NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An NYPD officer now finds himself on the other side of the law.
He was arrested Wednesday, charged with assaulting a man in custody and then making false statements about what really happened, CBS2’s Andrea Grymes reported.READ MORE: Calls For Immediate Change Ring Out After 36-Year-Old Asian Man Stabbed In The Back In Lower Manhattan
Officer Elijah Saladeen breezed past CBS2 cameras while leaving court. The NYPD cop is accused of flagrantly abusing his position.
Prosecutors say the 48-year-old housing cop beat up a homeless man in handcuffs and then lied about it, including on official records.
Saladeen pleaded not guilty Wednesday to seven counts of misdemeanor assault and other charges.
The incident in question allegedly happened back in February 2017 at the Fulton Houses in Chelsea. Prosecutors say Saladeen responded to a trespasser — a 19-year-old homeless man sleeping in a stairwell. They said the officer put him in handcuffs without a problem, but then both started struggling with each other in the elevator on the way down, spilling onto the lobby floor.READ MORE: New COVID Variant First Detected In New York City Spreading In Northeast
“The defendant repeatedly punched the complainant about the head and the face,” prosecutor Philip Gary said.
Prosecutors say Saladeen then dragged the teen to the back of the lobby — still in cuffs — and continued punching him.
Saladeen’s attorney, Rae Koshetz, said force was used in a difficult situation.
“My information is that this man was resisting while he was in custody,” Koshetz said.
The NYPD said Saladeen was suspended without pay.MORE NEWS: Evolving Social Media Apps Emphasize Talking Over Texting
In a statement, the Manhattan district attorney said the alleged conduct weakens public trust in law enforcement. The judge set bond at $50,000.