PATERSON, NJ -Paterson police officers involved in the September 28 arrest of Raasean Adams, an incident which garnered attention well beyond Paterson's borders following the circulation of a video that some claimed showed the use of excessive force, will face no charges following a review by the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office in consultation with the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General.
Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia M. Valdes and Paterson Police Chief Troy Oswald recounted the incident in a Monday press release which stated that on the day in question Adams approached police conducting a motor vehicle stop which led to a narcotics arrest. Adams allegedly attempted to take the keys to the vehicle involved in the narcotics arrest from an officer’s hand at which time the report states that he was asked to leave the scene but refused. Adams is hearing impaired
As seen in the video police attempted to subdue Adams when, the report states, “one of the officers struck Mr. Adams with his elbow to gain compliance.” After failing to handcuff the suspect the officer “utilized OC spray to Mr. Adams face.” Eventually handcuffed Adams refused to enter the patrol vehicle and “threw himself on the ground” before being transported to St. Joseph’s Medical Center, it reads.
Adams pled guilty on October 2 to a charge of Obstructing Administration of Law or Other Governmental Function for his role in the incident.
Valdes and Oswald went on to say that they will review the entire police response to the incident to determine if all Departmental policies and guidelines were followed and take administrative or corrective action, if appropriate and will review current de-escalation training to determine if additional or modified training should be undertaken.
“We are appreciative of and encouraged by the actions of community members to help de-escalate the incident,” Mayor Andre Sayegh, who held a meeting with community leaders days after the incident said in response to the decision by the Prosecutor’s Office. “We need to see more of that from police officers and the community,” he continued before adding that his administration will fully participate in “listening sessions” set to be organized Operation Ceasefire.