City Pays $55K to Settle “Robocop” School Safety Agent Abuse Case


The city has agreed yesterday to pay $55,000 to settle a suit brought by the family of Stephen Cruz, which charged a school safety agent had kicked a bathroom door in on Cruz, cut his head, told him, “That’s life, it will stop bleeding,” and split. Cruz, a senior at Robert F. Kennedy High School in Queens, was in the stall one September schoolday when agent Daniel O’Connell, known to the students as “Robocop,” allegedly did the kick-in. Cruz’ father got the runaround from authorities when he remonstrated, so he sued the agent, the city, Ray Kelly, Joel Klein, and the NYPD’s 107th Precinct supervisor for constitutional violations and supervisory liability, in which Cruz was joined by the New York Civil Liberties Union. Defendants will also pay $19,000 in legal fees.