March 24, 2005
Detective Rudy Toolasprashad, the former Community Officer at the 102nd Precinct in Ozone Park, will not face criminal charges in connection with the yearlong NYPD Internal Affairs Division (IAD) investigation, according to his attorney Todd Greenberg.
Greenberg, of the law firm Addabbo & Greenberg told Queens Ledger that Queens District Attorney's office advised him they will not be prosecuting Toolasprashad and will be referring the matter back to IAD however the Department could still bring internal charges against Toolasprashad.
The IAD investigation began in February 2004 amid allegations reported in the press that Detective Toolasprashad and other 102nd Precinct detectives took bribes from area merchants. The reports indicated Toolasprashad may have taken bribes for special parking plaques and fair permits and officers were being investigated for possibly allowing others to bypass procedures to obtain new passports after the Cultural Society's gurdwara burned down in 2002.
"We're certainly very pleased that the criminal investigation concluded, we were confident that it would conclude because we knew that detective Rudy didn't do anything wrong" said Greenberg. "We're anxious now to take the next step so the police department can get him back into the community as a police officer where he is needed the most."
Greenberg said that it is Toolasprashad's desire to go back to the 102nd Precinct community that he "loves very dearly." His attorney said that many members of the community are delighted with the district attorney's decision and didn't expect anything other than this result. He added that community resident said their full support is behind Detective Rudy and they can't wait until he gets back into the community. Toolasprashad has been working for the past year at the NYPD's Housing Bureau in Brooklyn, where he was reassigned in February 2004 pending the outcome of this investigation.
When the IAD investigation first began last year community leaders and local elected officials lined up to support Toolasprashad. Maria Thompson, president of the 102nd Precinct Community Council called him "one of our best Community Affairs officers." "Detective Toolasprashad established an excellent reputation and is held in high regard," praised Thomson, adding that he was a hardworking, dedicated officer of great integrity.
Councilman Allan Jennings expressed his support for Toolasprashad, as did the offices of Assemblyman Brian McLaughlin and State Senator Serphin Maltese. Also supporting Detective Toolasprashad was Deputy Inspector Michael Blake.
"If I did not trust Rudy, he would not have been the Community Affairs Officer," Blake stated matter-of-factly.
Latchmann Budhai, the treasurer of the community council and member of Community Board 9, said that because of Toolasprashad people have been able to learn each other's culture. Also standing behind Toolasprashad was community resident Jagir Singh, who doesn't quibble over his faith that the detective's name will be cleared.
"It will be proved he is innocent, without any doubt." Detective Toolasprashad, 39 joined the police department in June of 1992. After graduating from the police academy he was assigned to the 46th precinct in the South Bronx, and subsequently he was assigned to the Deputy Commission for Community Affairs. He worked in the Youth Division. In March of 1999, Toolasprashad was assigned as a community affairs officer in the 102nd Precinct after community leaders in the largely Guyanese community requested a community affairs officer who would bridge the gap between the police and community.