Update: The Mayor said he will not fire the police. The protester who fell was an “agitator.” Byron Brown, the mayor of Buffalo, said Friday that the man who fell was an “agitator” who had been asked to leave “numerous times.”
“What we were informed of is that that individual was an agitator. He was trying to spark up the crowd of people. Those people were there into the darkness. Our concern is when it gets dark, there is a potential for violence,” Brown said.
“There has been vandalism, there have been fires set, there have been stores broken into and looted. According to what was reported to me, that individual was a key major instigator of people engaging in those activities,” the mayor said.
Brown said he will not insist that the two cops be fired because they need to get “due process”.
The entire Buffalo Police Department Emergency Response Team has resigned after the department suspended two officers without pay when a video surfaced showing them shoving a 75-year-old protester. The 57 officers are still employed, they only resigned from the Team.
They shoved the man, who, as it turns out, is a professional activist. He’s a longtime peace activist.
John Evans, president of the Buffalo Police Benevolent Association, announced the 57-member team’s resignation at a press conference Friday.
“Fifty-seven resigned in disgust because of the treatment of two of their members, who were simply executing orders,” Evans told a local NBC affiliate.
In a graphic video (see below) shot by a WBFO journalist, the officers yell for the man, 75-year-old Martin Gugino, to move back before one or two appear to push him before he falls backward, slams his head and then is bleeding and motionless on the ground. One of the officers appears to lean over and say something to the fallen Gugino before a fellow officer pulls him away.
A person can be heard yelling “He’s bleeding out of his ear!” and calling for medics. The man is seen lying on his back with blood trickling from his head.
The Buffalo Police Department initially said the man tripped and fell.
After the officer pushed him, he lost his balance and fell backward.
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown (D) said in a statement that he “was deeply disturbed by the video.”
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) got involved, having no facts, and wrote in a tweet that “Police Officers must enforce — NOT ABUSE — the law,” adding that he and Brown agreed that the “officers involved should be immediately suspended pending a formal investigation.
The man has a number of health issues and is still in the hospital.
You can watch the video, but videos don’t tell the whole story. The officers were trying to push him out of the way, not knock him out. He lost his footing.
Condemning people based on videos on Twitter is just wrong, but that’s what is happening. Cuomo is involved and it’s political. He needs to butt out and let all the information go through a review, fairly. Unfortunately, the officers are being tried and convicted on Twitter.
CW – Police Violence.
Cops in Buffalo push an elderly man to the ground and pretty much ignore him as the blood pours out.
Hold them to account. pic.twitter.com/LQ3lgkALuz
— Anarchist 💣Federation ❤🖤 (@AnarchistFed) June 5, 2020
THIS IS WHAT WENT ON BEFORE
Read the description. It seems the officers might have been doing what they were trained to do.
Mr. Gugino is not supportive of police.