What began as an afternoon playing basketball in a Western New York park quickly escalated when 17-year old Donte Bertino was arrested by some overly aggressive police officers.
The incident captured on camera Monday, shows Brockport police officers approaching Bertino and his friends asking them to leave the park. Clearly annoyed at the situation, the teen begrudgingly began walking away from the situation when officer Richard Cranston attempted to grab him.
Bertino told the officer not to touch him, as he was complying with the demands and there was no justification for the officer to get physical with him.
In a split second, Cranston put Bertino under arrest, wrestling him to the ground with the help of the other two officers. He was charged with obstructing, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
After attaining a copy of the police report, Bertino’s father spoke in defense of his son.
“The arresting officers lied on the police report saying my son threatened the officer and cursed at the officer. In the unedited video, you can plainly hear he never cursed at the officer,” Dante’s father, Jeremy Bertino, told The Free Thought Project.
“They messed with the wrong guy’s son. I am very informed of the laws and our rights and how they are trampled on daily,” his father stated. “If everyone just keeps allowing the cops to violate our rights it will only get worse. We have to take a stand against the tyranny that is being allowed daily in this country by us citizens. The cops are trained to violate our rights for their arrest quotas.”
He plans to file an official complaint on his sons’ behalf.
Without having even seen the video, Brockport Police Chief Daniel Varrenti, defended the actions of the officers when he spoke with local news outlet WROC.
“I think the officers acted accordingly, if someone here in the Village of Brockport wants to come here and challenge a police officer’s lawful orders, they will be arrested,” Varrenti stated. “They chose not to disperse. They chose to resist arrest. They chose to obstruct governmental administration. Those were their choices. Had they just dispersed, we wouldn’t be here today.”
Varrenti’s blind defense of the officers should come as no surprise as this incident represents yet another case of a leader toeing the blue line rather holding each cops accountable and protecting the rights of everyday citizens.