to pray, a,d I don’t know if I fell asleep or passed out in a panic, but I don’t remember much before returning back behind bars in the 10th precinct.
Back behind bars with Turan, I finally learned what he got arrested for and what happened to me after asking the officer the questions. He told me he was scared and thought I was going to die, and that he was sorry that this started because of him. He was urinating in public, having forgotten that there was a warrant out for his arrest.
After explaining and filling in the blanks on how police unjustifiably beat me up after handcuffing me without reading me my rights, Officer Florio showed up to the cell bars. Before releasing Turan, Officer Florio decided to threaten me by saying “If you think about suing me, you’ll lose because you’re some street smuck, and I would win because I’m an officer.” He went on to taunt me about how a similar incident took place before in his career; he gloated about how he won, and how he would do so again.
After what Turan explained to me about what took place, I found it funny but painful. I passed him my Hershey’s Business card and told him if I was a street smuck, I don’t think Hershey’s Chocolate, a Fortune 500 Company, would want to do business with me. I told him he could keep his measly paying job, and I never said another word to Officer Florio ever again.
I was processed through booking two hours after Turan Sutherland was released. Again, I was never told what I was arrested for, nor had I ever been read my rights throughout the whole process – until finally a legal aid attorney told me what I was being charged with.
1- OBSTRUCTION OF GOVERNMENT ADMINISTRATION IN THE SECOND DEGREE
2- RESISTING ARREST
3- UNLAWFULL POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA
I was released without bail but had to report back to court. After receiving my belongings from the 10th precinct, I went to my friend’s home, then to the hospital afterwards because I had very real complaints of internal body pains, and was experiencing blood in my urine and stool. That very morning I had even coughed up blood.
On several court dates, neither of the officers involved in my birthday beating showed up to court. The case was ultimately sealed and dismissed on March 23, 2010.
Later, I followed up on a lawsuit with a lawyer named Joel Schmelkin of Breadbar, Garfield & Schmelkin. The lawsuit which was filed in this attorneys office stated the following:
On Wednesday, August 12th 2009, at approximately 3:40AM on West 27th Street between 10th & 11th avenue’s, in the county of New York, City and State of New York I was FALSELY ARRESTED, FALSELY IMPRISONED, BATTERED, RACIALLY INSULTED WITH VILE LANGUAGE; I HAD MACE SPRAYED UPON ME, AS WELL AS MY CIVIL RIGHTS VIOLATED BY THE CITY OF NEW YORK, AND THEIR AGENTS, SERVANTS, AND EMPLOYEES, AND OTHER VARIOUS POLICE OFFICERS OF THE 10TH PRECINCT, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO P.O. ERIC FLORIO, (SHIELD #00653). I was suing for $5,000,000 (Five-million) Dollars.
On 10-22-2009 I learned I had the following injuries in my MRI of the Lumbosacral Spine: POSTEROCENTRAL DISC HERNIATION AT THE L5-S1 & L4-L5 LEVEL (My spine was shifted toward the left side). MY CERVICAL SPINE IS IN REVERSE OF THE NORMAL CURVATURE OF THE CERVICAL SPINE, AND I HAVE A TORN MANISCUS IN MY KNEE.
Ever since August 12, 2009, the day of my 30th Birthday, my world has been upside down. As if the incident wasn’t bad enough, later on that year Aleah Holland RN left me with our 1 year old son.
All this was happening while I had to care for my very ill mother Graciela Alexander who is suffering from Diabetes Mellitus, and Breast Cancer which has now Metastasized to the brain.
On January 10, 2013, two days after my son’s 5th birthday, I was awarded full custody of Howard Collins IV from his mother Aleah Holland RN who had abandoned him in late 2009, just before his 2nd Birthday.
Since August 2009, I’ve been undergoing physical therapy and battling constant pains. We finally started trial on February 25th of this year – so I’ve been dealing with this ordeal going on 4 years now.
February 25, 2013 – TRIAL DATE / How does this explain and justify what NYPD did? Please read my truthful recollection of what occurred in court:
On February 25th 2013, Officer Eric Florio testified that I was intoxicated in public, that I hit him and that he was scared of me. Really?! Officer Florio never charged me with PUBLIC INTOXICATION or ASSAULT AND BATTERY. I need someone to please tell me how this makes any sense.
Officer Florio charged me for RESISTING ARREST while he and his partner Officer McGee were beating and macing me in the face as I held on to a construction pillar for support. Simultaneously, an unmarked police car pulled up, a detective hopped out and punched me in my face, assisting both officers. No one ever took the information of this mystery officer, after they kicked me repeatedly. They were using excessive force – mind you, I was already handcuffed!
When I was rushed to Saint Vincent’s Hospital in Manhattan for passing out in the 10th precinct, I was treated and awakened by Nurse Suzanne Echemendia. She told me that I had puncture wounds on my knee and lower leg, contusions to my lower extremity in multiple sites, and she also said that they would not give me any stitches because she didn’t know if there were any particles in the wound. They didn’t clean my eyes out from the mace either, but I remember how the officers cleansed their eyes after macing one another by accident (while purposely macing me at the same time).
Handcuffed to the bed by my ankles and wrists, I was racially insulted again by Officer McGee when he said, “LOOK AT ME NOW NIGGER, YOU DON’T LOOK TOO TOUGH. SAY SOMETHING! SAY SOMETHING!”
As trained professional officers of the state of New York, Officer Florio and Officer McGee both testified to the importance of affidavits and how they must be accurate – but both officers failed to adhere to their own policy when they processed me through the system under their false allegations that I assaulted Officer Florio.
Officer Florio testified on February 25, 2013 that it is very important that officers’ paperwork is very accurate. Yet, at the hands of Officer Florio, I was liable of getting lost in the system as he lied and testified that he did not write the police statement, stating that he only signed it. (So, it’s okay not to read your arrest affidavits to see if they’re accurate or not?)
While Officer McGee was on trial, he plead the 5th on his actions at the scene, and at Saint Vincent’s Hospital on my birthday.
While in court, evidence was presented against me in the form of photographs that were taken from my Facebook account. One photo was of my son and I saluting on a horse with my ill Mother getting back to life. It was made to seem as though I must have been feeling 100% fine physically because of this. That was certainly not the case. What this picture does show is that I am a proud and loving father. My son is infatuated with horses; he tries to use me as his human horse. So, one day I took him and my mother to see the horses; my son wanted a picture on the horse with his dad, and that’s exactly what I gave him.
In addition to this, a second photo of me getting a massage was presented. The caption read: “Feeling like $$$$$$ (money).” What is the crime in that?
How does that picture justify nearly being killed on my birthday by NYPD?
All I did was share my temporary feelings of satisfaction with my friends and family, via a social network. Temporary satisfaction, because although the massage provided much needed relief for my back pains, the feeling would wear off.
The court knows that my doctors records show and prove that I am still suffering with hernias in my upper and lower back due to the beating I received from NYPD, back in August 2009.
To discredit my character, the State and NYPD got Aleah Holland RN – the mother who abandoned our 5 year old son (when he was 2 years old) and is also suing Judge Esther Morgenstern, The Children’s Law Center, and The Administration for Children Services for $999 Trillion Dollars – to try and make false allegations about me… but this is the same woman who lost on January 10th, 2013, when they awarded me full custody. She is vindictive, bitter, and will say anything to tarnish my reputation.
On February 8th, 2013, I had to take my mother to her cancer appointment and her doctor told me that she had less then a year to live. I then received a call from my lawyer, Joel Schmelkin, who told me I had to rush into court – but I was unable to because I was caring for my mother. The court was not moved by my situation and had not one care whatsoever; they forced a $25,000 judgment against me based on allegations from Aleah Holland RN (who has not been a registered nurse since 2008). She testified to discriminate against my character, and the State and NYPD provided photos from Facebook’s Social Network of an automobile accident that took place in 2006 – 3 to 4 years prior to the date in question – August 12, 2009.
The judge did not care to look at my facts and proof, and showed no emotion on the actions of NYPD. There is nothing that justified what police did to me on August 12th, 2009, and Bios testify to the fact that Officer’s Florio and McGee were not accurate with their police work, lied about the charges and my conditions, and that in public, I was severely beaten and racially attacked.
I need justice because I still have to go to therapy and undergo surgery for my knee.
Please Help Me Get Justice.
NYPD Racial Brutality is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights