SOUNDVIEW — NYPD officers shackled an 8-months-pregnant Bronx woman in premature labor to a hospital bed for three days as retaliation for her not dropping charges against a neighbor after they were both arrested for an altercation, the woman says.
Krisalry Reyes, 26, plans to sue the NYPD for $5 million, claiming officers caused her emotional distress and jeopardized the health of her unborn son by restraining her with handcuffs and leg shackles while she was treated at Montefiore Medical Center in July.
She filed a notice of claim last month with the city comptroller’s office — the first step in bringing a lawsuit against the city.
“Police officers from the 43rd Precinct tried to coerce me to drop the charges I was asserting against my neighbor, and after I refused, police officers from the 43rd precinct ordered that my leg be shackled to the bed rail as well, and I remained that way, until July 28, 2015, amongst other indignities and concerns about my child’s and my wellbeing,” Reyes said in an affidavit supplementing the notice of claim.
Her lawyer, Jonathan Gleit, said her husband made a complaint with the Civilian Complaint Review Board about the incident. The board does not handle shackle allegations but referred the matter to the Internal Affairs Bureau, according to Gleit.
Gleit said that the NYPD told him this week that his client's complaint was sent from Internal Affairs to Patrol Borough Bronx, which is currently reviewing the allegations.
“Regardless of the circumstances, a woman in that advanced state of pregnancy should never be placed into shackles,” Gleit told DNAinfo New York. “It’s inhumane and it goes against all standards of decency. I’m outraged by it.”
Gleit said the altercation began when Reyes' 7-year-old son accidentally rode his bicycle into a neighbor near their Soundview apartment. Reyes, her mother-in-law and the neighbor began arguing, and Reyes called police when the altercation escalated, Gleit said.
The responding officers ended up taking the neighbor and Reyes’ mother-in-law to the 43rd Precinct stationhouse, where they were issued desk appearance tickets.
Reyes, who works as a cashier at a Manhattan restaurant, was also arrested, but taken to Montefiore because she began experiencing signs of premature labor, according to the notice of claim.
The notice of claim said that the shackling caused Reyes severe emotional distress, fetal stress, an elevated heart rate and fear of miscarriage.
The 35-week-pregnant Reyes spent three days at Montefiore in the shackles, according to the notice of claim.
After her release from Montefiore, she was taken to the 43rd Precinct stationhouse. She was charged with a misdemeanor attempted assault and a harassment violation and was then released, Gleit said.
A judge later dismissed the charges, Gleit said.
Reyes has since given birth to a son.
The NYPD did not respond to a request for comment.
The city Law Department said it was not involved because Reyes had not filed a lawsuit yet — only the notice of claim.
"At this point it’s at the claims stage and the city comptroller is reviewing the matter. If this becomes litigation, the Law Department will review all the claims in the lawsuit and respond accordingly,” said spokesman Nick Paolucci.
The CCRB did investigate one of Reyes' allegations — that one of the arresting officers did not provide his name. The CCRB sent Reyes a letter this week saying that the allegation was unfounded.