What Next

How the NYPD Gets Away With It

What happened after an unmarked patrol car rammed into a black teenager in Brooklyn.


Episode Notes

It was Halloween night when Eric Umansky’s wife asked him to go see what was happening around the corner from their home. She had just seen an unmarked NYPD patrol car strike a black teenager, and officers had pinned another group of black kids against the wall of the local theater. Eric arrived on the scene just as three of those kids were being arrested—ages 15, 14, and 12.

Eric didn’t intend to step out of his home and into a monthslong reporting project, but that’s precisely what happened as he began to investigate what happened that Halloween night in Brooklyn. The story he surfaced puts in stark display the system that protesters all over the country are rallying to fix.

Guest: Eric Umansky, deputy managing editor at ProPublica.

Slate Plus members get bonus segments and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now.

Podcast production by Mary Wilson, Jayson De Leon, and Danielle Hewitt.


About the Show

The problem with the news right now? It’s everywhere. And each day, it can feel like we’re all just mindlessly scrolling. It’s why we created What Next. This short daily show is here to help you make sense of things. When the news feels overwhelming, we’re here to help you answer: What next? Look for new episodes every weekday morning.

All episodes


  • Mary Harris is the host and managing editor of What Next, Slate's new daily news podcast. She has reported throughout the public radio system, for NPR, Marketplace, and WNYC.