Misconduct Charges Against City Cop Remain in Place

PATERSON, NJ – A judge on Friday decided not to dismiss official misconduct charges filed against a city police officer who allegedly assaulted two men he mistakenly thought had beat his son, according to a story on northjersey.com.

The officer, Frank Semmel, has tried to get the misconduct charge dropped on the grounds that it stemmed from statements and reports he made to the Paterson Police Department’s Internal Affairs unit about the incident, the story said. His lawyer argued that previous court ruling said such statements could not be used against the officer in criminal proceedings.

The incident happened in November 2010 and Semmel has been suspended since last winter, when he was originally charged in the case.  In addition to misconduct, he also faces aggravated assault charges.

As it turned out, the men authorities say Semmel mistakenly assaulted were a patient at a nearby facility for people with brain injuries and a staff therapist taking him for a walk.

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