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Detectives charged in lying about arrest

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A Queens grand jury indicted two NYPD detectives for allegedly filing false paperwork and charged one with lying under oath about the August 2014 arrest of a man falsely accused of selling crack cocaine.

The two detectives also were charged last month with filing false statements in a separate 2014 incident in which a Washington Heights man was wrongly accused of gun posession, according to the Manhattan District Attorney.

Detectives Kevin Desormeau and Sasha Neve, both 33 years old and from Long Island, are 10-year veterans of the NYPD and were previously assigned to the NYPD Gang Unit when they allegedly made the false accusation.

Queens DA Richard Brown said Desormeau and Neve arrested a man for allegedly selling cocaine to a woman near the intersection of 108th Avenue and Guy R. Brewer Boulevard in Jamaica at about 6:40 p.m. on Aug. 28, 2014. Desormeau contended in the criminal complaint that he arrested the man after seeing him exchange something with the woman, and upon searching him after he was arrested, allegedly found rock cocaine in the waistband of his pants.

Desormeau later testified before the grand jury on Jan. 16, 2015, that he saw the man exchange something with two women he did not apprehend and found a twist of crack cocaine upon the arrest. In November 2015, the DA said Desormeau testified in a court hearing that he saw the man exchange cash for drugs with an unidentified woman. The detective said he found a plastic bag of crack cocaine and $725 in cash upon arresting the man.

The accused man’s attorney presented DA Brown’s office with a video recording taken in a pool hall at the stated time of the arrest on Aug. 28, 2014. The video showed the accused man playing pool when the two detectives entered the pool hall. The video showed them taking the man outside, which contradicted Desormeau’s account.

The accused man spent 51 days in Rikers Island under arrest before the charges were dropped.

Desormeau faces up to seven years in prison if he is convicted, while Neve, who filed the false paperwork, faces as much as four years.

Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance said Desormeau and Neve (whose last name is listed as Cordoba in the Manhattan indictment) arrested a 38-year-old man inside a residence on West 175th Street in Manhattan on Nov. 6, 2014 for gun possession.

Neve signed a criminal complaint and testified in a search warrant application as well as grand jury testimony. The accused man was indicted for firearm possession, but a subsequent investigation led to those charges being dropped and the indictment of the officers.

“When members of law enforcement commit misconduct, they threaten the credibility of our work and the safety of the citizens whom we are sworn to protect,” Vance said about the charges.

Reach reporter Patrick Donachie by e-mail at pdonachie@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4573.

Updated 12:32 am, July 10, 2018
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