In 2002, after a killer rapist confessed to the crime, a judge vacated the five defendants’ convictions.
The de Blasio administration later paid the five a $41 million settlement.
Last year, Salaam ran on his biography — and only that — to win a Harlem council seat.
Salaam hadn’t even lived in New York for six years and had no notion of running until Harlem Democrats recruited him.
With his advisers attuned to the polls — and aware Harlem voters aren’t “Defund the police” supporters — he ran as a moderate.
Now he’s revealing his enduring anger at police.
He wasn’t yet a sitting councilman in December when the chamber voted to force police to make a detailed record of every engagement they initiate with the public — even if it’s just to ask a woman walking alone at night if she’s alright.
But by last week, maybe feeling left out, he wanted the world to know he supports the How Many Stops Act.
Saturday morning, he got the spotlight, releasing a bombshell statement: The night before, “while driving with my wife and children and listening in to a call with my Council colleagues on speakerphone, I was pulled over” in Harlem.
“I introduced myself as Councilman Yusef Salaam” and “asked the officer why I was pulled over. Instead of answering my question, the officer stated, ‘We’re done here,’ and proceeded to walk away.”
Salaam said this stop is reason to override the mayor: “The fact that the officer did not provide a rationale . . . highlights the need for greater transparency” to prevent “racial profiling.”
He also said this purportedly “unconstitutional” stop is why he wouldn’t ride along with the police that night, apparently forgetting his earlier rejection of such a ride-along anyway.
Salaam seemed to think the police would cower and apologize.
Instead, they released their rationale for the stop — and the video.
Police stopped Salaam because his car’s windows are illegally tinted.
Dark tint is illegal because it’s dangerous.
Pedestrians, cyclists and other drivers can’t see whether the driver can see them — and police can’t see whether the driver is doing something dangerous, like texting.
(Nor can they see the driver’s race — meaning they’re not racially profiling.)
And Salaam’s BMW has a Georgia plate (notwithstanding the councilman’s New York residency): Police saw an out-of-state driver unfamiliar with our state’s safe-driving laws.
What wasn’t justified was the cop immediately walking away when Salaam IDed himself as an elected official.
Cops are used to this “Don’t you know who I am?” stance, and they know they’ll get in trouble if they ticket important folk.
If the council wants to fix something, this low-grade corruption is a good candidate.