All of the police officers charged in the Michael Mineo trial have been acquitted. The cops were said to have sodomized, or covered up the sodomization of, the tattoo parlor employee in Brooklyn in October of 2008, using what was originally described as a police radio antenna, then as a police baton.
Officer Richard Kern had been charged with wielding the stick, and Officers Officers Alex Cruz and Andrew Morales with concealing his actions from authorities.Though the press has been skeptical of Mineo’s claims, he had the supporting testimony of Officer Kevin Maloney at the grand jury hearing and at trial.
Defense lawyers provided experts who testified that the hole in Mineo’s underwear, and the wounds to his anus, did not match the alleged victim’s description of events.
The jury phase of the trial was troubled, with jurors requesting readbacks of information and one juror replaced at the last minute for “disseminating inaccurate information” among the other members, according to defense counsel.
At the conclusion of arguments, Mineo had said, “I feel confident, but there’s always that ‘what if.’ ” Mineo had been fleeing cops who caught him smoking weed when they caught up with him and the incident allegedly took place.
We expect this bodes ill for Mineo’s multimillion-dollar civil suit against the city, and for Officer Maloney’s career on the force.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on February 22, 2010