A Schenectady, NY police lieutenant was not arrested or fired even though he brutally attacked an innocent handcuffed woman.
Officer Mark McCracken smashed in her head, then lied on his report, claiming she attacked him. He also took a picture of her split open head so he could brag about it to his friends and fellow cops.
“This is what happens when someone hits one of my men,”McCracken reportedly said as he showed off his trophy photo, bragging about savagely beating a handcuffed woman having an emotional breakdown.
The proposed settlement of the excessive force lawsuit filed by a woman against the city and McCracken was unanimously approved Monday by the City Council’s Claims Committee, reported The Daily Gazette.
Chairman of the committee, Councilman Vince Riggi, would only say the proposed settlement is “It’s a lot of money.”
The full council is expected to vote on the proposed settlement at its meeting Oct. 9.
The lawsuit was brought by Nicola Cottone against the city in September 2017 for violating her rights, as well as assault and battery.
The police department investigation found in March that McCracken used excessive force when causing the large head wound to his handcuffed victim. The department also admitted the officer took a picture to show off to other cops, according to a report by recently retired Lt. Edward Barbagelata. The report also noted McCracken said “This is what happens when someone hits one of my men,” while showing off his photo.
The Times Union reported on the police assault occurred while she was handcuffed:
Two cameras that captured footage of the incident did not have an audio feed. One of the tapes showed her acting agitated and talking constantly to officers who were in and out of the room where she was sitting on a bench.
That video also showed two officers rush toward Cottone who stood up as the officers grabbed her, lifted her up and then slammed her onto the bench. Blood streamed down the bench and onto the floor of the room as the officers quickly lifted Cottone and dragged her to the doorway, where she was placed on the floor of a hallway for more than 20 minutes. Several officers looked on as the incident unfolded.
Police lied on the report and charged their victim with harassment, but once prosecutors saw the video evidence, the egregious harassment charge against Cottone was dropped.
“We didn’t think there was any cause to charge her in the first place,” Schenectady County District Attorney Robert Carney said. “I reviewed the videotape … and I believe there was no cause to believe that she had committed the charge of harassment by kicking an officer.”
For viciously attacking an innocent handcuffed woman, McCracken received a 5 day unpaid suspension.
He was later demoted from Lieutenant to patrol officer, but the police department did not say if that was for this offense. McCracken was also facing a criminal contempt charge for violating an order of custody and visitation when he came into “close physical proximity” with his soon-to-be ex-wife on Jan 7.