A Florida police officer who threatened and shoved a black woman after she called for help faces jail time after being convicted by a jury on Thursday.
Former Miami-Dade police officer Alejandro Giraldo was arrested in May 2019 after prosecutors discovered he lied on arrest and incident reports. He was found guilty of assault and battery and official misconduct.
“Police can get hold of people to make a lawful arrest. If the arrest is unlawful, they have no more rights than the rest of us,” Miami-Dade County District Attorney Tim VanderGiesen said. mentioned. “And he certainly can’t tackle her to the ground.”
Dyma Loving called Miami-Dade County police on March 5, 2019 and reported that a neighbor had pointed a shotgun at her and a friend and threatened to kill them.
He also allegedly hurled sexist and racist insults at the two women. Police body camera footage shows Giraldo was accused of loving when she raised her voice and urged officers to arrest the shooter. He then pushed Loving over the fence and then pulled her to the ground by her neck.
VanderGiesen said the officer was “offended” because the women told him to do his job. Loving was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. The charges were later dropped. The police did not arrest the neighbor until a few days later, after the video was released.
“You all have to do something,” Loving said.
“Oh, you need to relax,” Giraldo said.
“I just asked if I could go next door and call my kids,” said Loving, a mother of three.
“You have to relax because now you are going to be arrested. You are messy right now,” Giraldo said.
At one point, Giraldo said Loving “must be Baker Acted”. Florida’s Baker Act permits the involuntary mental evaluation of a person who appears to be harming themselves or someone else.
Giraldo wrote in his report that Loving didn’t follow his orders and was “causing a scene.” The officer’s attorney added that the women were ‘pissed off’ and ‘out of control’ but Giraldo was simply doing his job despite his extinguished ‘bedside manner’.
Three other officers who responded gave statements concluding that Loving did not use words or actions that constituted a threat.
“Yes, I was screaming, but my adrenaline was rising – I almost lost my life”, Aime Told reporters after the incident. “I never threatened anyone. I was just begging to talk to my kids.
Loving filed a civil rights lawsuit against the Miami-Dade Police Department, Giraldo and another officer.
Giraldo faces up to five years in prison for the official misconduct charge, a third-degree felony.
“We are disappointed,” said Giraldo’s lawyer André Rouvière. “We thought we had established that they couldn’t prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt. I guess the jury saw it a different way. We have to accept the jury’s verdict.