7 y/o kid handcuffed, arrested, interrogated for hours over $5 theft

My daughter, a California public defender, sent me this link from the New York Post.  I include the entire text of her message below:


While the actual timeline is being disputed by the NYPD, the basic facts of the story are that the kid was accused of stealing $5 from another kid.  After receiving a 911 call alleging assault and robbery, the police came to the kid’s school, handcuffed him, and held him there for several hours.  They then took him to the police department for questioning where they held him for another several hours, eventually charging him with robbery.

Wilson Reyes at NY police station

Wilson Reyes at NY police station

Luckily the kid’s mom snapped a picture.  When cops are involved in any abuse of power, the rule is that if you don’t have pictures, it never happened.  Hell, even if there are pictures, cops still often tell a story that is at odds with the visual evidence.

Of course, this kind of child abuse happens because there are no consequences to those involved.  Even if the family wins its $250 million lawsuit against NY and the NYPD, its the taxpayers who will ultimately foot the bill.

Oh.  One more thing.  The kid was innocent. The charges were dropped when another kid admitted to the theft.

2 thoughts on “7 y/o kid handcuffed, arrested, interrogated for hours over $5 theft

  1. whistle

    This article presents a slightly different story. Is says some other kid (Javonne) saw Wilson take the money.

    Not that it really matters. No reason to handcuff the kid and interrogate him for hours over children being children.

  2. Dave Krueger

    Interesting. I wonder if we’ll ever hear what really happened. I have the feeling it will drop out of the news before it’s resolved. What about the supposed other kid who admitted to the theft?

    I don’t think much of the excuse that the cops were simply “following the rules” (as claimed in a related Daily News story). Rules are now routinely used as a substitute for common sense. An example of that are the “zero tolerance” rules that treat everyone the same even when the infraction is ludicrous. Of course, a big part of the problem with cops is that they have collectively established a reputation for fabricating facts to justify what they’ve done, so their claims can’t easily be accepted without corroborating evidence.

    Stuff like this was handled by school principles and parents when I was a kid, at least until kids were older. Personally, if the kid is really as bad as the Seth Acevedo says he is and if other disciplinary measured hadn’t worked, then the kid should probably have been booted out of school a long time ago. Even if you believe people are born with a right to “free” education, I don’t think that comes with a right to terrorize other kids.

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