Passaic Rally Against Police Brutality In N.J.


police-brutalityThe police officer accused of beating a mentally-disturbed man outside of a restaurant in Passaic has been placed on desk duty. Over 100 people carried signs outside Passaic City Hall yesterday demanding the police department fire officer Joseph Rios III. Rios was seen on a surveillance tape hitting 49-year-old Ronnie Holloway with his fists and a baton. Sporting a swollen eye and bruised ribs, Holloway said he doesn’t know what led to the encounter. “I know I deserve better the way I was treated,” Holloway said.“He grabbed me with both hands at the collar area real physically hard and just flung me up against the police vehicle,” Holloway said. “I recall him saying, ‘get down’ as he swung, but he kept swinging like that,” he said.

“It is a clear case of police brutality and it’s got to stop. That officer needs to be removed from the police force,” Holloway’s attorney, Nancy Lucianna, said. “The officers never dreamt there’d be a video tape showing exactly what went on.”

The department is asking the community to withhold judgment until the Internal Affairs investigation is complete. Holloway, who has no police record, was arrested on charges of resisting arrest and wandering with the intent to buy drugs.

Holloway himself wants the officer who repeatedly hit him taken off the force. “I feel he should definitely lose his job because it’s not fair to be treated that way,” he said.

Lucianna said she planned to file a lawsuit.

“A lawsuit is likely,” said mother Betty Holloway. “He’s a good person.”

She said her disabled son has schizophrenia, but his illness did not play a role in his beating.

{NY Newsday/ Newscenter}