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1 Of 2 East Haven Officers Sentenced In Discrimination Case

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(credit: CBS 2)

(credit: CBS 2)

HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP) — One of two former East Haven, Conn. officers convicted of violating Latinos’ civil rights was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison Tuesday.

David Cari was convicted back in October of conspiring to violate the constitutional rights of Hispanics, making false arrests and filing false reports.

Sentencing for the other officer in the case, Dennis Spaulding, was continued until Thursday. He is seeking home confinement and community service.

Cari and Spaulding were among four East Haven officers charged with harassing and abusing Hispanics in 2012. The other two officers pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing.

Prosecutors said they sought multi-year prison sentences to send a message that no one, not even police, are above the law.

Lawyers for Cari and Spaulding have said federal prosecutors didn’t prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt, while prosecutors said the evidence showed the defendants engaged in racial profiling and harassment.

Police treatment of Hispanics in East Haven has been under federal scrutiny since 2009, when the U.S. Department of Justice launched a civil rights probe that found a pattern of discrimination and biased policing.

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