Two New York Police Department officers were fired after a judge found them guilty of sexually abusing and raping a teen.

In the ruling made public last week, former officers Sanad Musallam, 34, and Yaser Shohatee, 41, were fired from the police department in March after an internal disciplinary trial found the officers engaged in a months-long relationship with a then 15-year-old from 2015 to 2016, The Washington Post reported

The teen’s mother met Musallam while he was responding to her 911 call after she suspected that her daughter had run away. When the minor returned home, her mother was concerned with her daughter’s wellbeing and asked Musallam to mentor her.


Musallam enrolled the teen in the New York Police Department Explorers, a program for youth aged 14 to 20 years old. The program strives to keep youth out of trouble and introduce them to a career as a police officer, the New York Post reported

From 2015 to 2016, the officers exchanged hundreds of text messages with the minor and Musallam asked her to send him an explicit photo of herself. He then asked her to perform sexual acts on him while in his car. 

The teen said on several occasions, Shohatee asked her to visit his apartment late at night, where NYPD Assistant Deputy Commissioner Paul Gamble, who acted as a judge in the trial, said the officer raped her at least twice.

Once the teen informed her mom of what had taken place, the mother filed a complaint with the NYPD’s office of internal affairs. Shortly after, Musallam and Shohatee were both placed on modified duty in June 2018.

In March 2021, Gamble determined that both officers raped the minor and needed to be terminated, USA Today reported.

“The insidious and sinister nature of his repeated actions would cause any responsible adult, let alone a parent, to recoil in horror,” Gamble said. 

Prior to being terminated, both officers maintained their innocence and received their full pay.

However, Gamble rejected the officers' sentiments that they didn’t engage in misconduct with a minor, and in his 41-page report, he recommended that the officers face termination.

“[The officers] targeted the minor as a particularly vulnerable individual they were morally obliged to protect but chose to take advantage of to satisfy their depraved interests,” Gamble said. 

Neither of the officers have been charged criminally and investigators say the case has fallen apart because the minor stopped cooperating.