[WATCH] Ex-Tennis Star James Blake Expected to Testify Against NYPD Officer Who Used Excessive Force

NEW YORK — By former pro tennis star James Blake’s account, the man approaching him in 2015 outside his hotel caused no alarm because he looked like an old high school buddy.

Blake found out the hard way that it was instead a plainclothes police officer who mistook him for a suspect in a fraud investigation.

Two years later, the arrest — captured in a security video showing the officer, without identifying himself, throwing Blake down on the sidewalk and handcuffing him — is the subject of a disciplinary trial at which Blake is expected to testify.

Officer James Frascatore this year rejected a deal asking him to forfeit vacation days to resolve New York Police Department internal charges that he used excessive force. An NYPD administrative judge will now hear the case beginning Tuesday and recommend a potentially more severe punishment, including dismissal from the nation’s largest police force, to the police commissioner.

Frascatore, who denies he did anything wrong, also will take the witness stand. He has been assigned to desk duty pending a decision about his future.

The officer “looks forward to correcting the false narrative which has surrounded this case for two years,” said his attorney, Stephen Worth.

The Blake episode came at a high point of the national debate over police use of force against unarmed black men. The 37-year-old American, once the No. 4 tennis player in the world, is the child of a black father and white mother; Frascatore is white.

The NYPD has said that Blake matched a photo of a suspect sought in the case and that race wasn’t a factor. But after the video was made public, city and police officials took the unusual step of apologizing and establishing in Blake’s name a fellowship aimed at helping people who accuse police of abuses to get full reviews by a police oversight agency.

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  • Mike

    Too bad Blake was not armed and shot the thug attacker, as he would have been cleared, as the cop was not in uniform. I hope the POS cop loses his job and pension and any settlement comes out of his personal finances!!!

  • uKatamitt

    damn, he didn’t even move a finger