NEWARK, NJ- A Paterson police officer is due in federal court Wednesday afternoon following his arrest for allegedly participating in the assault of a patient at St. Joseph’s Medical Center.
According to a statement by U.S. Attorney Craig Carpentino, Roger Then, 29, also recorded the assault on his cell phone and failed to include information related to the incident in his report.
Then has been charged with conspiring to violate an individual’s civil rights and with misprision of felony for concealing the civil rights violation and faces up to 13 years in prison as well as a fine of up to $500,000.
According to the complaint:
On March 5, 2018, Then and another Paterson police officer, identified in the complaint as “Police Officer 1,” responded to a call from an attempted suicide victim and met the victim at the hospital.
Surveillance footage appears to show the victim, while in a wheelchair, throw an object down the hall. Police Officer 1 then appears to push the wheelchair and punch the victim in the face, while Then grabs the victim and pushes him to the ground.
In a video allegedly taken by Then on his cell phone the victim “verbally insults” Police Officer 1 who responds by striking the victim across the face and saying “I ain’t f****** playing with you.”
The victim suffered multiple injuries to his face, including one to the victim’s eye which required surgery.
Police reports filed in connection with the incident did not mention the actions depicted in the videos.
As a result of these assaults, the victim suffered multiple injuries to his face, including an eye injury that required surgery.
Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Gregory W. Ehrie in Newark, with the investigation leading to the arrest and also thanked the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia M. Valdes, the Paterson Police Department, under the direction of Paterson Police Director Jerry Speziale and Police Chief Troy Oswald, and the Paterson Police Department Office of Internal Affairs, for their assistance in the investigation.