Former US tennis star James Blake has met with New York’s mayor and police commissioner, after he was mistaken for a crime suspect and handcuffed and crash tackled by a plain clothes policeman.
“We’re not looking for a quick lawsuit,” Blake said after a meeting he described as very productive. “We’re not looking for anything that’s going to be a quick and easy solution.
“We’re looking for a lasting, positive impact on the city and on the police force.”
Blake said the theme of the meeting with Mayor Bill de Blasio and police Commissioner William Bratton was accountability.
“(De Blasio) spoke very clearly in there about not just making short-term changes, not making a change that’s going to make a difference today that’s going to be gone tomorrow but having an impact that’s going to affect even generations,” Blake said.
The arresting officer, James Frascatore, has been placed on desk duty.
He has been with the New York Police Department for four years and has been named in several civil rights lawsuits alleging excessive force.
He also has been the subject of four civilian complaints, an above-average number for an NYPD officer, according to complaint data.
Blake had said the officer should be fired, but following the meeting he said he understands due process, “the fact that he has rights in the court.”
“I’m willing to respect that, and I’ll be aware how the trial, how the process takes place,” Blake said.
The mayor also described Monday’s meeting as productive.
“We pledged a fair and expeditious investigation into his case and to find further common ground as we continue the work of reform,” de Blasio said in a statement.