A police brutality case in Towanda, PA that became public in 2012 shocked the nation. The nature of the police brutality was worse than the Rodney King beating that outraged the public, but the public has been much less vocal over the Robert Leone beating thus far.
The Robert Leone Beating was recorded by the troopers own dash cam.
Public Safety Takes an Ugly Turn in Robert Leone’s Case
The question I see is this: is it more dangerous to society to have a citizen that fails to pull over immediately when followed at a low speed by officers or to have state troopers willing to beat someone mercilessly for failing to pull over? What if one officer climbs up on a car and jumps on the suspect and if another breaks his finger punching the suspect in the skull while he’s laying motionless on the ground? Take him out of the hospital to further beat him twice? Trump up false charges to hide their own foul actions? This seems to be the scenario in Robert Leone’s case according to the video from the police dash cam, medical records, documented evidence.
I don’t know about you, but to me I would rather take my chances with the guy who failed to pull over after not breaking any laws than a cop (in this case a group of cops, who are willing to beat someone mercilessly after they are already in handcuffs and lying on the ground). The officers involved were not disciplined (and have since been promoted) and the victim of the brutal beating was sent to jail for 2.5 years.
Mr. Leone Taken To Hospital 3 Separate Times – Once Unconscious
Last year The Daily Unconstitutional reported on the apparent police brutality case of Robert Leone. While driving near Towanda, PA, Leone realized he was being followed by an officer with flashing lights. He misread the situation and decided the officer wanted to go around him so he slowed down instead of pulling over. After failing to stop when an officer attempted to pull him over, another official car blocked the road and they pulled Mr. Leone out of the car.
Video footage showed law enforcement officials apparently beating Robert Leone who was laying flat on the ground. One officer climbed on top of a car and jumped onto Mr. Leone and another officer broke his finger punching Mr. Leone in the skull.
An ambulance was called for Mr. Leone, but instead the officer with a broken finger took the ambulance, leaving Mr. Leone on the scene. The details of what happened over the next few hours are not entirely clear, but it is clear that Mr. Leone was taken to the hospital on three separate occasions over the next several hours, each time in a worse state of health than he was before and the last time unconscious. It was reported that he attempted to complain to hospital staff about being beaten and he was checked out of the hospital to be beaten further.
PA Highway Patrol Has a Long History of Corruption and Abuse
The news is brimming with incidents of illegal and improper conduct of official officers in PA. “Over 150 Pennsylvania State Troopers Have Been Arrested Since 1994” and “Despite three separate incidents in February involving disgraced Pennsylvania state troopers, the public outrage has been minimal.” according to www.copblock.org. State troopers in Pennsylvania have been found guilty of everything from obstructing a child molestation case to criminal solicitation to rape (code for soliciting a minor) to being involved in an arson plot to many DUI’s.
After serving more than 2½ years of a 16-to-48-month jail sentence stemming from four misdemeanor convictions at a 2010 jury trial, Leone was released last month from Bradford County jail and into parole supervision.
Leone was granted parole on March 16, 2012 — before the video of his arrest was made public — but remained incarcerated until he submitted an approved home plan to Pennsylvania officials.
If Officials Are Not Punished For Abuse, Incidence Will Continue to Increase
None of the officers involved in Leone’s beating were disciplined in any way for this incident and, in fact, since that time some have received pay raises. Pennsylvania State Police spokeswoman declined to discuss the results of an internal investigation into the incident.
In March, Leone filed a federal lawsuit against against the Pennsylvania State Police and the troopers allegedly involved in the incident. The defendants denied the allegations against them in a legal document filed in July 2012.
The release of the video in June attracted national and international media attention, and in its wake, many in northern Pennsylvania called for an official probe into the behavior of the police involved and for Leone to be freed from incarceration.
Robert Leone Abuse Case and Official Retribution
He was there on four misdemeanor charges: accident involving damage to attended vehicle; fleeing or attempting to elude an officer; simple assault; and resisting arrest. However, documents show the “resisting arrest” charge against Leone stemmed from a broken pinkie finger suffered by an officer who punched Leone in the head while Leone was laying on the ground handcuffed and immobile.
The troopers dash cam seems to show the damage to the vehicle was from an officer swerving in front of him to block him during the low-speed “chase” and we’ve already covered the “resisting arrest” charge. The other charges are similarly unsubstantiated by the video tape.
In other words, the state troopers involved wanted to make Leone look as bad as possible in court so they charged him with things that they themselves were guilty of causing just to get a conviction. It worked. Congrats PA State troopers and thanks for all your hard work.