police indicted on assault, falsifying reports
A Bloomfield, New Jersey man faced a multitude of criminal charges, including eluding police and assault in which he was facing years in prison, until a dashcam video contradicted the version of events given by police.
30-year old Marcus Jeter spoke with ABC affiliate KTRK saying if the tape had not surfaced, “I’d be in jail.”
Because of the tapes, two Bloomfield police officers have been indicted for falsifying reports, and one of them, for assault.
This video was turned over by Bloomfield police but only after Jeter’s attorney filed a request for records — at the time prosecutors were insistent that Jeter do prison time.
Jeter said, “The first plea was 5 years.”
The incident began when the police were called to Jeter’s home which he shares with his girlfriend. Jeter says he left after briefly talking to officers and no charges were filed.
In the video, Jeter is seen pulling over and stopping for the police, but the cops pulled out their guns.
When asked why he didn’t get out of the car, Jeter said, ”Because I was afraid. There was a cop on my right with a gun, a cop on the other side with a shotgun.” He added, ”I’m afraid I might get shot.”
The second tape obtained shows a different picture from what the police alleged. A second police car coming from the opposite direction, crosses the median into ongoing traffic, and then strikes Jeter’s car. That fact was absent in the police report.
When Jeter first told his attorney that part of the story, he said, ”It was incredible, I didn’t believe it at that point in time.” He added, “The next thing I know, one of them busts the door and there is glass all over my face.”
Jeter immediately put his hands up.
Jeter said, “As soon as they opened the door, one officer reached in an punched me in my face.” He added, “As he’s trying to take off my seatbelt, I’m thinking something is going to go wrong.”
He further explained, ”They handcuffed me and one of them hits me in the back.”
Right after seeing the video, prosecutors dismissed all of the charges against Jeter.
An investigation by Bloomfield PD’s scandal plagued internal affairs division had found no wrongdoing by officers, KTRK reports.
Steven Brown, Jeter’s attorney said, “I believe the blame is with the Bloomfield police department for not providing that tape. If we hadn’t had the tapes in this case, an innocent man would be in jail today.”