After 16-year-old Kimani Gray was fatally shot seven times by police, his hands were restrained behind his back in pink handcuffs.
It was apparently a well-known fact that Police Officer John Hoder carried the differently colored handcuffs, so when officers were asked who restrained Gray, they were able to identify him because of the cuffs used.
“I don’t know if he used pink cuffs to demean (someone under arrest) or if it’s something allowed by the police for some other reason,” said lawyer Richard Cardinale, who is representing Gray’s mother in a lawsuit against Hoder on charges of force and illegal handcuffing.
While NYPD officers are required to carry “standard issue handcuffs,” an exception can be made during Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, when “the enforcement of this regulation is overlooked, providing that the pink handcuffs meet or exceed” the department’s minimum standards.
Additionally, and NYPD source said that the color of the handcuffs used does not matter as long as they meet regulations.
“They get unusual colored cuffs because they are easy to identify,” the source said. “There are lots of pink cuffs out there.”
Gray was shot by Sgt. Mourad Mourad and Officer Jovaniel Cordova after they say he pointed a gun at them, and when Hoder arrived on the scene, Cordova ordered him to restrain the teen, who was lying on the sidewalk and bleeding.