Pro tennis player James Blake is being sued by NYPD officer James Frascatore. Frascatore tackled Blake and arrested the tennis star in a case of mistaken identity. Frascatore is also suing the police department and the group prosecuting his misconduct case. In court papers Frascatore says city officials did not support him after video of the 2015 incident of him tackling and handcuffing Blake outside of a Manhattan hotel surfaced. Frascatore says Blake painted him as an “out of control and corrupt officer.” Blake wrote a book titled “Ways Of Grace” in which he described the 2015 incident. Frascatore said he was initially suspended, but then placed on desk duty. Frascatore claims that the prosecuting group leaked his disciplinary records to Blake, who then went on to do television interviews where he revealed the officers background, suggesting that he was “somehow a dangerous, violent officer.” By law, disciplinary records of police officers are supposed to be kept private. But as a citizen your records are not. When a police officer runs your identification during a traffic stop, he’ll instantly have the run down on your “disciplinary records.” I guess knowledge of one’s background is only supposed to go one way? Anyway, Frascatore’s lawsuit claims “Blake’s defamatory statements about Officer Frascatore were circulated to millions of readers and viewers in print, and online, and through mobile and social media.”
Police believed Blake was a suspect in a credit card ring back in 2015 when he was violently tackled and handcuffed by Frascatore, who treated Blake like he was guilty before even asking one question. Blake was later released after police realized they had made a mistake. It was Blake’s name and recognition of being a tennis superstar that probably ultimately led to his release without further legal action being taken by the police department. If this had been me or you, we most certainly would’ve been charged with whatever, and then had to go through the whole court process to prove our innocence. And if you happened to be unlucky enough not to be able to afford an expensive attorney to prove your innocence, then you probably would’ve just been shit out of luck. I’ve seen this movie before. Firsthand. Frascatore’s lawsuit seeks damages in excess of $75,000.