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Miami-Dade police officer charged over rough take-down of woman caught on video

Miami-Dade police officer charged over rough take-down of woman caught on video

Postby smix » Sat May 04, 2019 7:11 am

Miami-Dade police officer charged over rough take-down of woman caught on video
Miami Herald

URL: https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/ ... 91254.html
Category: Police
Published: May 3, 2019

Description: Miami-Dade Police Officer Alejandro Giraldo caused community outrage when, as video cameras rolled, he angrily tackled, then arrested a woman who had called police to report she’d been threatened by a neighbor with a shotgun. But Giraldo’s most serious crime, prosecutors said, was that he lied when he wrote an arrest report claiming the woman was disobeying commands and causing a scene. The Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office on Friday announced that it had filed a third-degree felony official misconduct charge against Giraldo, who had already been relieved of duty for the March incident. For the rough take-down, Giraldo was also charged with misdemeanor battery during the arrest of Dyma Loving. “We believe that there is sufficient evidence to charge a violation of Florida’s criminal statutes,” the office said in a statement. Giraldo’s defense attorney, Andre Rouviere, said he’s concerned prosecutors might have been pressured by activists into filing charges. “I’m a little concerned of the nature and the way the case was brought about,” Rouviere said. The arrest of Giraldo was the latest in a string of criminal cases brought against officers depicted in videos using forceful tactics against primarily African Americans. The cases have come against the backdrop of an ongoing national debate over police use of force and friction between law enforcement and communities of color. Awaiting trial in unrelated cases: Miami-Dade Sgt. Manuel Regueiro, accused of slapping a handcuffed suspect, and Miami-Dade Officer Gustavo de los Rios, accused of kicking a handcuffed teen suspect. But so far, the State Attorney’s Office hasn’t secured any convictions. Another cop, Miami Officer Mario Figueroa, was accused of kicking at a handcuffed suspect — but a judge last month acquitted him at trial. In Broward County, two deputies have been relieved of duty after they were accused of using excessive force in arresting a teenager during a widely publicized scrum outside a McDonald’s near Taravella High. The Giraldo case was another hot-button confrontation that touched a nerve among Miami’s African-American community and activists who have ripped law-enforcement tactics. Loving’s attorneys announced a lawsuit against Giraldo and Miami-Dade County in an emotional press conference last month. Spurred by the video, members of several activist groups, including The Color of Change and UltraViolet, marched into the state attorney’s office on Apr. 23 to hand over two petitions and more than 50,000 signatures demanding Giraldo’s arrest. “While we do celebrate this as a victory, we are mindful that this fight for accountability should never have been needed in the first place,” Clarise McCants, the Color of Change’s Criminal Justice Campaign Director, said in a statement. “Ms. Loving is one of countless Black women who are subject to unacceptable police harassment and violence on a regular basis.” Loving’s attorney, Justin Moore, called the charges against Giraldo “a start.” He said he believes other cops involved in the episode should also face criminal charges. “The fact is that other officers involved in Dyma’s arrest assisted Officer Giraldo and drafted police reports detailing the incident. It is more than reasonable that they meet the same scrutiny that officer Giraldo has received,” Moore said. Miami-Dade Police Director Juan Perez said in a statement that the arrest of Giraldo was “disappointing and overshadows the hard work of the dedicated men and women of law enforcement who strive daily to serve and protect our community.” The dust-up between Giraldo and Loving unfolded on March 5 in the neighborhood of South Miami Heights. That morning, Loving was walking with her friend, Adrianna Green, past the home of a 50-year-old white man named Frank Tumm. Tumm long had friction with the Green family. According to police, Tumm yelled out racial slurs and called Green a “hooker” and other names. Then, Tumm pulled out a shotgun and pointed it at the women, according to police. The two women called 911. The first two officers who arrived told investigators that the women were upset but calm as they recounted what happened. Officer Cassandra Bissett said Loving “did not make any verbal threats to her,” according to an arrest warrant. But it was when Giraldo arrived that the tension escalated, Miami-Dade Sgt. Waldo Thomas Lorente wrote in the warrant. In the span of six minutes, body-camera videos showed, Giraldo began peppering the women with questions, then grew agitated as the women became emotional while recounting the incident. “We’re not trying to scream at you. We’re just trying to explain,” Green said. At one point, Loving asked if she could go call her sick daughter. “You need to chill out! You need to chill out,” Giraldo said. “Excuse me,” Loving cried. “You’re being disorderly rightly now,” Giraldo yelled back. The back and forth went on, with Loving becoming more emotional, crying out that she “just had a gun pointed in my face.” “Do not touch me!” Loving cried. Body-cam and cellphone footage showed that Giraldo pushed Loving into a fence, then corralled her to the ground while officers handcuffed her. Tumm was not initially arrested for the shotgun threat. Instead, Loving was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest without violence. After video surfaced of the arrest, prosecutors dropped the charges against Loving, and filed charges against Tumm, the neighbor who allegedly pointed the shotgun at her. In filing charges against Giraldo, investigators said he lied when he wrote in his report that Loving “would not obey my commands.” Body-cam videos showed his “commands” were just to “calm down” and “chill out.” Loving is seen on camera complying with these ‘commands,’ according to the warrant by Lorente and prosecutor Kerrie Crockett. The warrant also said Loving was never seen being “uncooperative” and “causing a scene in a residential neighborhood.” “There is no evidence that Loving’s ‘screaming’ at Giraldo caused anyone to leave their house to witness” the incident, the warrant said.
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Miami-Dade Cop Charged After Brutalizing Woman Who Tried to Report Crime

Postby smix » Sat May 04, 2019 7:19 am

Miami-Dade Cop Charged After Brutalizing Woman Who Tried to Report Crime
Miami New Times

URL: https://www.miaminewtimes.com/news/miam ... e-11163919
Category: Police
Published: May 3, 2019

Description: Civil rights activists have been begging Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle for weeks to arrest county police officer Alejandro Giraldo, who was filmed brutally arresting Dyma Loving, a woman who was simply trying to report that a man had threatened to murder her with a shotgun. Today, Rundle's office finally announced the state is taking action. Prosecutors have charged Giraldo with one count of misdemeanor battery and felony official misconduct. Bond has been set at $5,500. "After taking the sworn statements of Ms. Dyma Loving, Ms. Adrianna Green, all the other available witnesses, and reviewing all the known video evidence, we believe that there is sufficient evidence to charge a violation of Florida’s criminal statutes," Rundle's office said this afternoon in a media release.

miami-dade-police-brutalizing-woman.jpg

Loving's case is one of the more blatant instances of police misconduct to emerge in quite some time. Around 10 a.m. March 5, the 26-year-old Loving and her friend Adrianna Green were walking around their South Miami-Dade neighborhood when, they say, a 50-year-old neighbor, Frank Tumm, whipped out a shotgun and threatened to shoot Loving's "burnt black ass face" off of her body. The women say Tumm pointed the shotgun at them. Naturally, Loving called the cops to report the incident. But when MDPD officers arrived, Giraldo treated Loving like the aggressor rather than the victim. Giraldo — a field-training officer who mentored other cops — implied Loving should be committed to a mental institution before saying she "needed to be corrected, if anything." It was all caught on video that confirmed Loving at no point acted violently toward the officer. But without warning, Giraldo grabbed Loving by the wrist and forced her to the ground. Amazingly, the cops let Tumm walk. MDPD didn't arrest him until March 15 — two days after the video went viral. Loving has since sued the police department, but she and her lawyers have steadfastly maintained that a lawsuit wouldn't be enough to right the wrong she felt was done to her. On April 23, two activist groups delivered more than 50,000 petitions to Rundle's office demanding Giraldo be arrested. Following the announcement, Loving's lawyer, Justin Moore, released a statement demanding that every officer involved in the case be treated the same as Giraldo. "We want to applaud the State Attorney’s Office for seeking formal charges for Officer Alejandro Giraldo, the lead perpetrator of the crimes committed against Dyma Loving," Moore said. "It is well known that police officers rarely face criminal liability for criminal behavior in this country. And although Dyma has expressed relief that Officer Giraldo has been charged for his abhorrent behavior on March 5, 2019, she does believes that the battery she experienced that day should have amounted to a felony and that other officers present, including but not limited to Officer J.F. Calderon, should be facing similar charges. Furthermore, the fact is that the other officers involved in Dyma's arrest assisted Officer Giraldo and drafted police reports detailing the incident; it is more than reasonable that they meet the same scrutiny that Officer Giraldo has received."
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Miami-Dade police officer to face criminal charges in rough arrest

Postby smix » Sat May 04, 2019 7:31 am

Miami-Dade police officer to face criminal charges in rough arrest
WPLG Local 10

URL: https://www.local10.com/news/florida/mi ... al-charges
Category: Police
Published: May 3, 2019

Description: Videos showed officer taking down woman who reported crime

alejandro-giraldo-dyma-loving.jpg

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. - Authorities have arrested a Miami-Dade County police officer who was recorded getting into a struggle with a woman after she had reported a crime. Officer Alejandro Giraldo faces charges of official misconduct and battery. "After taking the sworn statements ... and reviewing all the known video evidence, we believe that there is sufficient evidence to charge a violation of Florida's criminal statutes," prosecutors said in a statement. Dyma Loving said a neighbor pulled a gun on her while she was walking in southwest Miami-Dade County in early March. Loving called police for help, but when Giraldo arrived, she and Giraldo started to argue. Giraldo eventually grabbed Loving by the neck, forced her to the ground and arrested her. A bystander recorded the incident using a mobile phone. The Miami-Dade Police Department also released video from Giraldo's body camera. After video of the arrest attracted widespread attention, the department relieved Giraldo of duty, calling the incident "deeply troubling." "An arrest of one of our own is disappointing, and overshadows the hard work of the dedicated men and women of law enforcement, who strive daily to serve and protect our community," Miami-Dade County police Director Juan Perez said in a statement. "This particular case underscores our commitment to cooperate and work together with the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office in our continued effort to hold ourselves accountable." Loving, 26, was initially charged with disorderly conduct and resisting an officer without violence, but those charges were later dropped. She is pursuing a civil lawsuit against Giraldo. Although Loving's attorney, Justin Moore, praised the Miami-Dade County State Attorney's Office for prosecuting Giraldo, he said he and his client were disappointed with the severity of the charges. "She does believe that the battery she experienced that day should have amounted to a felony and that other officers present, including but not limited to Officer J.F. Calderon should be facing similar charges," Moore said. In the arrest report, prosecutors rebutted Giraldo's explanations for why he arrested Loving. In his police report, Giraldo said Loving would not obey commands, was uncooperative and screamed at officers. However, prosecutors said they found no evidence to support Giraldo's statements. In the video, prosecutors said Loving did obey Giraldo's commands, calming down after Giraldo threatened her with arrest. Officer Cassandra Bissett, who initially responded to Loving's call, said Loving was upset, but was not being disruptive. "Giraldo knowingly and intentionally caused harm to Ms. Loving," the report said. Giraldo was arrested on Thursday and has since been released from jail.
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