Group claims civil rights were violated in Kiryas Joel

Posted: Updated:

A group of friends from Manhattan say their civil rights were violated during a confrontation with a Kiryas Joel public safety officer.

John Zwinck says the incident, which was allegedly captured on video, began when Kiryas Joel Public Safety Director Moses Witrol confronted the group on Sunday and asked for identification because they looked "suspicious."

State police in Monroe say they were called to Kiryas Joel after the group refused to show Witrol any identification. Police say Witrol claimed they were taking pictures of schools and government buildings.

Zwinck says they were only taking pictures of each other.

State police says the group was eventually let go and wasn't charged.

Calls placed by News 12 Hudson Valley to the Village of Kiryas Joel were not returned.

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