04/10/2013 11:25 am ET Updated Apr 10, 2013

Justin Johnsen, Brooklyn Cyclist, Received $1,200 Bill For Damage To NYPD Car That Hit Him

With a massive budget of around $4.6 billion, you'd think the NYPD would pay to repair a little damage to one of its cop cars, especially when said cop car was damaged only after slamming into a cyclist and leaving him with stitches.

You'd think.

The New York Post reports, however, that Justin Johnsen, a 31-year-old cyclist from Brooklyn, was billed $1,263.01 for a November accident in which a police car struck him.

Johnsen says he was following traffic rules before the accident, riding in the bike lane and signaling to make a left turn, when the unmarked police car suddenly hit him.

"I think it’s preposterous," Johnsen said. "I was upset. I was in kind of disbelief that they were going to send this letter after four months or so and ask me to pay damages for their vehicle, when they hit me when I was on a bicycle."

When The Post made inquiries to the city about the incident, the city abruptly canceled the bill.

And this isn't the first time the city is accused of sending bills to car accident victims who weren't necessarily at fault.

In October, city officials were forced to apologize after the city sent a collection letter to the mother of Tamon Robinson. Tamon was fatally hit by a police car in Brooklyn.

Earlier in 2012, a 25-year-old pedestrian, Jesse Zorski, was billed $1,028.08 after he was struck by a patrol car.

The department eventually acknowledged the bill should have never been sent, but Jesse Zorski's family has since filed a lawsuit to cover his hospital fees.



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