Dashboard camera evidence from a police cruiser was recently used to clear a Bloomfield NJ man of assault charges.
The arrest occurred in June 2012 after Bloomfield police officers pulled over the 30-year-old man’s vehicle on the Garden State Parkway. The officers had alleged that the man attempted to flee police and that he physically attacked one of the officers. The man was later charged with aggravated assault, eluding police, and resisting arrest.
In preparation for trial, the man’s defense attorney had requested discovery evidence from the prosecution. This was supposed to include all recorded evidence. However, the Bloomfield Police Department initially failed to provide the tape from a second police car which was at the scene.
When evidence of the second police car surfaced, Bloomfield police finally turned over the second tape from the vehicle dashboard video. According to authorities, this tape showed the man fully complying with officers at the scene. Additionally, the tape reportedly showed one of the officers punching the man in the head several times.
As a result of the new evidence, prosecutors in the case dismissed all of the criminal charges against the man.
Moreover, the new evidence prompted prosecutors to file criminal charges against the arresting officers.
Three Bloomfield police officers have now been charged in the case. One officer has already pleaded guilty to tampering with evidence, while two other officers have been indicted for official misconduct, conspiracy, tampering with records, and false swearing. One of the officers also faces aggravated assault charges for allegedly beating the man during the traffic stop.
While the criminal case is pending, the man is pursuing a civil lawsuit against the arresting officers and the Bloomfield Police Department. He has also alleged that he was a victim of racial profiling.
For more information, access the RawStory.com article entitled “New Jersey Man Escapes 5 Year Sentence After Dash Cam Footage Clears Him, Indicts Cops.”