This weekend more details emerged in the case of NYPD Officers Kenneth Moreno and Franklin Mata who are accused of raping a woman on the Lower East Side after a taxi driver called 911 to report a drunken fare. Moreno and Mata were the responding officers and instead of displaying the "Courtesy, Professionalism, Respect" we see emblazoned on all NYPD patrol cars, they allegedly raped the woman while she drifted in and out of consciousness.
The details come from a notice of claim filed by the victim, who remains unidentified, seeking $5 million total for the heinous act. Among the new details is the fact that the officers stole her BlackBerry and called her mother and brother in an effort to intimidate the victim from coming forward.
The timeline of events is equally disturbing. The victim was out having drinks at a Brooklyn club last December 6 and into the morning hours of December 7, when her friends put her into a yellow cab to take her home because she was highly intoxicated. When the cab driver pulled up to her apartment he could not get her out of the cab so he called police. That's when Moreno and Mata showed up. The officers escorted the woman into her apartment and left, but returned less than an hour later and gained entry to the building by telling a resident that they were investigating a noise complaint behind the building (which was untrue). They entered the victim's apartment with a key that they had stolen from the woman earlier. They were in the apartment for 17 minutes but had to leave when called to a traffic accident.
Once they were done with the accident scene the two are alleged to have made a false 911 call saying that there was a drunk homeless man two buildings down from the victim's so that they could return to the area. They went to the woman's apartment after being dispatched to the fake homeless man. This is when the alleged rape took place, with Mata acting as lookout and Moreno raping the victim while she lie face down on her bed after she vomited a few times. After being in the apartment for more than a half-hour the pair left and this is when the woman reported the rape.
The victim was able to meet with Moreno after the rape and secretly recorded him apologizing to her for having sex with her. Moreno has also admitted to having sex with the woman during the investigation, but he claims that it was consensual. Now we all know that when a person is legally drunk (and if someone is puking from alcohol poisoning, it's a pretty good indicator that they are legally drunk) they cannot legally consent to sex. And when you have sex with someone who cannot legally consent to sex, it's called rape.
Even Ray Kelly, who rarely criticizes his officers in public, called the two's actions "egregious" and a "shocking aberration." The two were charged with rape, burglary, and official misconduct back in April, have pleaded not guilty, and have a scheduled court appearance for September 16. You would think given their charges and Kelly's own outrage over the incident that these two would not be working for the NYPD anymore. You would be wrong. Despite the fact that Moreno has admitted that he had sex with a drunken woman WHILE ON DUTY, he and Mata continue to work for the NYPD in administrative duties. That means that our taxes are going to pay for their salary and benefits while they wait for the inevitable firing from the force and convictions on at least some of the charges. Top that off with the tax dollars that will have to be used to pay the victim her settlement money, and we're really in the hole. If Ray Kelly truly thought that what these officers did was egregious and a shocking aberration, he would do more than simply say it; he would show it by firing them. Peace.
Photos - NYPD Officers Kenneth Moreno (l.) and Franklin Mata (NYPost)