Aug. 4, 2012, may be a day that one New York City police officer wishes he could go back and do over. On that day, the officer arrested a photographer from the New York Times for taking pictures during the arrest of a teenager that was believed to have been involved in a fight. The officer is now facing felony charges in connection with his arrest of that photographer.
The officer had accused the photographer of using his flash and distracting officers during what could undoubtedly have been a dangerous situation. The officer also claimed that the photographer hit him with his camera. A judge and internal affairs officers with the New York Police Department say that the officer was lying. Evidence was presented to the judge that indicated the photographer had not used his flash at all during the incident.
The photographer claims that the officer came up to him suddenly and pushed the camera into the photographer's face. He further stated that the officer pushed him, kicked him and then handcuffed him. The officer also confiscated the photographer's camera equipment. The photographer did admit, however, that he may have hit the officer with his camera, but claims it would have been an accident.
The officer is now facing both misdemeanor and felony charges in connection with the incident. The charges range from tampering with evidence to official misconduct. If convicted of all of the charges against him, the officer could end up serving at least seven years in a state prison. Based on the investigations into this incident and the resulting court appearance, the charges against the photographer have been dropped. It may be in the officer's best interest to review the evidence and prepare a strong defense.
Source: rt.com, NYPD officer charged with multiple felonies for unlawful arrest of New York Times photographer, No author, Aug. 27, 2013