AG sues former Bumpy's owner over false police report
Paul Nelson is reporting for the Times Union state Attorney General Letitia James is suing David Elmendorf, the former owner of the once-popular Bumpy’s Polar Freeze ice cream shop in Schenectady. In court papers, James' office alleges that Elmendorf made a bogus police report accusing people attending a Black Lives Matter rally outside his business were carrying weapons. In a statement March 10, announcing the suit, the AG staff said Elmendorf used protestors' “race and color as reasoning for the call” violating their civil rights as well as "their ability to practice their civil rights to peacefully protest when he threatened to use physical force and harassed protestors with racial slurs." James' action was the first civil matter brought by AG's Hate Crimes and Bias Prevention Unit. “Those who make racist and violent threats will be held accountable by my office with the full weight of the law,” stated James. “The charges against David Elmendorf should serve as a warning that hate crimes will not be tolerated on my watch and we will not allow any individual to use the color of someone’s skin as a weapon.” The case seeks to force Elmendorf to pay up to a $500 penalty for every time he tried to violate a protestor's right to peacefully protest and to stop him from imposing future threats to intimidate, coerce, or harass any persons or group of people because of their race,..." according to the announcement. Attorney James Mermigis of Long Island, who is representing Elmendorf, said his client "categorically denies every single allegation." In a statement, Schenectady County Attorney Chris Gardner and Mayor Gary McCarthy applauded James' office for taking action on the matter. Read the full story in the Times Union.