Exclusive video surveillance of an incident involving the arrest of a Bronx teen back in January has at least two former members of the force agreeing with a growing number of calls for the DA to press charges against officers involved. NY1′s Dean Meminger filed the following report.
How did 19-year-old Jateik Reed end up bloody and handcuffed on a Bronx street? His lawyer says it was a classic case of illegal Stop-and-Frisk gone terribly wrong.
“Even if you don’t have 20/20 vision. Even if you have some substantial clarity, you can see quite clear there was nothing, there were no bags in Jateik Reed’s hands,” said Reed’s attorney, Michael Warren.
Officers swore they witnessed bags of crack and marijuana being carried by Reed. In the criminal complaint one officer is quoted as saying, “He observed the defendant to have on his person, in his hand, one (1) clear plastic bag containing a white, rock-like substance, which he threw to the ground. In his hand, two (2) clear plastic bags, each containing a dried green leafy substance with a distinctive odor, in public view.”
Surveillance video from a nearby building shows Reed walking with his hands out, no drugs in view. John Eterno, a retired New York City Police Department captain, says it appears Reed shouldn’t have been stopped.
“The officers would have to only go in their pockets if they had reasonable suspicion, if there was a weapon in there. And given what I’ve seen on the film I’m not sure they had that reasonable suspicion,” Eterno said.
The Bronx district attorney later dropped the charges. As for the claims of hitting and kicking by police, the same criminal complaint said, “The defendant flailed his arms, refusing to be handcuffed at which time the defendant struck informant (the officer) in his nose with a closed fist.”
It does appear Reed tried to get away. But on the video he does not throw a punch. Still, after the melee starts, an officer appears to be checking his nose. Also in the exclusive surveillance video, a female officer walks over and kicks Reed while he’s handcuffed.
Reeds lawyer wants the Bronx DA to charge the officers with assault and filing a false report — something Colleen Meenan, a former NYPD sergeant and lawyer, agrees with.
“They were looking to protect themselves for assaulting this young man, appearing to brutalize him. And so there was an effort to me to cover up what happened,” Meenan said.
The officers involved in the arrest remain on modified duty during the NYPD investigation.
The DA says Jateik Reed won’t speak with them about pressing charges.
His lawyer says the video speaks for itself.