Two Buffalo Police Officers Charged with Assault Over Allegedly Shoving 75-Year-Old Man

June 06, 2020 - 11:32 am

    BUFFALO, N.Y. (WBEN) — Two Buffalo police officers were charged with assault Saturday, prosecutors said, after a video showed them shoving a 75-year-old protester in recent demonstrations over the death of George Floyd in Minnesota.

    Both pleaded not guilty to second-degree assault. They were released without bail.

    As the officers left the courthouse, cheers erupted outside where police and fire union members had gathered in a mass to support the two officers.

    The officers had been suspended without pay Friday after a TV crew captured the confrontation the night before near the end of protests.

    Following the arraignments, the Erie County District Attorney told reporters, "I'm not on anyone's side," noting he is also prosecuting several demonstrators.

    "They're not trained to shove a 75-year old man," said flynn of the Buffalo Police officers.

    The footage shows a man identified as Martin Gugino approaching a line of helmeted officers holding batons as they clear demonstrators from Niagara Square around the time of an 8 p.m. curfew.

    Two officers push Gugino backward, and he hits his head on the pavement. Blood spills as officers walk past. One officer leans down to check on the injured man before another officer urges the colleague to keep walking.

    The 75-year-old was hospitalized for a head injury at Erie County Medical Center, lost consciousness and remains in critical condition, according to the Erie County DA.

    Dozens of police officers stepped down from the department’s crowd control unit Friday, in response to their fellow officers' suspensions.

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