PATERSON, N.J. — One surveillance video obtained by PIX11 has unleashed a new conversation about police brutality, excessive use of force and other allegations by several people in Paterson.
PIX11 aired that video Monday night, showing two Paterson police officers — Kendry Tineo and Kevin Patino — punching Osamah Alsaidi.
By Tuesday, another person came forward with accusations of police brutality against Patino.
And on Friday, a third person — Desyiah Leak — made similar allegations against Tineo, accusing the plainclothes officer of assaulting her during a December traffic stop.
“Officer Tineo came to my driver’s side very aggressive. He did not ask me for license, registration, insurance, so what was the reason for getting out of the car? He asked me a third time, get out of the car, and I told him no. He then drawed his fists up, and he punched me through my window on the left side of my face,” said Leak.
Leak does not have any video of her encounter with Tineo.
But, similar to Alsaidi’s case, her account of what happened is night and day from what appears in the criminal complaint, which accuses Leak of making terroristic threats, and striking Tineo in the face with a bladed fist.
Civil Trial Attorney Diego Navas now represents both Alsaidi and Leak.
"The officer writes that my client was the one who initiated physicality by throwing a punch from a seated position — inside her vehicle? Up at the officer?" Navas said questioning the account.
When asked what made her decided to come forward now, Leak said it was because she knew Alsaidi's emotions all too well.
"Well, someone had sent me Osamah’s article, and all I could think of when he mentioned the officer’s name, I immediately shared his post," Leak said. "It just, it got me emotional all over again because, I remember going through the same exact phase, and there was no reason for that to happen."
Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh’s office did not get back to us for comment in time for this report.
But we did reach Tineo’s defense attorney, Pat Caserta, who said he was just retained and has not met with his client or analyzed the case documents.
Still, he offered this:
“I recognize the need for transparency," he said. "We welcome further investigation into the citizen’s allegations. We’re confident they will be investigated thoroughly and the truth will be revealed.”
Caserta said he has yet to have any meaningful conversations with the Passaic County Prosecutors Office, New Jersey Attorney General’s Office, or the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Newark, which he said are all jointly investigating this matter.