A Jewish New York Police Department officer who was forced to quit his job — after a request for a transfer to another department was denied by his superiors – released recordings of the relentless antisemitic abuse he suffered from fellow officers, ABC News show “The Investigators” reported this week.
David Attali, a six-year veteran of the NYPD with the World Trade Center Command, told ABC that the slurs he received began to escalate from jokes about Jews to constant references to the “good job” Hitler did.
Attali, originally from Israel, said he initially tried to ignore the incessant barbs, many of which were voiced in front of supervisors.
“Certain officers will come in, regardless of who is standing there, sergeant, lieutenant, not referring to me as David,” but rather “dirty Jew.”
Another commonplace greeting Attali recounted he would receive was, “I should throw you in an oven.”
When Attali’s request to be transferred to another command was denied, he decided to begin recording his fellow officers.
This week, Attali went public with the tapes for the first time on “The Investigators,” whose anchor called them “hard to listen to.”
The following are examples of the kind of comments to which he was subjected on a daily basis:
Police officer (in fake German accent): “Do you want to go to this camp for the summer?”
Police officer: “Oh, you will lose so much weight, you’ll be in the best shape of your life.”
Attali: “How so?”
Police officer: “It’s a concentration camp.”
Police officer: “Think about it. Where do Jews with ADD get sent?”
Police officer: “Concentration camps.”
“You smell like (expletive) and fish,” one officer told him. “You smell like Gefilte (expletive).”
Officer No. 1: “I hate that haircut.”
Attali: “Want me to shave my head?”
Officer No. 1: “I want to push you into an oven and (expletive) burn.”
Officer No. 2: “I want to tattoo a number on you.”
Officer No. 3: “DKS7741, step up, breathe in this tube. And, oh wait, he died, surprise, surprise.”
Attali said that his locker was also a target, with antisemitic slogans and photos – such as a supermarket ad for pork — being plastered in it by coworkers.
He eventually filed a complaint with the NYPD Office of Equal Employment, which concluded that though his locker had been vandalized, his allegations of verbal harassment were unsubstantiated.
“It was too much for me,” Attali said, bemoaning how his dream job had turned into his worst nightmare. “That’s it, I’m done. I’m out… I really had no option.”
Since quitting the force, Attali has filed a discrimination lawsuit against the NYPD and nine officers. His lawyer, Rocco Avallone, told ABC that his client “had to quit. He was what we call constructively discharged. They basically forced him to quit once the transfer got denied.”
The NYPD says it is conducting an internal investigation into this case, and disciplinary charges have been filed against three officers.