A transgender man has launched a lawsuit against a New Jersey police force after an off-duty officer forced him to pull his pants down for inspection.
The off-duty officer forced the man to pull down his pants so that he could inspect after he was convinced that his prosthetic penis was stolen merchandise from a store.
The trans man, who has remained anonymous in the suit, felt “humiliated, intimidated and abused”.
The incident took place in a grocery store in Paterson, New Jersey earlier this year on May 12.
The police officer was allegedly working security and did have a sheriffs uniform on.
The officer approached the trans man and accused him of shoplifting.
He tried to explain that he was wearing a prosthetic penis, at which point the officer said that he would need to be inspected.
The officer then had a female cashier inspect him in a store restroom.
After realising his mistake, the officer reportedly apologised.
The victim’s attorney confirmed that they believe the officer made a genuine mistake in thinking the prosthetic penis was stolen merchandise.
However, they are suing over false imprisonment and discrimination.
Reports of the incident, specifically from the Daily Mail, have misgendered the man despite understanding his trans identity.
It is not the first time the Daily Mail has fallen down in reporting on trans issues.
They also called her “a father,” and implied that her actions were because she was pre-op.