Carey Norris is a polite, soft spoken guy who happens to be 6’7″ tall with an athletic build. In fact, the night of this incident, he had just come home from tryouts being held in New York by various European basketball teams. It was a long day, and when he got home a couple of his friends were hanging out in front of his building in Harlem when he got home. It was a hot Summer night. He went to a bodega to get a Gatorade and came back to hang out and tell them about the tryouts.
Just a few minutes later, some cops roll in an unmarked car. Carey and his friends don’t think anything about it until the car does a u-turn a little further down the block and drives back towards them in the wrong lane. It’s a team led by Sergeant Paul Scott. They immediately demand id., to which Carey responds it’s in his apartment in the building. They demand to frisk him and he asks “why”, which of course, is often a problem.
At that point, they tell Carey to put his hands behind his back. When he again asks “why”, one of the three cops charges towards him to grab his hands. It was the shortest cop of the 4 that were there. Really short, about 5’3″ or so. To avoid being arrested, Carey simply holds his arms and hands up in the air, like a stick up. And the short officer starts jumping to grab an arm, but he can’t reach. When jumping doesn’t work he starts to kind of climb up Carey, but he can’t do it (he was pudgy and out of shape too). A couple of the other cops, who seemingly didn’t want to get involved, but who couldn’t let their brother officer continue to humiliate himself, brought Carey down and arrested him.
He was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest; yes, by holding his arms up so the short cop couldn’t reach them. In the paperwork, the arresting officer said he was stopped and frisked in the first place because he was “moving furtively” “in the shadows” and that he had a bulge in his waistband (his wallet).
He was put through the system and the charges were dismissed, for, you know, being ridiculous. He missed a follow up tryout the next afternoon, because he was in jail for no reason. He wasn’t drafted by the team.
Carey was one of the nicer guys to come through our civil rights firm. He was what you might call a gentle giant. That night, he was buzzing about how his basketball tryouts went, and wanted to tell his friends about it. 30 Hours later he got back home and threw himself into bed after suffering one of the worst buzz kills ever.
And this team of cops still prowl the Harlem nights, we hear.