NYC Pays Man $42,500 After Mistaking Peppermint Candies for Crack Cocaine

Really?

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

If you are wise, you will no longer carry hard, sugary candy of any kind in your pockets while walking the streets of NYC. According to DNAinfo, 57-year-old Staten Island resident George Pringle was arrested two years ago after police found peppermint candy in his pocket, insisted it was crack cocaine, refused to field-test, and arrested him. How’s this for irony: Pringle is a substance abuse counselor.

The city settled Pringle’s false-arrest lawsuit with a $42,500 payment earlier this month. DNAinfo reached out to Pringle’s lawyer, Jason Leventhal, for more information:

“These officers knew it was a piece of candy and intentionally did not field test it,” law firm partner Jason Leventhal said in a statement.

“The NYPD’s failure to require a routine field test for all drug arrests endangers the constitutional rights of all New Yorkers.”

This isn’t an isolated incident of candy mistaken for illegal drugs. Just last week, Grub Street reported that Brooklyn resident Love Olatunjiojo ”was detained for possession of what cops thought was crystal meth, but were actually just some red and blue Jolly Ranchers.” The cops claimed the Jolly Ranchers field-tested positive for drugs and Olatunjiojo spent the next 24 hours in jail while the confused cops sorted everything out. Love Olatunjiojo is suing for emotional distress and damages.

[via DNAinfo, Grub Street]

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