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Police officer hailed as hero for staying calm while suspect yells the N word at least 50 times

Elise Solé
A New York man shouted the N word at a black female police officer during his arrest, and social media has shown appreciation for her professionalism. (Photo: Getty Images)

A black police officer who stayed impressively calm while an arrested suspect screamed the N word at her — more than 50 times in one minute — has been called a role model for law enforcement.   

A cellphone video shot Wednesday shows the unnamed officer standing with suspect Ilya Freyman, 51, who is sitting in front of Ocean Auto Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., while he screams the slur. During the racist episode, the officer keeps her composure, avoiding eye contact with the man, even as he yells, “F*** you” to her colleague who tries to intervene. The video was originally posted to Facebook last week by user Swagnista Keda, who has reportedly deleted it

A representative from the New York Police Department told Yahoo Lifestyle that officers responded to a call from a neighboring gas station on Ocean Avenue after Freyman punched and shattered a glass booth. He was arrested on charges of criminal mischief, reckless endangerment, disorderly conduct, and harassment.

Photo: Twitter

The department declined to further comment, instead directing Yahoo Lifestyle to an Aug. 22 op-ed by police commissioner James O’Neill published in the New York Post, who characterized similar incidents in which suspects have harassed officers, “Sadly, nothing new.”

“Like police across our nation, New York City cops regularly experience scenes like these,” O’Neill wrote. “Overwhelmingly, our officers handle the situations with professionalism, discretion, and a stoicism that refuses to stoop to the camera-person’s level of base crassness.”

O’Neill continued, “As cops, we have to have thick skin. … Another thing that is true: NYPD officers know how to do their jobs with expertise and commitment to the public good. Let no one confuse smart, effective policing that trusts and empowers our cops with some silly, false notion of “standing down.” That does an enormous disservice to all New Yorkers.

Twitter called the arresting officer a “queen” and an example of ideal law enforcement. One user wondered whether Freyman would have been treated more harshly if he were a person of color. And someone commented that the other officers in the video did not try harder to silence Freyman.

(Photo: Twitter)
(Photo: Twitter)
(Photo: Twitter)
(Photo: Twitter)


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