Philadelphia Police officer Matthew Zagursky has been taken off street patrol, as well as had his firearm taken, after videos posted online showed the officer extorting drivers during a traffic stop.
In one video, Zagursky can be seen holding up several tickets to a police fundraiser to a driver, informing him he has the choice of either purchasing the tickets, or having his car towed for having an expired registration.
After the driver agrees to purchase two for the price of $10 each, the driver is then told his passenger must purchase a ticket as well or that the car will still be towed. The final exchange was 3 tickets for $30.
“Nothing he did was right Commissioner Ramsey said”
Police commissioner Charles H. Ramsey took immediate action to rectify the situation after learning of the video during a morning briefing, and told reporters he felt Zagursky to be an “embarrassment’ to the force and that what he had done was clearly “illegal.”
“Nothing he did was right,” Commissioner Ramsey said.
The police commissioner conveyed that Zagursky would not yet be suspended, but remain on active duty pending an official IA probe which would take place immediately.
In another video Zagursky is seen giving a motorist a hard time regarding the color of his pink windshield wipers. After being informed they are the motorist’s way of supporting victims of breast cancer, Zagursky replies “Breast cancer I can understand, but can’t you support breast cancer another way; you look like you’re a fruitcake. You know, what the hell?
Police are still working to learn the identities of the motorists by investigating the sources of the videos posted online to social media and at this time haven’t confirmed their identities.
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