What to Know
- A Paterson, New Jersey, police officer is facing charges for allegedly stopping cars, detaining occupants and searching without cause
- The officer and Eudy Ramos, also sometimes took cash and other items, prosecutors say
- Ramos' lawyer told Northjersey.com that 'he is innocent' and 'looks forward to clearing his name'
A police officer in New Jersey is accused of violating people’s civil rights in an elaborate scheme using code words to steal their cash, prosecutors say.
Eudy Ramos, 28, an officer with the Paterson Police Department, was charged in a nine-count indictment with conspiring to violate, and violating, the civil rights of people in Paterson, according to prosecutors. He is also charged with filing false police reports to conceal the alleged scheme.
Prosecutors said from 2016 to last April, Ramos and two other Paterson Police Department officers allegedly targeted, stopped and searched vehicles and passengers to illegally seize cash from them. Prosecutors added that they also stopped and searched people on the streets. The officers would then split the cash and file false reports by either omitting or lying about their alleged conduct.
Prosecutors said Ramos and the other officers would text code words to talk about their alleged scheme. In one instance, prosecutors said Ramos texted them asking if they were in the mood for “weekend mangoes” and referring to the illegal seizure of cash as “mango.”
Ramos’ lawyer, Miles Feinstein, told Northjersey.com that he “looks forward to clearing his name.”
"He's going to plead not guilty, and he's doing that because he is innocent," Feinstein told Northjersey.com.
Ramos is expected to be arraigned in federal court on a later date.
Ramos was previously charged in a separate criminal complaint last April, conspiring to deprive people of their civil rights under color of law, prosecutors said.