A Bronx man who was arrested last spring for an alleged robbery claims that police railroaded him and lied about the circumstances of his brutal arrest. Raymond Romero, 21, told the News that cops pushed him onto the ground, broke his pinkie finger, and repeatedly punched and Tasered him on April 1st in front of Versatile barbershop on E. 163rd Street. You can see video of the altercation below.
Police were looking for a robber at the time and say Romero fit the description; Romero claims cops told him they were looking for an armed robber in a green hoodie (he was wearing a blue one that night). Arresting officer Jose Reyes says Romero fit the description, and that he "observed (Romero) to have his hands inside of his pants’ pockets, and ordered (him) to remove his hands from his pockets." Reyes said in court papers that Romero "began yelling... 'No, I’m not f------ taking my hands out of my pocket.'"
But as you can see in the video, both of Romero's hands were clearly outside of his hoodie by the time cops approached him. The News writes that at one point, Reyes can be see grabbing Romero around the neck of his hoodie and pushing him into a storefront. It appears that Romero fights back, or at least puts his hand on the officer, which could arguably be construed as resisting arrest—this then leads to several other cops pouncing on him.
But Romero contends that cops lied in their report on the incident. "The police officer clearly lied. Let the officer explain that," Romero’s lawyer, Alexander Sanchez, told the News. Romero, who has been locked up ever since, says he was also beaten and Tasered at the police station that night.
As for why he's been locked up this whole time:
His bad luck only got worse when he went to court. A judge ordered Romero held without bail because he violated terms of a February 2013 plea bargain on a drug-dealing case — by getting rearrested.