Dashcam Video Shows Police Lied To Get Innocent Man Convicted, Officers Now Facing Prison Time

"They accused Mr. Jeter of criminal acts that led to him being charged and indicted," assistant prosecutor Berta Rodriguez, who tried the case, said Thursday. "He was facing five years in prison. But for the dash camera in the second police vehicle, he might be in prison today."
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    Bloomfield, N.J., police officers were indicted after a cop car dashboard camera showed they used violence in falsely arresting Marcus Jeter.

    Bloomfield, N.J., police officers were indicted after a cop car dashboard camera showed they used violence in falsely arresting Marcus Jeter.

    NEWARK, N.J.  — Two police officers who accused a motorist of trying to grab one of their guns were convicted Thursday of misconduct in part because a dashcam video showed the motorist holding his hands up.

    Bloomfield Officers Sean Courter and Orlando Trinidad were found guilty by an Essex County jury of conspiracy, official misconduct, tampering with and falsifying public records and lying to authorities. Courter, 35, and Trinidad, 34, face mandatory minimum prison sentences of five years when they’re sentenced in January.

    Courter, of Englishtown, and Trinidad, of Bloomfield, initially said motorist Marcus Jeter tried to grab Courter’s gun and struck Trinidad during a traffic stop on the Garden State Parkway in 2012. Jeter was charged with resisting arrest, aggravated assault and other offenses based on video from one of the officers’ dashboard cameras.



    But Jeter acquired a second police dashcam video through an open records request. Combined, the videos showed him with his hands in the air for virtually the entire encounter.

    Prosecutors dropped charges against Jeter and charged Trinidad, Courter and a third officer.

    “They accused Mr. Jeter of criminal acts that led to him being charged and indicted,” assistant prosecutor Berta Rodriguez, who tried the case, said Thursday. “He was facing five years in prison. But for the dash camera in the second police vehicle, he might be in prison today.”

    The third officer, Albert Sutterlin, pleaded guilty in 2013 to falsifying and tampering with records.

    Courter’s attorney Charles Clark told The Star-Ledger that he disagreed with the verdict and was “100 percent convinced” the officers were innocent.

    According to prosecutors, Courter followed Jeter onto the parkway after Jeter voluntarily left his home following a verbal dispute with his girlfriend.

    Jeter refused to get out of his car when Courter stopped him, and Courter and Trinidad, who struck the front of Jeter’s car when he arrived, broke one of the car’s windows and dragged Jeter from the car, prosecutors said.

    Watch dash cam video clears NJ man; cops now indicted:

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    • DKBNYC

      Bloomfield officers convicted in ‘dashcam’ case

    • MarlboroStan

      I find it hard to believe the prosecutors didn’t know about the second video.

      • TeeJae

        That’s because they probably did. It’s called withholding evidence. Happens all the time in our so-called “justice” system.

      • BlamePoliticiansNotAParty

        They hard the video from Courter’s car. In that video, you can clearly see Trinidad collide with Jeter’s vehicle. Department policy states that any time a collision occurs, it MUST be reported, a drug test MUST be given and the officer cannot be on the road until the results come in. I don’t think the prosecutor ever looked at the first tape. He read the report and the filed the charges against Jeter.

    • Boba Vette

      Wow, Leo’s lying!!! Well that can’t be can it?!?! Leo’s are sworn to never lie under oath……

    • MountainMan23

      It’s called “testi-lying” and it’s so common no judge should take the word of any police officer when the charges include resisting arrest and/or assaulting a police officer. Those charges are typically brought against victims of police brutality, and should never result in a conviction unless there is adequate physical evidence – video, verifiable hospital records of wounds to the officer(s), or the like – to convict.

      • TeeJae

        Yup. Those charges have become so standard they’re probably pre-typed on police reports.

    • GALT

      Looks like 3 “doughnut patrol” officers on scene who
      couldn’t pass a physical or a psych exam…..and the ada
      who was prosecuting should have been the one to “uncover”
      what seems from this report to be “supressed” evidence.
      Ethical canons ( the LAW ) require both judges and prosecutors
      to seek “justice” before conviction, of course we ( the people )
      should know by now that……nothing is what it seems.

      “WE ( the people ) OUTRANK YOU ( every elected and employed
      government official ) ……DO YOUR JOB!!!!!!!!”