ROBESON COUNTY, NC – An officer with the Rowland Police Department had to be airlifted to a hospital Oct. 17 following a vicious attack lodged against him when he tried to make an arrest during a disturbance call.
The brutal beating was captured on video by a bystander who encouraged the suspect to continue attacking the police officer.
— WPDE ABC15 (@wpdeabc15) October 17, 2020
Rowland Police Chief Hubert B. Graham identified the officer who was attacked on video as 27-year-old Michael Sale. The officer was reportedly responding to a disturbance call when he encountered Jamel Alphonso Rogers.
While it’s not clear what Rogers was initially suspected of, at some point during that response Officer Sale attempted to place Rogers in handcuffs.
The video recorded by a bystander shows the suspect with a pair of handcuffs dangling from one of his wrists while he struggles with the officer.
The entire video runs about 11 minutes and shows the suspect constantly resisting arrest and intermittently throwing punches at Sale.
During the physical altercation, Sale calls for help from the bystander filming the altercation.
In response, the unidentified man instead mocks the officer, saying he has no intention of helping him out – and then goads the suspect into continuing the attack on the officer.
At one point, another onlooker pulled the suspect off of Sale, which provoked the man recording to tell others to not get involved or help the officer.
According to Graham, Sale was the only officer on duty that evening in the rural town about 50 miles south of Fayetteville, which is why backup hadn’t arrived on scene as quickly as one might expect.
At some point during the altercation, Sale lost his equipment – including his side arm.
The loss of the officer’s gun during the assault was also mocked by the unidentified man who was recording.
During the disturbing assault, the man recording brings the camera in for a close-up of the officer’s face. In the frames in which Officer Sale’s face is most visible, blood is seen pouring from his nose and mouth and from under his right eye.
EMS had arrived on the scene slightly after 1 a.m. and the officer was airlifted to UNC Medical Center.
The extent of Sale’s injuries is unclear at this time, but the airlift was appropriate, according to Chief Graham, as there was suspicion that the officer may have suffered a fracture around his eye.
While the video is disturbing, Graham noted that its existence is valuable because it demonstrates the abuse to which many officers are being subject in the current anti-cop climate.
“Today’s society, that’s just how they think and operate. This is something that we, as law enforcement, been telling the public for years. It’s not shocking to us because we been doing this for years.”
Aside from helping illustrate how dangerous policing is, Graham stated that the captured video will serve as all the evidence needed to convict Rogers:
“I’m thankful for the video because it pretty much proves my case for my officer.”
In regard to the suspect, he was later taken into custody and charged with a slew of serious offenses. According to Graham, Rogers was charged with assault with a deadly weapon with intentions to kill while inflicting serious injuries, kidnapping and two counts of resisting a public officer. Rogers is being held at the Robeson County Detention Center.
This is surprisingly not the first time Sale has been attacked on camera. In 2019 when he was with the Maxton Police Department, he was brutally assaulted on camera by a man outside the Minit Shop in Maxton, North Carolina.
In that instance, Sale was ordering a group of people gathered outside the convenience store to disperse when he was attacked by a man in the crowd. As in the recent attack, Sale was left bloodied and bruised from the assault last year.
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Watch: Cuomo’s New York Supreme Court Justice assaults, threatens officer – won’t be charged
Oct. 14, 2020
BUFFALO, NY – An incident that occurred in June involving a New York Supreme Court Justice allegedly assaulting an officer has had more details brought to light, with released bodycam footage showcasing the alleged assault and what lead up to it.
While a decision reached in July resulted in no charges being brought against the justice, the released footage is still hardly flattering.
BREAKING: Body camera footage obtained by the @WKBW I-Team through a FOIL request shows that State Supreme Court Justice Mark Grisanti shoved a police officer in June during a fight with neighbors. https://t.co/BySsYr5HSn
— Charlie Specht (@Charlie_Reports) October 13, 2020
The debacle ensued June 23, when police were notified of a dispute between neighbors that turned into a full-blown physical altercation.
State Supreme Court Justice Mark J. Grisanti and his wife, Maria, had allegedly instigated a fight with their neighbors, the Meles, over a parking spot in front of their home.
Both Mark and Maria Grisanti were allegedly intoxicated, according to Gina Mele, when the couple approached her home and Maria Grisanti began to assault Gina’s husband. Maria allegedly punched Gina’s husband in the eye and bit him on the arm and also bruised Gina Mele’s arm.
Subsequent interviews with the victims did reveal evidence of an assault.
Police were called, which then led to the Grisantis allegedly turning on the officers trying to conduct interviews with witnesses.
While Maria Grisanti lambasted the officers as they conducted their investigation, an officer warned Maria that if she continued to interrupt the investigative process she would be placed in handcuffs. The officer said:
“Ma’am, if you don’t stop yelling, this is gonna be a problem for you.”
Maria Grisanti, as evidenced on video released, did not heed said warning and responded with:
“I don’t care.”
When an officer attempted to place Maria Grisanti into handcuffs, she appears to have resisted, which then led to the officer exerting additional force to take her to the ground.
That’s when Justice Mark Grisanti entered the scene and shoved the arresting officer.
— Charlie Specht (@Charlie_Reports) October 13, 2020
Another officer got involved at that point, tending to Mark Grisanti and instructing him to keep his “hands off a cop.”
Mark Grisanti then instructed the officers to leave his wife alone, and then declared that he has family members in law enforcement:
“You better get off my fucking wife . . . My daughter and my son are both Buffalo police officers . . . I’ll call them right now.”
The justice continued issuing threats of “problems” for the officers if they proceeded to arrest his wife. He stated:
“If you don’t get the cuffs off her right now, you’re gonna have a problem.”
— Dr. Alfant Gomez (@BruceWhitaker14) October 13, 2020
An officer responded, saying “don’t threaten that.” Mark Grisanti proceeded to say that he intended to call the lieutenant who supervises both his daughter and son-in-law at the Buffalo Police Department.
The justice continued name-dropping, saying that Deputy Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia was his cousin and that he has a personal relationship with Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown.
Captain Rinaldo from the BPD reportedly said that Mark Grisanti and Gramaglia are not related.
But the charade of name-dropping had clearly aggravated Officer Richard Hy, who had reached the boiling point with Mark Grisanti trying to intimidate officers with the “do you know who I am?” act.
Officer Hy got in Mark Grisanti’s face and delivered the following speech:
“You wanna drop another copper’s name? You want to scream about you ‘know Gramaglia’ or the mayor? Why don’t you shut the fuck up? You want to say I know all these coppers, I know all these things? You want to make us look dirty? Is that what you want to do?”
And with that, Mark Grisanti was placed in handcuffs and escorted to a police cruiser.
Now while Gramaglia isn’t Mark Grisanti’s cousin, he did manage to have a phone call while cuffed in the cruiser with his real cousin, Det. Mark Costantino.
Constantino was made aware of the allegations against Mark Grisanti assaulting the officer, and calmly asked him:
“They’re saying you pushed an officer. You wouldn’t do that, would ya?”
Mark Grisanti solemnly admitted to what he did to his cousin on the phone:
“I pushed him and I said, ‘Don’t friggin tackle her’ and I pushed him . . . I apologized to him, Mark, right after that because I said, ‘Listen, I respect you guys in law enforcement,’ you know I go, ‘My daughter’s a police officer, my son-in-law’s a police officer, all my family’s police officers.”
More BS from the judge! If you shove a cop you should be arrested!! He has no respect for cops, that’s just a line!!
— UNEDUCATED TJiNY (@TonyinNY) October 14, 2020
Constantino pointed out the obvious in the matter – that this entire debacle is not going to reflect well on Mark Grisanti no matter the outcome due to his role in the courts. He told him:
“I mean, I just . . . the thing that freaks me out is that everything you do is gonna be scrutinized because of your job.”
Mark Grisanti replied:
“Well Mark, I never mentioned anything about my job or who I was, you could ask any officer, I never mentioned anything like that.”
Now, considering all that allegedly took place back in June – the fight with the neighbors, assaulting police and such – not a single charge befell the Grisanti family. But that doesn’t mean Mark Grisanti is out of the woods completely.
Remove him, he’s unfit.
— a245b1 (@_a245b1) July 8, 2020
While Eerie County isn’t pursuing criminal charges in the matter, investigators from the New York State Committee on Judicial Conduct reached out to Gina Mele regarding the incident.
To illustrate the gravity of that outreach, the committee has the power to remove judges.
Grisanti’s attorney, Leonard D. Zaccagnino, commented on that aspect, noting that his client isn’t thrilled about the committee investigating the melee. He said:
“Certainly he’s not happy about it. Certainly he wishes the incident never occurred.”
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