Federal lawsuit over alleged police abuse video

July 1, 2013 2:38:14 PM PDT
A shocking, brutal new video shows police officers beating and kicking two men in custody.

The whole violent scene took place in Paterson as the suspects laid on the ground in handcuffs.

It has now sparked a federal lawsuit.

The security camera video is graphic.

Attorneys say it shows a swarm of Paterson police officers beating and kicking two men as they lay on the ground handcuffed during an arrest back in 2011.

"Once an arrest is made and there is absolutely no resisting. These officers should not be taking justice into their own hands thereafter," said Darren Del Sardo, attorney.

"You have an individual that is unconscious and the beating continues to go on," said Matthew DiBrino, attorney.

That man, Miguel Rivera, says he suffered numerous injuries including a broken eye bone and a concussion, but because he was knocked out almost immediately, he only knows what happened that night by watching the videotape.

"It's not that I get angry. I feel sorry that it had to come to that. I just don't want that to happen to anybody else," Rivera said.

A just-filed federal lawsuit, accuses Paterson Police of using excessive force in a so-called revenge beating.

The second man in the video, Alexis Aponte, seen being dragged by the ankle to a squad car, had reportedly been in an earlier altercation that same evening with an off-duty Paterson officer.

"They wanted to impose their own sentence on these two individuals as opposed to letting it go through the system," Del Sardo said.

There is no specific dollar amount attached to the lawsuit, attorneys say that will be up to a jury.

As for what Miguel Rivera believes should happen to the police officers who he says beat him senseless for no good reason, "I just want them to get what they deserve, that's all," he said.