Videos show man in Paterson wielding gun, claiming to be cop

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Toni Yates is in Paterson with the story (WABC)

Questions abound after videos surfaced of a man claiming to be a cop, waving a gun and even kicking a man on the ground in New Jersey. Police are not saying much about the videos, but the man's family says he was just defending his son.

But those who were at the scene have a different story.

"All I seen was this guy comes with his gun, pointing at people, innocent people," a witness said.

It happened on September 24, on Main Street in Paterson, when a man ran outside with his gun drawn, caught on camera, claiming to be a police officer. But he did not show a badge in any of the videos, on which you hear stunned people asking to see one.

It was allegedly his second altercation on the block. The first was captured by security cameras across the street, when he pushed a 20-year-old man to the ground.

"He hit him with the gun, then kicked him right in the face right here on the sidewalk," a witness said. "The other kid, he chased him down the street."

He then left, but showed up later with several uniformed officers. Eyewitness News was asked to protect the witnesses' identities.

"He was saying, 'I just want to know who fought with my son, who stabbed my son,'" a witness said. "He was just going crazy."

Witnesses say the man is a Paterson police officer whose son had been stabbed in a fight earlier that night a few blocks away. We went to the man's home, where a woman said she was the mother of the man with the gun.

"To find that they stabbed his son, he had to react, him and his wife," she said through a translator. "All he said was every father has a right to defend his son."

The video circulating is titled "Off duty South Paterson cop gone wild," and when we asked the police director about the videos, he said the department doesn't investigate YouTube videos and that no one filed a complaint.

But after we showed up at the officer's house, they showed up too, and spoke.

"I can't comment on a partial video...at this time, we have a stabbing that's being investigated," police director Jerry Speziale said. "We have a YouTube video that we don't have a complete video, and until someone brings us a full video, we have reports, and they have been forwarded to the Passaic County Prosecutor's Office."

The man who seen on camera being kicked tells Eyewitness News he has retained an attorney and plans on filing a complaint with the prosecutor's office and with federal agents.

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