New Jersey prosecutors have dropped all charges against a man accused of assault, eluding police and resisting arrest following the release of new dash-cam video that proved his innocence.
Marcus Jeter, 30, was facing years in prison and says he would have been convicted had the video not surfaced. Now, it’s the officers seen in the video striking Jeter — clearly not resisting and with his hands up — who are facing face charges.
“I’d be in jail,” he told WABC-TV, adding that his “first plea was five years.”
The video, which was only turned over after Jeter’s lawyer filed a request for the records, documents the 2012 incident with Bloomfield police.
It started when officers were called to the home he shared with his girlfriend, according to WABC-TV. No charges were filed and Jeter peacefully left after speaking with police.
“They say you eluded police,” WABC-TV reporter Sarah Wallace told Jeter in an interview.
“When they got behind me, I pulled over,” he replied.
Dash-cam video shows exactly that. It clearly shows Jeter pulling over and stopping on the highway.
Moments later, officers drew their guns and another squad car crossed over the median into oncoming traffic, striking Jeter’s car. There was no mention of that additional squad in the police report.
“It was incredible, I didn’t believe it at that point in time,” he told WABC. “The next thing I know, one of them busts the door and there is glass all over my face.”
Jeter can be seen in the new dash-cam video with his hands up, not resisting. Meanwhile, officers continue hitting the 30-year-old, shouting “do not resist” while repeatedly striking him.
“All I keep saying is I’m not doing anything,” Jeter recounted. “They handcuffed me and one of them hits me in the back.”
When prosecutors viewed the footage, all charges were immediately dropped. Two Bloomfield officers have now been indicted for falsifying reports. A third has already pleaded guilty to tampering.
An investigation launched by internal affairs concluded that there had been no wrongdoing by officers, WABC reported.
“I believe the blame is with the Bloomfield police department for not providing that tape,” said Steven Brown, Jeter’s attorney. “If we hadn’t had the tapes in this case, an innocent man would be in jail today.”
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