The Post is reporting today that Franklin Mata, the partner of alleged rapist and NYPD officer Kenneth Moreno, is telling investigators that, contrary to what he tried to claim yesterday, the officer did rape the victim rather than have consensual sex with her. Mata and Moreno were called to East 13th Street on December 7, 2008 in response to a cabbie's calls to 911 to say that a fare he picked up was sick in his cab and needed assistance to get home. Mata and Moreno escorted the woman to her apartment, then returned twice during the course of the early morning, with Morneo allegedly raping her on the third visit. The Post reports that the woman awoke hours after the alleged attack "in pain and with signs of trauma," prompting a trip to Beth Israel Hospital. When the officers' lockers were searched after the allegations were brought by the unnamed victim, heroin was found inside Moreno's locker. While the officer tried to claim that he simply forgot to voucher the smack, it was found "tightly wrapped in a package hidden in a cigarette box."
The Daily News states that along with the dope in his locker, Moreno was found to be in possession of a list of almost a dozen women containing their names and addresses. The DA is currently looking into whether any of the women were involved with any incidents that Moreno may have responded to in his duty as a police officer. Moreno was stationed out of the famous 9th Precinct (Kojak and NYPD Blue used the facade of the station house for their filming). Back in the summer of 2005, PBA Magazine did a piece on the 9th Precinct, tailing Moreno and his then-partner Tyra Narvaez on one of their midnight to eight runs.
There is still no word on whether Moreno or Mata have been permanently relieved of duty or have even been arrested. You can bet that if a civilian were accused of rape, had dope in their possession, and had corroborating testimony from their partner-in-crime, their ass would be on the next bus to Rikers. The two officers, instead, have been on administrative duty since the allegation was reported on December 7, receiving their pay and benefits. According to the NYPD recruitment website, an officer who has been with the force for more than 5 and a half years makes $90,829 (not including OT and benefits). A three-year vet (like Mata) makes $53,819 (again, not including OT and benefits). That means that every day that accused rapist Moreno is on the force, he is costing the taxpayers more than $284 a day. His lookout Mata costs taxpayers more than $147 per day. Since their December 7 administrative duties kicked in, they have cost the taxpayers more than $37,000 combined. I don't know about you, but personally I don't like my money going to pay an implicated rapist's salary.
Another thing I've noticed is that there is a severe lack of outspoken leaders on this issue. Bloomberg only offered the standard, "It is a very serious charge, obviously, and I don’t want to prejudice anything, but you can rest assured that the Internal Affairs Bureau is working very hard and doing an investigation." Ray Kelly has been silent thus far. Pat Lynch, the outspoken PBA president who called a suspect charged (but eventually acquitted) of killing Officer Timoshenko a "mongrel," has been uncharacteristically quiet. Why the sudden silence?
It seems that the so-called blue wall of silence held up for Moreno about as well as the 9th Ward levees did for the people of New Orleans. It should go without saying that Moreno and Mata should be fired and brought before a grand jury immediately. No more of our tax dollars should go to paying these two. Both should also pay back the taxpayers of New York for the time that they spent on administrative duty if convicted of these horrendous acts. It's pretty clear from what has been offered that Moreno will be spending time behind bars, the real question is for how long. But what about Mata? Is he some kind of accomplice, considering he appears to be Moreno's lookout and covered for him? At the least I hope Mata is fired, because he is clearly not to be trusted. It will be interesting to see what the official response to all of this is and how Bloomberg deals with it, considering this is an election year. So far the silence is deafening. All in all, it is disgraceful to the entire police department that a person like Moreno could be on the force for almost two decades and be capable of something like this. Let's hope the rest of the department stands by what is on every RMP on the force: "Courtesy, Professionalism, Respect." Peace.
Photos - Kenneth Moreno (Daily News), Moreno again (PBA Magazine), NYPD logo (Mesomorphosis)