YouTube cop pleads not guilty to assault on cyclist

Officer originally claimed cyclist assaulted him

by Tony Farrelly   December 18, 2008  

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A New York policeman seen in a video posted on YouTube shoving a cyclist from his bike has pleaded not guilty to various charges of assault.

The cyclist, Christopher Long, was knocked from his bike during a Critical Mass demonstration in June. He was originally charged by the policeman, Patrick Pogan, with resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and obstructing government administration. All those charges were dismissed when the video was produced in evidence by his lawyer (watch the video below).

Officer Pogan was immediately suspended and found himself charged with falsifying business records and filing a false instrument. Both are felonies punishable by sixteen months to four years in prison. He also faces misdemeanour charges of third-degree assault, second-degree harassment and making a punishable false written statement.

According to Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau “Pogan falsified details in the criminal complaint and other paperwork related to Long’s arrest, claiming Long steered his bike into the officer and injured him.”

However the video shot by a bystander showed “Pogan singling out Long and purposely body-checking Long off the bike.”Said Morgenthau.

Officer Pogan had only been on the force for three weeks and because he is a probationary officer he faces dismissal whatever the outcome of the court case which is scheduled to resume at the start of February.