Woman Says She Was Assaulted By NYPD Officer
An NYPD officer is under investigation for a possible hate crime after a Brooklyn woman accused him of calling her homophobic slurs before assaulting her.
29-year-old Stephanie Dorceant was arrested on the morning of July 11 after allegedly assaulting Officer Salvator Aquino, according to Huffington Post.
She is facing charges of assault, menacing, resisting arrest and harassment.
But according to Dorceant, Aquino attacked her.
Below is a statement released by her attorneys Thursday:
“On July 11th I was in Brooklyn, where I live and work, heading from a concert with my girlfriend when, out of nowhere a large man bumped me from behind. I asked him if he was ok. He then barked at me, and I will quote: ‘mind your own business you f***ing d*ke.’”
He then attacked me, punched me in the face a number of times, choked me and called me several more anti-gay slurs. When he had his hands around my neck I truly thought I was going to die. I could not breathe. The only way I could get him to stop attacking me and my girlfriend was to bite him.
When other police officers showed up I thought we were saved. That was not the case. It turned out that this man was an off-duty police officer. Instead of helping me and my girlfriend and arresting our attacker, more officers piled on top of me, slamming me onto the pavement and putting their knees on my neck, shoulders, and back. They then put us both into handcuffs and threw us into a holding cell in the precinct. After being processed at the precinct I was taken to the hospital, and then to central bookings.
At my arraignment, they said that I had assaulted the cop and that I had used racial slurs. Even though I have no record, and their story was a complete lie, bail was set and I ended up at Riker’s Island.
My attacker has still not been charged or arrested.
Even though I am well aware of the many stories about police brutality, especially against blacks, Hispanics, and the LGBT community, I never really thought that this could happen to me. I want to share my story and say that police brutality is a real thing. Hate crimes are a real thing. Both of these things happened to me. Enough is enough.”
The criminal complaint against Dorceant alleges that Aquino saw Dorceant and her significant other, Nandi Allman, “arguing” as he was walking to his personal vehicle. When the two bumped into each other, according to the complaint, Dorceant attacked Aquino and “punched him in the face.” Dorceant also allegedly resisted arrest and “proceeded to bite [Aquino] repeatedly about the arms, chest, finger and torso, breaking [Aquino’s] skin.”
Dorceant said the complaint was nothing but lies at a press conference on Thursday as she choked back tears. She said the couple was not arguing, but were “talking and laughing” as they return from a music performance in Brooklyn.
Allman, who was also present at the press conference, said she thought Dorceant was “going to die” when she saw Aquino throw her head to the ground.
Dorceant’s lawyer, Benjamin Zeman, said both women are small and posed no threat to the officer.
Check back for updates.