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NYPD investigating video of cops dirty dancing at West Indian parade

Cops at West Indian Day Parade

Cops at West Indian Day Parade Photo Credit: A police officer dances with a West Indian Day Parade participant.

During a Labor Day parade marred by gun violence that left several people wounded, including two police officers shot nearby, some of New York’s Finest were able to let loose — perhaps a bit too much.

In a video posted Sunday, at least three cops are seen dancing inappropriately during the West Indian Day Parade in Crown Heighs, grabbing scantily clad female dancers from behind and grinding and thrusting against them as parade-goers cheer.

The video was uploaded to on Sunday. “Its [sic] def this year's parade,” a spokesman said in an email, declining to say how they verified that, or who shot it.

New Yorkers we showed the video to were shocked.

“Oh my god,” said Laura Grimes, a 26-year-old from Astoria, said. "They're supposed to be looking out for our safety and not dancing with random girls,” adding that she believed the officers were “crossing the line.”

Erin Johnson, of the Lower East Side, agreed.

"There's nothing wrong with enjoying your job, and making the most of a situation, but people have problems with civilians bumping and grinding, much less people who are paid by the city to be watching out for everyone's safety," Johnson, 23, said.

Story continues below video.

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The NYPD said it was investigating the video.

The parade's organizers didn't return calls for comment.

“This is a very easy parade as far as I’m concerned to get swept up in and find yourself having a good time and maybe a too-good time,” said Eugene O’Donnell, a police studies professor at John Jay College and an ex-cop.  

Stephan Joseph, of East Flatbush,  who attended this year's parade, said he had seen police dancing with women at parades in the past. 

“You don’t expect to see a cop dancing with one of the people on the street during the parade,” added Joseph, 22. 

O'Donnell called the event "one of the highest-energy parades in town."

But it's also one of the city's most volatile parades.

This year, four people were wounded in at least two shootings along its Eastern Parkway route. After the parade ended, two officers were shot nearby in violence that left three people dead. 

(With Tim Herrera)

Follow reporters Marc Beja and Tim Herrera on Twitter at @Marc_Beja and @tim_herrera.


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