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Police brutality rally in New Jersey

June 6, 2009 5:52:58 PM PDT
There was a rally against police brutality in New Jersey. It follows Friday's release of a surveillance videotape showing a police officer beating a man outside a bar in Passaic. The man is Ronnie Holloway and he was badly beaten back on May 29.

Holloway and another woman, claiming the same officer beat her, were at Saturday's rally.

The protestors say the case of Ronnie Holloway is just too much to ignore.

To view the alleged beating, provided by The Bergen Record. , go to, http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/video?id=6850653.

"If my son was in the wrong it would be one thing, but he wasn't doing a thing," Betty Holloway, Ronnie Holloway's mother said.

A surveillance tape just happened to capture the whole thing.

It showed a cop getting out of his car and getting more than a little rough with a man standing on a street corner.

"I didn't know if I was going to see tomorrow at that point," Ronnie Holloway said.

Shawanna Barksdale, a Passaic resident was at the rally, as well.

She told Eyewitness News she was beaten by the same officer a year ago, but the case was dismissed.

Through tears Barksdale said, "...it just hurts, he shouldn't even be on the force anymore."

One week after the beating, Ronnie Holloway's eye is still black and blue. But it's an improvement.

"I don't know why he did that, I respect the law," said Holloway.

Last Friday, surveillance footage shows Holloway waiting outside Lawrence's restaurant in Passaic when a police cruiser pulls up and a female officer asks Holloway to zip up his sweatshirt. Holloway appears to comply, but in an instant, Officer Joseph Rios III jumps out and starts beating him.

That's not all. The video shows Officer Rios beats Holloway with his fists and his baton.

The 49-year-old, who is on medication for schizophrenia, does not appear to resist but that doesn't stop Officer Rios. At one point, he seems to stand Holloway back up, only to bodyslam him into the police cruiser.

Officer Rios' partner looks like she's trying to intervene, but the punches don't stop until back-up arrives.

Holloway, who says he has no police record, was arrested on charges of resisting arrest and wandering with the intent to buy drugs. He has filed a complaint and an Internal Affairs investigation is underway.

"It's a clear example of brutality, that officer needs to be removed from the police force," said Holloway's lawyer, Nancy Lucianna.

Officer Rios, a seven-year veteran on the force, remains on active duty. Passaic police had no comment.


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