Alleged Police Beating Caught on Tape; Officers Suspended

 

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Some say video of alleged Philadelphia police beating does not support police officers’ account of what happened.

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The Saturday night shooting at Monroeville Mall wounded three people, two Two Philadelphia police officers have been suspended and face criminal charges after allegedly beating a man bloody when surveillance video uncovered by the victim’s girlfriend contradicted their account.

Officers Sean McKnight and Kevin Robinson turned themselves in Thursday and were charged with aggravated assault, simple assault, conspiracy and other offenses related to a May 29, 2013 assault when a traffic stop turned violent, District Attorney Seth Williams announced.

“This type of behavior has absolutely no place in our city, and I will prosecute these two officers to the fullest extent of the law,” Williams said in a press briefing.

The officers pulled over 23-year-old Najee Rivera for reportedly running a stop sign, but he fled on his scooter — frightened — when McKnight and Robinson got out of their patrol car with batons in hand, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

The arrest report claims the officers located Rivera several blocks away after he lost control of his scooter and fell. Rivera then allegedly threw Robinson into a brick wall and tried to grab McKnight’s baton.

But video from a nearby store — obtained by Rivera’s girlfriend, Dina Scannapieco, and submitted to authorities one month later — showed McKnight and Robinson knocked Rivera off his bike, then pummeled him with their fists and batons.

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Rivera suffered an orbital bone fracture, his right eye was swollen shut and he needed several stitches to close multiple open wounds.

“You seen all his blood all over the pavement,” Scannapieco told The Inquirer.

Charges against Rivera were dropped and an investigation was launched against the arresting officers.

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