Friday, December 13, 2002
Casey says he has received death threats
HOBOKEN, N.J. -- Former Penn State quarterback Rashard Casey has sued Hoboken police, saying he received hate mail and death threats after being charged last spring with assaulting an off-duty officer.
A grand jury declined to indict Casey, a former Hoboken High School star, on charges he beat off-duty officer Patrick D. Fitzsimmons unconscious outside a Hoboken bar on May 14, 2000. It did return a third-degree aggravated assault charge against Casey's former high school teammate Desmond Miller.
Police said Casey, who is black, had attacked Fitzsimmons, who is white, because he was out with a black woman.
"Some of the comments from the police were rough," said Casey's attorney, Dennis McAlevy. "He received hate mail and death threats. His mother received threats. It was brutal and it was exacerbated by the powers that be."
Casey seeks unspecified damages in the lawsuit filed Friday in Superior Court in Jersey City. He names Police Director Carmen LaBruno, the city of Hoboken, the Hoboken Police Department and officers who arrested him.
The lawsuit said police wrongly charged Casey and made statements alleging he attacked Fitzsimmons because of his race, all of which caused Casey severe stress. Some of the hate mail Casey received contained racial slurs, his lawyer said.
LaBruno said Casey is suing because he is looking for money he has been unable to earn in the NFL. Casey, who graduated from Penn State this year, attended the New York Jets' three-day minicamp this spring but was not signed.
"He's looking for what he couldn't get on the football field through the back door," LaBruno told the New York Daily News in Tuesday's editions.