“Either you buy these or I take your car. ‘Cause it’s unregistered.”
On Thursday, a video posted to Facebook showed Philadelphia police officer Matthew Zagursky threatening to take a man’s car unless he bought tickets to “Philadelphia’s Hero Thrill Show,” a police fundraiser to raise money for the children of Philadelphia police officers and firefighters killed on the job.
On Friday, Zagursky was reassigned to desk duty and stripped of his service weapon.
In the video that some have mistaken for a staged prank due to its blatant illegality, Zagursky offers the driver a choice of buying tickets to the police fundraiser or having his car impounded.
“You and your friend got any money to buy these Thrill Show tickets? Ten bucks each, man,” Zagursky says. “Either you buy these or I take your car. ‘Cause it’s unregistered. Ten bucks each man. Support your police department man….Support cops like me, instead of taking your shit.”
As the driver holds up cash in the video to buy the tickets, Zagursky insults his pink windshield wipers in a second video.
“And what’s up with the faggot ass wipers?” asks Zagursky.
“Breast cancer, man -my grandma went through it,” the driver answered.
“Breast cancer I can understand, can’t you support breast cancer in another way, you look like a fruitcake, you know what the hell.”
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey reassigned the nine-year veteran Zagursky to desk duty after seeing the videos on Friday morning. “Nothing he did was right,” the chief said, adding that he plans to refer the case to prosecutors. “That’s totally inappropriate, and it could very well be illegal,” Ramsey said.
Philadelphia police made the news recently in another shakedown, after six city narcotics officers were indicted for using beatings and threats to steal money from local drug dealers.