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Police, prosecutors clash after DA charges New Rochelle detective with attempted assault

Police and prosecutors are clashing after Westchester District Attorney Mimi Rocah charged a New Rochelle detective with attempted assault for an incident involving alleged excessive use of force this past February.

News 12 Staff

Jun 23, 2021, 2:43 AM

Updated 1,093 days ago

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Police and prosecutors are clashing after Westchester District Attorney Mimi Rocah charged a New Rochelle detective with attempted assault for an incident involving alleged excessive use of force this past February.
Officer Michael Vaccaro was off duty on Feb. 15 when he saw the suspect threatening his elderly mom.
Following a chase, Vaccaro is accused of punching and kicking the suspect repeatedly before pressing the suspect's face into the ground even though responding officers already had the suspect in custody.
Affiliated Police Associations of Westchester President Keith Olson, who represents more than 4,000 officers in the county, says Rocah's decision is unjust and unfairly targets Vaccaro. Olson says Vaccaro was justified after the suspect ignored police commands and attempted to punch him.
"I've watched the video; you know they claim to have done a full investigation, but I don't think that's possible. I think this is nothing more than a politically motivated decision," says Olson.
In response, the DA's office sent News 12 the complaint against Vaccaro, which describes the detective's actions that day including an admission that he hit the suspect.


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