Man Claims Police Forced Him to Rap for His Freedom
(CNN) — A Brooklyn man says he was forced to rap for New York police officers in exchange for his freedom, according to a federal complaint.
Quinshon Shingles and his aunt, Donyale Kitchens, filed the complaint on Monday against the city of New York and three police officers.
According to the court documents, the officers were inquiring about a nearby shooting and unlawfully entered Kitchens’ apartment in December 2011. They handcuffed Shingles for more than an hour.
Upon learning that Shingles was an aspiring rapper, the officers offered to remove the handcuffs if he performed for them, the documents said.
“They said, ‘let me hear you rap, and if it’s good enough we’ll let you go,’ ” Shingles told CNN affiliate WABC.
After listening to Shingles rap, the officers eventually released him, the documents said.
The lyrics that won Shingles his freedom: “$30,000 in pocket that’s just loose change. I throw a billion in the skies like Bruce Wayne.”
Shingles, who is in his 20s, and Kitchens are seeking monetary damages after the violation of their constitutional rights and suffering a “significant loss of privacy, humiliation, mental anguish, depression,” the documents said.
“I felt like the old days, slavery. Like dance for the master, dance and sing for the master. It just messed me up inside,” Shingles told WABC.
A city Law Department spokesperson told CNN on Wednesday the office had not yet received a formal copy of the lawsuit and will review the allegations upon receipt.
This is the latest controversy for the New York Police Department this year after at least four New Yorkers have claimed they were racially profiled by police outside of department stores.
A federal appeals court recently blocked a federal judge’s ruling in August that the Department’s stop-and-frisk policy was unconstitutional in part because it unlawfully targeted blacks and Latinos.
By CNN’s Rande Iaboni