Brooklyn man arrested after cops mistake breath mints for ecstasy: lawsuit

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BROOKLYN, N.Y. (PIX11) — A Brooklyn man was arrested and spent 30 hours in custody after cops thought his bag of breath mints were ecstasy tablets, according to a new lawsuit.

Robert Hankins was arrested outside his Bed-Stuy home on April 2 after a nurse with “professional training” in identifying MDMA, better known as ecstasy, pointed Hankins out to cops.

Hankins said he was arrested despite pleading with cops to take a whiff of the mints to prove it wasn’t the club drug.

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Hankins said he was arrested even after telling calls to smell the mints to prove it wasn’t the club drug, ecstasy. (Stock photo)

He was taken to the 79th precinct, then transferred to Brooklyn Central Booking, all the while trying to convince police the “drugs” were only mints.

Hankins was eventually released by the judge before his arraignment, after spending an estimated 30 hours in custody.

Charges against Hankins were only dropped on Oct. 3, a little over six months later.

Hankins, with his attorney Gabriel Harvis, has filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the NYPD and the nurse who indicted him for false arrest, unlawful stop and search, malicious prosecution, and denial of constitutional rights.


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