Viral NYPD Racial Profiling Video Was Staged

Smoking Gun, October 21, 2014

In a cynical and duplicitous attempt to capitalize on New York City’s documented racial profiling problems, a pair of bloggers have created a video purporting to show an NYPD officer stopping and frisking a pair of Muslim men for the crime of wearing traditional Islamic garments.

But the viral video is a sham, a staged production aimed to go viral and pile up views and YouTube channel subscriptions for its young creators, Brooklynites Adam Saleh and Sheikh Akbar, who get a piece of the revenue generated by ads that run before their videos play.

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Titled “Racial Profiling Experiment,” the 2:53 video was uploaded Sunday to YouTube, where it has already been viewed in excess of 135,000 times. The clip has received coverage in several publications, including the British newspaper The Independent and The Huffington Post.

The video opens with Saleh and Akbar loudly arguing as they walk down a Queens street. The men, dressed in jeans and t-shirts, shove each other and appear on the verge of exchanging blows. While this is transpiring, a purported NYPD officer stands just feet away. With his arms folded, the impassive cop–whose face has been blurred–does nothing as the pair seems on the verge of fighting. The scene is apparently being filmed from a parked car by a friend of Saleh and Akbar.

The video then jumps ahead 20 minutes, when Saleh and Akbar are again seen arguing on the same sidewalk. This time, however, Saleh is wearing a headdress and a white robe. Akbar has on a keffiyeh scarf and an abaya, a long shirt. In their YouTube description of the video, the men describe these garments as their “cultural clothes.”

This time, the quarreling duo is immediately confronted by the cop, who asks, “What’s all the arguing about? Why are you dressed like this?” Motioning to their clothes, he demands, “What is this?”  In short order, the patrolman shoves Saleh up against the wall and directs him to put his hands up and “open your legs.” During the cursory search that follows, the cop feels something in Saleh’s pocket and yells, “What is this?

What’s in your pocket?” When Saleh responds that it is his phone, the officer asks, “Is this a gun? Is that a knife?”

Oddly, the officer never bothers to remove the item to confirm that it is a phone and not a deadly weapon. Also, the cop does not appear concerned that Saleh’s friend is hovering directly behind him.

After Akbar is later subjected to a similarly perfunctory frisk, Saleh does the reveal. Removing the headdress, he tells the officer, “I’m the same guy from before. I came 20 minutes earlier, we had an argument, we hit each other, and you didn’t do anything.” Then, referring to the pair’s new clothes, Saleh added, “And now when we have this, you gonna come and do something to us?”

Confronted about his racial profiling and illegal searches, the cop appears befuddled and stripped of his bravado. He is left to warn a passerby–whose timing is impeccable–to “Take a walk before I arrest you for obstruction.”

The video is a marvelously tidy example of the NYPD’s supposedly wicked ways. At the clip’s end, Saleh and Akbar appear to explain, “What you just saw is what we always go through when we’re filming with our culture clothing on.” Saleh then claims that the pair had been out shooting another video when “police happen to, like, follow us and racial profile us. So we stopped filming that video and we decided to make this video for you guys. And it happened in one chance.”

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An NYPD source who last night viewed the clip at TSG’s request said that an officer from the local police precinct (the 110th in nearby Elmhurst) would not be standing patrol by himself on a deserted street in the middle of the day. As for the purported officer’s frisking technique, the NYPD veteran laughed, “That’s not how they teach you in the academy.” He also remarked that it was “inconceivable” that an officer would ask a Muslim man, “Why are you dressed like this?”

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A second source, a recently retired NYPD detective who also watched the “profiling” video at TSG’s request, branded it an “obvious hoax” intended to “smear” police.

If that was the intent of Saleh and Akbar, they appear to have succeeded. According to The Huffington Post, the video provides a “small glimpse into the ugly world of racial profiling.” The news site later updated its piece to indicate that the clip’s authenticity could not be verified, and that NYPD officials are reviewing the video.

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  • And this is why a lot of cops have a big problem with being recorded by civilians. Not because they oppose it in principle, it’s just that they know that video can be cut and spliced to engineer a myth, or that they’re just looking for a gotcha moment that can be used in a lawsuit.

    It also has to do with the power of the moving image from the standpoint of propaganda and public relations.

    • Publius Pompilius Quietus

      Video-taping can also be used as a tool to document genuine abuse of power, to which policemen are not strangers. Maybe it can be used as a tool of misinformation, too, but letting police officers do whatever they like without accountability is a much worse alternative. And make no mistake: without documentation like video tape, it is very hard for citizens to hold police officers accountable, because then it is only your word against their. In that instance, their word always wins.

    • The Worlds Scapegoat

      The Police can also edit their own tape and often do. Their cameras also break down and fail to record what happened at the most opportune time (when the police do something wrong). Numerous times I have been harassed by police and when I go to the station to file a complaint and demand to watch the police car’s video, I am told that the cars on-board camera wasn’t working: How convenient for the police. Around here they have rookie/new cops randomly pull people over for “training exercises” even though the person getting pulled over didn’t do anything wrong. They seem to want to test the policeman’s ability to react to people who are pulled over for no reason.

      • Sorta like all those inconvenient IRS hard drive crashes? The odds of which are so long that I have a better chance per the laws of quantum mechanics to walk through a brick wall some time today.

  • Frank_DeScushin

    The Huffington Post, The Independent, and most Liberals do not care if the video is a hoax. They are simply looking for instances, any instances whether legitimate or not, that confirm their bias. The damage is done once the original article is published, and any subsequent correction is sure to be buried and a scintilla the size of the original article. For Liberals, the ends (a “teaching lesson” on profiling in this instance) justify the means (an obvious hoax in this instance.)

    • Publius Pompilius Quietus

      Liberals have made white people into a scapegoat, which they seldom can back up with evidence, so they spring on any chance to identify the terrible white racist. One can hardly blame them, seeing that their whole ideology is based on the idea that all whites are inherently racist and hateful, that they are overjoyed when find anything resembling a white racist.

    • KyraNelson

      Oh, they jumped on that “story” like a bunny in heat, those paragons of journalistic virtue. They suffer from fatal leftarditis and they will never get well.

    • Basketeddie

      Remember the Tawana Brawley hoax that catapulted Al Sharpton to stardom among the room temperature IQ crowd. That was also deemed a “teaching lesson”

  • Anna Tree

    Fake muslims profiling. Fake gays and trans beatings. Fake black women rapes…

    • Guest

      Yuck. Who would EVER want to rape a black woman? I cringe at the thought.

      • Kenner

        Black men.

      • Lionel Hutz

        “I’ve heard…” that there are many who enjoy that kind of roleplay with white guys.

  • Anna Tree

    “Non-whites and leftists accuse whites of thinking something that they don’t think and that they deny thinking but they should think.” Jared Taylor…

  • Truthseeker

    Keep on hoaxing, diversity. The joke will be on you once Whites are hip to the whole scheme and you can’t milk their propensity for guilt anymore.

  • IstvanIN

    Shouldn’t someone be arrested for impersonating a police officer?

    • I like the way you think! But I’m thinking that this incident would be treated like a movie production, where the cop is an actor.

  • These two clowns are the 21st century Milli Vanilli. Remember the two black singers who didn’t actually sing on their records and ended up totally disgraced? Total fakes.

    If the Muzzie Milli and Vanilli were doing this out of principle the libtards would be ecstatic, fake or not, but they did it to make MONEY. Libtards hate it when people try to make money, so these guys will quickly be forgotten. They’re an embarrassment to liberals.

    • The Worlds Scapegoat

      I remember. The man pulling their strings was jewish. He found them in a German ghetto.

      .

  • dd121

    Are the guys who did this video the same one’s who provoked all those Muslims in Libya?

  • LIBERTYSINCURSION

    Man I tell you, police officers are probably the most unappreciated, lied about and down right hated people in the entire country. Liberals will instantly believe a Michael Brown and his lying, “he was shot in the back – we was on our way to grandma’s house – he had his hands up – we didn’t do nuffins”, pal who just committed a strong arm robbery. Before they will trust the very people that they themselves will call for help when they meet up with their very own Michael Brown in an alley somewhere.

  • Tim_in_Indiana

    According to The Huffington Post, the video provides a “small glimpse into the ugly world of racial profiling.”

    It’s actually a small glimpse into the ugly world of HuffPo “journalism.”

  • Adolf Verloc

    I don’t know what sort of outfits those are supposed to be, but they are not particularly Middle Eastern or Arabic. The guy with the kheffiyah or ghutra is wearing it more like a do-rag.

  • Ron Cheaters

    As a former Audio Technician, it’s quite obvious the cop has a microphone… if he doesn’t then there would have to be a boom and a gaffer overhead with a shotgun microphone aimed at the cop. Omni-directional microphones would differ in EITHER volume OR sound quality of the officer or participants IF the sound envelope were to be manipulated in post-production. Which it clearly wasn’t.. and if it was a “true story ASA” they would want that characteristic to be evident..
    So Kudo’s to you guys.. your post-production team was soo good at what they do, yet so incompetent not to have seen the obvious.

  • KyraNelson

    Men walking around in grimy nightgowns in public IS a crime.

  • KyraNelson

    Pallywood comes to a theatre near you

  • ViktorNN

    If only the cops were out there hassling Muslims all the time. *sigh*

  • Manxman3

    The really interesting thing about this video is the fact that so many people have been gullible enough to overlook the obvious fact that this is a fake. No policeman searches anyone like that or stands around doing nothing the rest of the day.

    The fact it made international news and the thousands of comments it has attracted (complaining about ‘racism’ and evil white people), merely shows how brainwashed most people are to the extent they will look for racism where none exists.

  • Manxman3

    I see that having been caught out trying to pass this off as police ‘racism’ they have now changed the description to say that it is a “dramatisation”. I wonder if the newspapers will retract their pathetic accusations.

  • Travis Lee

    Something fishy here. A cop, alone, standing in one place for more than 20 minutes?

    Doesn’t look like he is wearing a vest, and he just looks fake to me.

  • Basketeddie

    The guys who did this film are imbeciles. The acting was horrendous (especially the cop) and it was so obvious a hoax, yet the libtards and their black pets truly believe it to be real. At least show a little creativity in your lies. But I guess they figure why bother when ignorance is on their side. It can’t be too much longer before the pendulum swings the other way.