Fake ‘Off-Duty Trooper’ Guilty Of Hate Crime in Hudson Valley, NY
A man who lied about being an "off-duty" New York State trooper pleaded guilty to committing a hate crime against a Hudson Valley pastor and police Lieutenant.
On Thursday in Orange County Court, 61-year-old William Ryan of Newburgh pleaded guilty to menacing in the second degree as a hate crime and criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree.
"Off-Duty" New York State Police Trooper Screams Racist Slurs At Newburgh, New York Pastor
In June, Pastor RD McLymore, a Newburgh pastor, said a man in a red truck called him a racial slur because the pastor allowed a car to go in front of him.
The man in the truck is heard on the video identifying himself as an "off-duty trooper." In the video, he screams out multiple racial slurs at the pastor and screams "you will never be white."
A New York State Police spokesperson confirmed to Hudson Valley Post that the man in the video is not a police officer. Local officials later also confirmed the man in the truck is not an "off-duty (New York State Police) trooper" as he claimed to be.
However, Pastor McLymore is a police officer in Orange County. He's a Town of Wallkill Police Lieutenant.
Racist Incident At Newburgh Chinses Restaurant Under Investigation
The incident happened on June 11 in the parking lot of a Chinese restaurant near Broadway and Fullerton Avenue in Newburgh. The pastor said a man in a red truck, later identified as Ryan, screamed racist slurs because the pastor allowed a car to go in front of him on Broadway.
McLymore also accused the man of threatening him with a knife.
"He pulled out a knife and threatened us. Then he went to Broadway Liquor and did the same thing to a Spanish couple. This is the world we live in," McLymore wrote in the video he shared.
Town of Newburgh, New York Man Arrested
A few days after the video went viral, City of Newburgh police identified the man as Ryan and arrested him.
During the plea proceedings, Ryan admitted that he unlawfully possessed a knife that he used to place or attempt to place the Lieutenant in reasonable fear of physical injury, serious physical injury or death. He further admitted that he was motivated, in whole or in part, to commit the offenses against the Lieutenant based on a belief or perception about his race. He apologized for his actions.
"Hate has no place in our community,” Orange County District Attorney David M. Hoovler said. “This defendant’s reprehensible conduct is particularly troubling because of the hatred that motivated it. While thankfully no one was hurt during this violent episode, it is nevertheless a reminder that we must be diligent in addressing such conduct. I hope that not only does this defendant learn the consequences of his actions, but that the case stands as a warning to others that hate crimes will not be tolerated.”
Under the plea agreement announced on the record at the time that Ryan pleaded guilty, the District Attorney’s Office will recommend that he serve a split sentence of six months incarceration and five years of probation as well as 500 hours of community service when he is sentenced in November.
Video of the incident, provided to Hudson Valley Post by Rep. Maloney, that's been deemed racist can be seen by CLICKING HERE. Warning: the video contains racial slurs and curses that many will find offensive.