Minati Roychoudhuri, a college professor, was pulled over a few months ago for an improper lane change and cited. She fought the ticket, but not by the usual means of mitigation in a court of law.
She decided that she would throw down the oh-so-tired race card, claiming she was ‘unfairly and racially profiled’ by a state trooper, alleging that he asked her if she spoke English.
The thing she didn’t think about was the fact that most police officer’s vehicles are equipped with AT LEAST audio recording and video recording these days. The audio led to an arrest warrant issued against her, and she turned herself in on July 28.
After her traffic stop, the professor at Capital Community College, wrote a scathing and dishonest letter to the commissioner of the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection. In it, she accused the trooper of pulling her over based on race. The Connecticut State Police Union identified the trooper involved as John Such with Troop H.
Here is her letter:
“An unmarked police car with flashing light stopped me on the ramp after I had taken the exit. The policeman asked me if I could speak English and if I knew why he had stopped me,” Roychoudhuri wrote in her letter, according to WTIC-TV. “I said, ‘yes’ to speaking English and ‘no’ to why he had stopped me. He then asked me for my driver’s license and registration. He returned with an envelope and said that I could simply mail in the infraction.
“The officer did not give me any reason as to why had stopped me. His asking if I could speak English shows that he had racially profiled me and was not able to give me a concrete reason for stopping me,” she continued in her letter. “Further, the officer had checked ‘Hispanic’ in the race category in the infraction ticket. I am a Professor in English at Capital Community College, I teach about diversity and the negative impact of racial profiling, I have now become a target of the same insidious behavior! It is easy to connect the dots with the nationwide racial profiling which has led to serious consequences.”
According to TheBlaze, Roychoudhuri said that she wanted the infraction dropped and the officer to be reprimanded in some way. She also sent her letter to a senator and state legislator. WTIC noted that she signed a statement with investigators regarding her allegations.
The Connecticut State Police Internal Affairs office concluded Roychoudhuri’s allegations were false and the trooper was exonerated on all charges, a news release stated. Some of that investigation included the recorded exchange between Roychoudhuri and the trooper.
Transcript of the audio posted by WTIC not only revealed that the trooper stated within seconds why Roychoudhuri was pulled over but also revealed that he in no way asked if she spoke English.
Here is a transcript of the conversation between Roychoudhuri and the officer, from FOX CT:
Officer: Hi ma’am, do you know why I’m stopping you today?
O: OK. There’s that big gore area with white lines painted across it and you cut in front of it, in front of me, thinking it’s a lane or something. You have to wait until it’s a dotted white line. License and registration.
(She handed him insurance, so he requested the registration again, which she gave him)
O: Thank you. This is for your Subaru car.
R: This is my Subaru car.
O: Is this a station wagon, color green? The plate doesn’t match what’s on there.
R: [Inaudible]…I thought that was my [inaudible]
O: I’ll run the plate and see what it comes back with.
R: This is the [inaudible] that I have.
(Officer returns to his car for three minutes to write out the ticket for failure to drive in the established lane)
O: Ma’am. So I wrote you the infraction for that improper lane change that you did.
R: Please, you know, I probably crossed over there, and that’s why I did it.
R: Obviously I did that.
R: My [inaudible] is absolutely clean.
O: Ok. So I wrote you an infraction for that improper lane change that you did.
O: The answer date is on the front of it and the instructions are on the back of it.
R: Wait, what?
O: It’s a mail in infraction. All you have to do is mail in, either a check or money order, and mail it in.
R: Thank you.
The Connecticut State Police Union called for a public apology from Roychoudhuri.
“As Connecticut State Troopers, we take great pride in our duties and are willing to sacrifice our lives to protect the rights and lives of others,” the union’s president, Andrew Matthews, said in a statement. “We understand we are vulnerable to physical and verbal attacks from the criminal element and others in our society whose sole purpose is to disrupt law enforcement. However, we do not tolerate actions of a professor, from a well-respected college, whose motivation is to tarnish the reputation and career of a State Trooper by making false accusations of racial discrimination.”
Matthews sent a letter to the president of the community college where Roychoudhuri works asking that she be “held accountable for her illegal and malicious actions.”
Haha. YES! Unlike her accusations, these are actually true. What sweeter justice than exactly what she tried to do to an innocent trooper, soiling his name and dragging him through an IA investigation? No one needs that on their record. This lady deserves everything she gets, and though the private sector is much less stringent than the police force, I hope the college president takes her to task on this.
IF it was true he pulled her over based on race, then yes, she had every right to do exactly what she did. She should write a letter. She should be aggressive and demand an apology. I support the rights of others to be able to live free of racial bias and racial profiling. Cases like these, where there is nothing more than a cheapskate behind the wheel that apparently is unaware of traffic laws at gore points, is ridiculous.
Racism is a big deal to be accused of. Not all incidents are unfounded, but getting a traffic ticket you don’t want to pay after performing an illegal action isn’t something that actually constitutes racism. As a professor of English, perhaps she should know THAT.
Written by Katie McGuire. Send your hate mail to the author at firstname.lastname@example.org, or feel free to mean tweet me at @GopKatie, where I will be sure to do very little about it.