On Saturday Asa Johnson, a CopBlock Network Contributor, posted “Video Shows Cop Attacking Teen for Refusing to Give Name,” stating:
The video was posted Saturday on Twitter by an individual claiming to be a friend of the teen.
He told this investigator that police responded to a party last night as people were leaving, and told the 18-year-old to stay.
He claims that after the the teen was assaulted he was charged with “hindering, resisting arrest, and obstruction” and “was not read his rights.”
Pictures posted to Facebook appear to show stitches or staples received to treat facial wounds allegedly sustained from police officers, and Cuneo claims he was knocked unconscious.
“I took two steps towards the door and they bum rushed me,” Cuneo said. “The cop I was talking to got on top of me on the ground and punched me three times in the face, knocking me unconscious.”
ORIGINAL VIDEO BELOW
Yesterday, Lehigh Valley CopBlock Founder Gabriel Freeman sat down with Cuneo, who agreed to speak with Freeman exclusively, to get the rest of the story.
“When I told him that I knew my rights, that aggravated him” is probably the most troubling statement Cuneo said during the interview. Only in the Police State of the USSA would standing up for your rights piss off the guy who swore to uphold them, leading him to violate them so blatantly. The irony there is just thick as can be, but when you remember that this call started over a ‘possible’ underage drinking call, you really lose your cool. Like, for fuck’s sake! The West Deptford Police must not have any real crimes to worry about if underage drinking is so high on their list and if giving 18 year-olds stitches is merely a casualty of the war on underage drinking. This is just absurd.
On a more serious note, I want to let Cuneo know, and those who may find themselves in this position in the future, that the mistake here was not failing to remain silent. Nor was it refusing to give the officers your name. Unfortunately, the only mistake was opening the door for the police in the first place. If the police ever come to your door, DO NOT ANSWER IT. In fact, check and double check all other doors and windows to make sure they’re locked, too. If you MUST talk to the police do it through a window or have them call you. You are NOT legally required to answer the door for the police. Even if they say they have a warrant, I still wouldn’t open the door; let them kick it in.
That being said, Chris, you still did a great job and clearly didn’t deserve to be sucker-punched. Even though the mistake of opening the door for the police happened, you still got the golden rule of police accountability down and had your camera rolling. Which not only allowed you to share your story with millions of others but will hopefully be the key to your ability to hold this officer accountable.
Stay tuned to CopBlock.org for more exclusives with Chris Cuneo as the story progresses.