Two Buffalo, New York, police officers are now facing criminal charges in connection with the graphic caught-on-video shove of a 75-year-old man during a protest, a law enforcement source told ABC News.
Charges against the officer will not be unsealed until after their arraignment on Saturday, according to the law enforcement source.
The Thursday protest at Niagara Square had less than 20 demonstrators and several members of Buffalo Police Department’s Emergency Response Team, officials said. […]
The man fell flat onto his back and bumped the back of his head on the concrete, video shows. The sound of the man’s head hitting the ground silenced the crowd, according to the video.
A trail of blood can be seen seeping from the head of the motionless man as several officers walked by him.
Why this is a particularly egregious situation, is that when the man fell, an officer went to aid him and another officer stopped him from aiding the man on the sidewalk. That’s when this got very ugly. Knocking the man to the ground was bad enough, but then letting him lie there and bleed and doing nothing escalated the inhumanity of the situation.
In a related development, it turns out that some of the 57 officers who immediately resigned in the wake of this incident, ostensibly in a show of solidarity, did not resign for that reason at all. They did so because they weren’t going to be backed legally anymore for their actions. WKBW TV :
“I don’t understand why the union said it’s a thing of solidarity. I think it sends the wrong message that ‘we’re backing our own’ and that’s not the case,” said one officer with whom we spoke.
“We quit because our union said [they] aren’t legally backing us anymore. So why would we stand on a line for the City with no legal backing if something [were to] happen? Has nothing to do with us supporting,” said another.
A representative from the Buffalo Police Benevolent Association told 7 Eyewitness News Reporter Hannah Buehler the officers resigned in “disgust” with how the two officers were treated.
“Some of them probably resigned because they support the officer,” said another officer with whom we spoke. “But, for many of us, that’s not true.”
“The City, DA Flynn, they’re not representing those guys at all. They have to find their own lawyers, they have to come out of pocket.”
This makes a lot more sense than the first story. The first story conveyed a sense of almost ruthlessness, that was a little hard to believe, “if you discipline one of us, we’ll all quit, because we’re with the guy that shoved the old man.” That was hard to stomach. This alternate explanation makes perfect sense, however.
The times, they are a changin.’ And high freaking time, I might add.