Patrick Bobilin, who ran to represent District 76 (Upper East Side, Roosevelt Island) in the 2022 State Assembly race – ultimately losing to Rebecca Seawright – recorded an unexpected encounter he had with a pair of police officers on the evening of Friday, January 6.
The former political candidate was on a run, and as he was making his way through the crosswalk on East 58th Street and Lexington Avenue, he claims he was almost hit by an NYPD vehicle turning onto the street.
In response to the close call, the 39-year-old Bobilin says he slapped the back of the car, clarifying upon our request that his slap was comparable to “the weight of a jovial slap on the back.”
Then, Bobilin alleges the officers drove north against rush hour traffic on Lexington Avenue, pursuing him from 58th to 62nd streets.
When we asked Bobilin if he was intentionally running “from” the police, he clarified that he was “out for a run.”
“They came out threatening to tase me, causing a huge scene because after almost hitting me, again, [I] tapped the back of their vehicle,” Bobilin adds in an Instagram story – which he titled “ACAB Story” (ACAB is an acronym for “All Cops Are Bastards”).
During a video Bobilin shared on Twitter (headlined “Why defund NYPD?”) – which only shows the incident’s tail end – one of the officers can be heard saying “I didn’t hit you at all” and “you ran in front of our vehicle.” The other officer tells Bobilin that they did in fact see him, and argued that he had enough room.
Why defund NYPD?
It’s because tonight, after cops saw me and purposely didn’t stop when I was in the crosswalk, I slapped the back of the vehicle to let them know how close I was.
They pursued 6 blox, against traffic during rush hour, hands on tasers, with fear in their hearts pic.twitter.com/Zqu9w8dlpy
— Patrick Bobilin 🌹🦷👻 (@PatrickForNYC) January 7, 2023
In response to our inquiry, the NYPD provided us with the following statement about this incident:
“On January 6, 2023 at approximately [6:47 p.m.], officers from the 19th Precinct were on patrol in a marked police vehicle on Lexington Avenue making a left turn onto East 59th Street. At this time they clearly observed a male on the sidewalk while they were making the turn. After completing the turn, the officers heard a loud bang emanating from the rear of the vehicle and realized someone had struck the rear window of their marked police vehicle for an unknown reason. The officers canvassed the area and observed the male who struck the police vehicle. When the male spotted the police vehicle, he began to flee. The officers approached the male and then proceeded to inquire about what had just occurred. The male stated he struck the rear window of the marked police car. There was no damage to the vehicle. There were no arrests or summonses issued.”