Police brutality is a concern for anybody who wants a just, civil society. Officers do need to use force sometimes, but when they needlessly beat or injure a suspect, they violate their duty to protect the public.
Two Nassau County police officers are facing accusations of abuse from a man they pulled over on a traffic stop recently. The suspect has been charged with drug possession, but he denies trying to resist arrest or destroy evidence, as the accused officers claim.
The defendant suffered a broken nose and injuries to his eye and facial nerves in the incident. He is filing a lawsuit against the police officers he says attacked him needlessly.
The officers pulled him over on April 25 for allegedly having a cracked windshield. According to the officers, they began punching and kneeing the defendant after he tried to eat a bag of marijuana that was in his car.
The defendant denies this, and says he was trying to keep his paycheck from flying out the door. As he recalls, he grabbed for it, and one of the officers kneed him in the face, knocking him unconscious. He awoke in the hospital, arrested on suspicion of misdemeanor drug possession, evidence tampering and assault.
A surveillance camera captured the beating. It could prove to be important evidence against the officers in the defendant’s lawsuit. For example, the officers claim that the defendant attacked them first. The footage could prove or disprove that contention. WABC-TV does not mention if there was a dashboard camera in the officers’ vehicle.
Source: WABC-TV, “Long Island officers caught on video violently striking driver,” May 6, 2014