Jonathan Josey, the ex Philadelphia Police Lieutenant who was arrested following a video taken by a cell phone last year , showing him slapping a female who was doing nothing wrong, before arresting her was found not guilty. The bench trial, in front of Judge Patrick Dugan lasted one day.
The judge heard testimony from Josey that he was attempting to slap a beer bottle from Aida Guzman during the Puerto Rican Day Parade. Josey did not have any beer, only a bottle of water. The verdict was announced today and it was set of powerful emotions on both sides of the isle.
Guzman was infuriated and said , through her attorney that she will file a Federal Civil Rights lawsuit against the Philadelphia Police Department. How far that goes remains to be seen. It is a 180 degree turn from last fall, when Guzman stated she had "No interest" in a lawsuit, and only wanted an apology from the city. She got that apology within a week of the incident, during a private meeting with Mayor Michael Nutter. That apology could boost her claim, depending on what it said.
Lt. Josey was fired from his job and Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey said that "I am not going to give him a shot at getting back on the force. I fired him before charges were filed. He he wants his job back, he'll have to file for it under arbitration". Guzman has said repeatedly that she did not want Josey to lose his job.
Many people in the Hispanic community are outraged and have turned that outrage into mistrust of the police. Some have even cried racism. Aida Guzman is Hispanic, Jonathan Josey is black and the judge is white. It would be hard to make that claim stick.
Josey has said that he will fight to get his job back with back pay. Judge Dugan said that he would not allow the video to be taken out of context, nor would he allow the public to dictate a verdict.
You can see the video here
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