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Attorneys for suspended RPD officers discuss Prude case

Defense attorney James Nobles Photo: News10NBC. Defense attorney James Nobles

Berkeley Brean
Updated: October 01, 2020 05:37 PM
Created: September 30, 2020 11:23 AM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — The lawyers for the Rochester police officers suspended over the death of Daniel Prude spoke publicly for the first time on Thursday.

They said, so far, only one view of the events surrounding Prude‘s death has been publicized and they wanted to show the side of the police officers.

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The lawyers representing the RPD officers, who are currently suspended with pay, say the officers have been treated unfairly. According to lawyers, the officers involved in the incident on March 23 followed their training.

During the conference, a video was shown depicting part of the training that officers go through. It showed how police restrain a person on the ground, including putting their hands on the person’s head area in a tripod stance. The lawyers say this is what the police officers did to Prude that morning.

They also addressed criticism of putting the spit sock over his head and the lawyer for Officer Mark Vaughn illustrated what that spit sock is like.

As the conference was going on, members of Free The People Roc gathered outside the building in protest.

News10NBC cameras saw three people put in handcuffs by Rochester police. One person handcuffed was former City School Board member Mary Adams and demonstrators say a 14-year-old girl was also handcuffed.

News10NBC is going to ask RPD why these people were handcuffed and if there will be any charges.

The lawyers also provided information about officer training. News10NBC’s Chief Investigative Reporter Berkeley Brean is going to review that this afternoon and, at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m., you can hear his questions to the attorneys including why there appeared to be a lack of compassion toward Prude in the body camera videos.

Previously, the attorney representing the Prude family, Elliot Shields, said this is a case of excessive force.

“And we need an answer to that because anyone that watches the video can see if that's appropriate, if that's consistent with their training, then we need a complete top-to-bottom reform in the Rochester Police Department,” Shields said.

Watch the full conference in the video player below (mobile users, click here):

For full coverage on the death of Daniel Prude, click here.


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