Manhattan DA clears officers accused of brutality during OWS protests
Two high-ranking police officers accused of brutality against Occupy Wall Street protesters will not be prosecuted, the Manhattan DA’s office announced Friday.
Video footage showed Deputy Inspectors Anthony Bologna and Johnny Cardona pepper-spraying and punching crowds during OWS protests in Fall 2011.
“The District Attorney’s Office has concluded, after a thorough investigation, that we cannot prove these allegations criminally beyond a reasonable doubt," Erin M. Duggan, chief spokeswoman for DA Cy Vance said.
Roy Richter, President of the Captains Endowment Association supported the decision, claiming that Bologna “did nothing that rises to the level of criminal conduct.”
Richter also called Cardona — who needed hip- and knee-replacement surgeries following the protests — “a true victim of the [Occupy Wall Street] fiasco.”
But the injured protestors and their representatives still attest the officers’ guilt.
"Despite the overwhelming proof on videotape, seen around the world, Cy Vance Jr. has shown that he will do nothing to disturb his cozy relationship with the police, even in the face of the clearest wrongdoing," Ron Kuby, a civil rights attorney, said in a statement.
Kuby represents Kaylee Dedrick, a teacher’s aide hit by Bologna’s pepper spray, and Felix Rivera-Pitre, a protestor punched in the face by Cardona.
Following the incidents, Bologna was docked 10 vacation days and reassigned to Staten Island. NYPD cleared Cardona completely.