Disability rights advocate says state senator with violent history shoved him at New York Capitol

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A disability rights advocate has filed a complaint with New York State Police saying he was shoved twice at the state Capitol by state Sen. Kevin Parker, a Brooklyn Democrat with a history of violent behavior.

Michael Curry said his confrontation with Parker occurred on Wednesday after he approached the senator before the committee meeting and asked him to co-sponsor part of the legislation. Carey said Parker lost his temper after the attorney described the legislation as addressing the “Dr. Martin Luther King case” regarding discrimination against people with disabilities.

Curry said the senator moved inches away from his face and shouted, “I don’t care.”

Curry, who became an advocate after his son Jonathan died while in state care, said he responded, “You don’t care that my son died?”

He said Parker grabbed him by the shoulders and pushed him, causing him to stumble backwards. Carey said Parker pushed him again.

“I was shocked. I couldn’t believe what happened,” Curry told The Associated Press.

Parker opened the committee meeting after the incident by joking that he hoped it would be “as exciting as before the game.”

His office did not respond to requests for comment.

New York State Police said Wednesday that they responded to a “disturbance,” but did not elaborate.

The office of Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins ​​did not respond to questions about the incident.

Parker has a history of physical altercations.

In 2005, he was arrested for third-degree assault after he was accused of striking a traffic officer who had given him a double parking ticket. In the same year, his permit to enter government buildings was temporarily suspended due to his violation of security regulations. Two former aides complained that Parker physically assaulted them in separate incidents. One of them said he pushed her and smashed her glasses in the campaign office. Parker was not charged in either incident.

In 2009, Parker was arrested again after he stalked a New York Post photographer and damaged his camera. He was eventually convicted of misdemeanor criminal mischief charges. The Senate Majority Leader at the time, Malcolm Smith, stripped Parker of his position as majority whip.

Last year, it was Parker Accused In a case of rape of a woman at the beginning of his legislative career. The lawsuit is still pending. Parker called the rape accusations “completely untrue.”

Curry said he wanted Parker to support legislation that would require employees at government and private facilities to report incidents of abuse or neglect of vulnerable people to a 911 operator.


Maysoon Khan is a corps member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America It is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to report on undercovered issues.

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