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Video may help man win lawsuit against officers

September 11, 2012 3:34:01 PM PDT
A surveillance video starts with 19-year-old Luis Solivan being held down by police on his kitchen floor. Then an officer punches him in the face.

They allegedly kicked down his door, pepper-sprayed him in the face, and took turns punching him and kicking him in front of his mother and two little brothers.

Solivan says he was scared that night, and is still scared nearly a year later. The Morris Park teen claims he suffered a broken nose and ended up in the hospital because of his beating. He was charged with assault and resisting arrest, but a grand jury refused to indict him after seeing the one minute cell phone video his friend taped through a window.

Court documents show Solivan was walking home last November when a marked police cruiser sounded a siren and made a sudden u-turn towards him. Instead of stopping, the unarmed teen ducked into his basement apartment.

In a statement, Police Deputy Commissioner Paule Browne said, "On probation for attempted murder, he tried to take a gun away from the officer and then, later, refused to cooperate with independent CCRB investigators when they tried to verify his complaints against police."

At the time of the incident, Solivan was awaiting sentencing on an attempted murder charge from a stabbing fight with other teens. Last month, his attorney says he got probation as a youthful offender.

"Those officers committed police brutality of the worst kind. It's on tape, we can see it ? they're still working for NYPD, they're still interacting with the public. Why are they there?" said Lawyer Ilann Maazel.

Solivan's suit doesn't specify how much he is looking for in damages for what he believes was excessive force, false arrest and malicious prosecution.

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