Gwinnett DA: Criminal charges could be filed against fired officers next week

Lauren Perry
April 16, 2017

Hours later, a second video surfaced showing Bongiovanni punching that same handcuffed man. "This officer and his actions do not represent the men and women of this police department who put their lives on the line every single day to protect this county". When he was released from jail, Hollins didn't say much.

Subsequently, the department announced it was firing McDonald's supervisor, Sergeant Michael Bongiovanni, after it said police discovered a second video taken from a different angle.

In California, a police officer in Sacramento is under criminal investigation after he was captured on video throwing an accused jaywalker to the ground and punching him repeatedly.

In this undated Gwinnett County Police Department photo, Sgt. Michael Bongiovanni poses for an official portrait.

Commanders said Bongiavonni never reported that he punched Hollins, but turned in McDonald for kicking the suspect in the head.

"Hollins refused to place his hands behind his back, spun around and began to actively resist arrest by bending at the waist and trying to push me away", he said in his incident report. The incident was captured on cellphone video by a witness stuck behind the stopped auto and the police vehicle. The two men could possibly face criminal charges.

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"There is no question when there is a video that emerges that shows clearly what occurred, police departments are reacting more quickly", says Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Washington-based Police Executive Research Forum, a group of law enforcement professionals. As Attorney General Jeff Sessions moves to de-emphasize reform that might address the issue of police brutality, it's unlikely the picture will become clearer anytime soon. His mother, Tamara Crenshaw says she's still shaken up about what happened to her son. Bongiovanni says when he approached the auto he smelled marijuana.

"I ordered Hollins out of the auto". At one point, Hollins reached under a seat where officers later found a gun.

McDonald was forthcoming, saying he was wrong for kicking Hollins. He wrote that Hollins was acting unusual and started yelling, "I need my mom". But Bongiovanni reportedly didn't. "The video was filmed by a witness and shows the man getting out of the vehicle with both hands up".

Bongiavonni did admit he stunned Hollins with a Taser, authorities said.

"He start (ed) shoving me in my auto and telling me that I was never going to have a video, that I was never going to make the phone call to my mom", he said in the television interview.

"You don't picture yourself seeing a police officer do that live and in person", said eyewitness Kenneth Dillard. "As he stands with his hands up, Michael Bongiovanni strikes the man in the face".

Other reports by VgToday

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