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Fifteen minutes after Crudup declined to plead guilty, prosecutors dropped his gun charges.
Crudup is one of four plaintiffs in an ongoing class action civil rights lawsuit that attorneys Patel and Michael Bruckheim filed in federal court against the D.C. Government. The lawsuit alleges that the GRU—which focuses on the interdiction and recovery of illegal weapons and the apprehension of people involved in illegal gun crime—has a policy of stopping, frisking, and searching Black people without reasonable suspicion or probable cause, and that they fabricate information to justify the stops, frisks, and searches. According to the lawsuit, despite D.C. Having some of the strictest gun control measures in the country, the GRU has a “practice and custom of treating African American people as though they all carry illegal handguns.”
The lawsuit says the GRU officers use a person’s presence in a “high crime” neighborhood as a reason to approach them and often cite a person shielding themselves from officers jumping out of an unmarked car or running as further justification for a stop. When GRU officers ask if they can search someone, they often characterize how that person responds to the question as “suspicious” in order to justify a search, even if the person did not consent.
In November, attorneys for the city government wrote in a motion filed with the court that the “plaintiffs’ claims have no merit and should be dismissed” in part because “the officers had reasonable suspicion to support the stops and searches.” They said that none of the plaintiffs disputed that they were in possession of a firearm without a license and also denied that the GRU has a policy of engaging in unconstitutional stops and searches.