NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — 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.
In this video commentary, Maggie and Tom talk about women in Iran and their rights under Islamic law. Watch the web extra below and learn what women in Iran are required to wear and how both Maggie and Tom got in trouble for breaking the Islamic dress code.
NYC WINTER TOURISM
A new tourism campaign is being launched to help visitors experience New York City in the winter months.
The new campaign from NYC & Company will highlight winter attractions like outdoor ice skating rinks, along with hidden gems around the city and restaurants in far-flung neighborhoods, from Sam’s Soul Food on the Grand Concourse in the Bronx to Zabb Elee, a Michelin-starred Thai restaurant in Jackson Heights, Queens, with a sake bar downstairs.
Tips will be offered online in categories like “Hidden Spaces within Iconic Places” and “Stores with Stories.” A social media campaign is planned in which visitors and New Yorkers can share their insights online.
The city’s hotel rates in January, February and March are typically 22 percent lower than other times of year, according to NYC & Company. Winter visitors can also take advantage of promotions for dining and theater, with NYC Restaurant Week running Jan. 18-Feb. 5 (reservations open Jan. 6) and two-for-one tickets during Broadway Week, Jan. 19-Feb. 5 (tickets on sale Jan. 7).
The tagline for the campaign is “Find a Winter Less Ordinary,” and it’s part of a new year-round strategy of seasonal promotions called “Unlock NYC.” Details at http://www.nycgo.com/unlock .
UNIQUE VIDEO DISPLAY ON THE NATIONAL MALL
Three nights of outdoor events called “Commemorate and Celebrate Freedom” are planned in Washington D.C., on the National Mall, on the evenings of Nov. 16-18.
Each of the three nights, video projections will illuminate the facades of the National Museum of African and American History and Culture, which is expected to open in the fall of 2016. On the evening of Nov. 18, the program will include live readings of poems and other works, and a concert by the gospel and R&B singer BeBe Winans.
The event pays tribute to anniversaries of three milestones in African-American history: ratification of the 13th Amendment, which abolished slavery, and the end of the Civil War, 150 years ago in 1865; and the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act.
Digital projection imagery will turn the south facade of the building (facing Madison Drive) and the west facade (facing 15th Street and the Washington Monument) into a five-story, block-long canvas. The video display will be seven minutes long and will run continuously all three nights, from 5:30 p.m.-9 p.m. The display will include historic images related to slavery, abolition and Reconstruction, the Civil War and the civil rights era. Best place to view the video will be from the mound area of the Washington Monument and the knoll area adjacent to Madison Drive, at the corner of 14th Street.
Details at http://nmaahc.si.edu/content/pdf/Newsroom/Projection—Mapping—Nov16—Event—release—102815.pdf .
LONELY PLANET LAUNCHES US MAGAZINE
The guidebook publisher Lonely Planet is launching its first U.S. magazine.
The issue highlights the top places in Lonely Planet’s just-published book, “Best in Travel 2016.” The “Best in Travel” lists include top 10 countries (Botswana, Japan, U.S., Palau, Latvia, Australia, Poland, Uruguay, Greenland and Fiji), and best value destinations (Estonia, Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, East Africa, New Mexico, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Spain’s Galicia, Quebec City in Canada, Costa Rica’s Caribbean Coast, East Timor and Western Australia).
Other features range from tips for taking better videos to dining in Nashville (with Big Al’s Deli, Martin’s BBQ Joint and The Treehouse on the list) to “10 new ways to fall in love with Rome,” with recommendations for cycling the Appian Way and swimming in the Foro Italico sports complex.
The new quarterly travel magazine retails for $5.99 at bookstores, Whole Foods and other outlets. Digital editions are also available.
With the launch of the U.S. publication, Lonely Planet now publishes magazines in 12 countries. The U.S. magazine is launching with a distribution of 650,000 and is created by an in-house team out of Lonely Planet’s U.S. offices in Tennessee.
The third GOP debate took place at the University of Colorado Boulder. Republican presidential candidates took the stage to address important issues like the economy, jobs and taxes.
In this behind-the-scenes video commentary, Maggie talks about her experience as a woman reporting from Iran — a Muslim country and very specific laws about women. From choosing her outfits to learning how to wear the hijab, to interacting with men in public, Maggie shares her challenges as well as the things she learned.
How well do you know the world’s most famous landmarks? From France to Japan, Channel One News reporters traveled to some of the coolest destinations across the globe to bring you these fun video quizzes — watch and check if you can guess the places and landmarks — and to learn some fascinating facts about each one along the way!