|Men's Room at Grand Central (built 1934)|
A man who was busted by an MTA police officer while using a urinal in Grand Central Terminal in April 2017 has sued, claiming false arrest. (Susan Watts / New York Daily News)
A Harlem man claims an MTA cop “leaned over and looked at” his genitals at a urinal – before arresting him on bogus allegations of indecent exposure, new court papers allege.
William Campbell was using the restroom at Grand Central Terminal about 10:40 p.m. on April 17, 2017, when a “man using the urinal next to petitioner leaned over and looked at petitioner's penis,” he claimed in Manhattan Supreme Court papers filed late Friday. Campbell “pushed the man away,” but the stranger jumped on him and said “What are you doing, you f------g f----t?” his state civil lawsuit alleges.
Campbell said “nothing,” and the man then called him a “dirty h—o,” court papers claim.
The man, who turned out to be a Metropolitan Transportation Authority cop, cuffed Campbell so tightly his “wrists bled.”
The cop then shouted to another officer “another pee-pee case” while leading Campbell out of the restroom, court papers charge.
Campbell was taken to Midtown South Precinct stationhouse and charged with endangering the welfare of a child, criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree, exposure of a person and public lewdness.
The criminal complaint “falsely stated that there were children in the restroom at the time petitioner was using the urinal, there were no children in the area; that petitioner unlawfully exposed his penis, he did not, he was using the urinal; and that petitioner was carrying in his backpack a knife with a 10-inch blade, he was not in possession of a knife,” Campbell’s suit says.
Because Campbell couldn’t immediately make the $1,000 bail ordered at his arraignment, he spent 72 hours in lockup. After repeated court appearances, and a trial, Campbell was cleared, he said.
The Manhattan district attorney’s office said this case is sealed, so official information on the outcome is not available.
Campbell, who claims he suffered an “unlawful arrest,” is seeking unspecified damages.
Asked for comment, MTA spokesman Aaron Donovan said, “We cannot comment on the specifics of this case or any pending litigation. MTA police officers are vital to maintaining a safe environment for Metro-North customers and all who visit Grand Central.”