You Be The Judge: Is This Police Brutality? - KMSP-TV

You Be The Judge: Is This Police Brutality?

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West New York, New Jersey (My9NJ) -

Video has recently surface from June 28, 2014, of Steven Betancourt, who happens to be the son of West New York, New Jersey mayoral candidate Carlos “Chucky” Betancourt, allegedly being beaten and tackled to the ground by local police. However, the young Betancourt claims he doesn’t know why he was cuffed in the first place. He says at the time of the incident his friend’s car was being towed, and all he did was tell the officer his dad is Chucky Betancourt. Chucky is not only running for mayor, but he’s also a former cop who served for decades at the local police department.

Betancourt’s lawyer, Mario Blanche calls this incident a use of excessive force and simply a vicious attack by police.

“Steven was hit from behind from what appears to be a baton by one of the officers. That causes Steven to fall backwards. At that point some of the officers are grabbing Steven by the head, pushing him towards the ground, pulling his hair,” he said.

Blanche actually pulls up a still from the video where if you look closely you can see an officer hitting Steven with a baton, causing his client to react. However it was Steven Betancourt who was originally charged with felony assault and hindering arrest. His lawyer says those charges have since been downgraded to a disorderly person’s offense. Now Blanche says he’s considering a civil suit against the police department for violating Betancourt’s rights.

If you watch the video you can also see and hear Betancourt’s friends protesting the acts of the cops saying “he’s not resisting” and “why would you do this”.

Betancourt is a professional model and actor. He says he grew up respecting West New York cops like his dad, but now he says he’s disgusted by the actions of the police department.

“I see the officers now and I’m traumatized now,” he said.

The older Betancourt could not be reached for comment, but West New York town spokesman Pablo Fonseca says that authorities are not commenting on the situation at this time and that the arrest is currently under investigation by internal affairs.

 

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