Locals call out for investigation into police brutality

Community members and lawmakers are calling for a full-blown investigation over a brutality allegation made against a Yonkers police officer.

The incident was caught on camera and shows Yonkers Police Officer Wayne Simoes slamming 44-year-old Irma Marquez into the ground face first at la Fonda Restaurant. The footage was taken last year, but was just released Friday.

The community is outraged, saying nothing could warrant an officer treating anyone the way Marquez was treated. Marquez suffered a fractured jaw, a concussion, two black eyes and bruises all over her body resulting from the incident.

Police claim Marquez physically blocked police officers from rendering aid to Marquez?s niece, who had been injured at a fight in a bar. Marquez was arrested and charged with getting in the way of police. However, a jury acquitted her of all charges on May 9.

Simoes was interviewed by News 12 Westchester in 2002 after he was honored for reducing crime. Now, after the alleged brutality incident, some Yonkers residents are calling for police to undergo sensitivity training.

Councilman Liam McLaughlin told News 12 Westchester in a statement that he would like to see everything that led up to the events shown in the video. McLaughlin is one of the lawmakers in favor of a full-blown investigation into the incident.

Several community groups are planning a big rally in response to the tape. The rally will be held Sunday morning.

An internal investigation cleared Simoes of any wrongdoing, and Yonkers police say he still has his job working at the 4th Precinct. The police department had no comment about the situation.

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