Mr. Mineo, whom the police suspected of smoking marijuana, told investigators he was sodomized with an object while the officers grappled with him. A transit officer who took part in the arrest testified that Officer Kern touched Mr. Mineo’s buttocks with his baton.
Colleagues and supervisors of Officer Kern's have come out in support of him. They say he is a good officer with a clean record, definitely not someone who would do something like this. Yet...
Twice previously, Officer Kern was accused of using excessive force. but his lawyer said he was cleared in both cases by the Civilian Complaint Review Board. One of the incidents, in 2007, prompted two lawsuits that the city agreed to settle for a total of $50,000.
Officer Kern was accused of making unlawful arrests and manhandling people washing their coats in the laundry room of a Brooklyn housing project.
Like the two earlier lawsuits, it alleges that Officer Kern struck Mr. Acuna with his gun, unnecessarily sprayed him with Mace and choked him.
What's it sound like to you? I'd be the first one to point out that cops who do wrong should be given the benefit of the doubt like anybody else. But, shouldn't they be held to a higher standard? Shouldn't the public trust placed upon them demand more than it does of a regular citizen? What do you think?
What I think is Officer Kern is just 25 years old, has been on the job only a couple years, and has already been involved in several questionable situations. This doesn't happen to straight cops who conduct themselves properly. He sounds like a violent, dangerous young man with a badge and a gun. I don't know who's more frightening: guys like him or the criminals he's supposed to protect us from.
And what do you think about that Blue Wall of Silence, the colleagues and supervisors who unequivocally stand behind him. Only one Transit Cop reported that he'd seen something untoward. Cops protecting each other even when wrongdoing occurs, is what, some kind of loyalty? What do you think?