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Trial Starts For NYC Cop Caught Body-Checking Cyclist On Video

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Officer Patrick Pogan, pictured above, heads into court this week to face charges related to a 2008 assault of a Critical Mass rider.
Officer Patrick Pogan, pictured above, heads into court this week to face charges related to a 2008 assault of a Critical Mass rider. Photo: Jefferson Siegel

According to a report in the New York Times, a trial is now underway for a NYC police officer who body-checked a cyclist during critical mass in July of 2008.

Patrick Pogan, 24, who has since resigned from the NYPD, stands charged with assault and falsifying documents, after allegedly body-checking a cyclist during critical mass, then signing and submitting a false report of the incident.  A video of the assault, which is shown after the break, surfaced after a tourist uploaded it to YouTube, and it became clear that what Mr. Pogan had written in his report of the incident was a far cry from what actually happened. After an investigation into the matter, the district attorney dropped charges against the cyclist and brought assault charges against Pogan, who had been on the force just 11 days at the time of the incident. He was assigned to desk duty and resigned shortly thereafter.

The cyclist in the case, Christopher Long, says he was doing nothing wrong, and Pogan seemingly randomly selected him to tackle. Long was initially charged with counts of resisting arrest, attempted assault, and disorderly conduct, but those charges were quickly dropped when the prosecutor began to investigate the case.

The chilling video shows Pogan, who seems to hone in on Long as he approaches, standing in the middle of the street with another officer before slowly stepping to his right as he keeps his eyes on the cyclist. The officer is almost able to force Long off the road as he approaches, but with enough room for Long to slip by, Pogan decides to body-check the cyclist to keep him from getting away, knocking him off his bike in a rather spectacular fashion.

Pogan faces up to four years in prison if he is convicted and sentenced to the maximum punishment for all the charges against him. Is four years enough for an incident like this? Were Critical Mass riders asking for confrontation? Watch the video after the break and tell us what you think.

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kcr
kcr
14 years ago

The cop should go to jail, no question. Please keep us updated!

CM
CM
14 years ago

Abuse of power for a proffessional police officer should mean a jail term or it will set a precedent, hope he gets the max 4 years. If the cyclist hit his head as he doesn’t seem to be wearing a helmet this could have been much worse. Hope he’s ok and back on the bike.

Steve
Steve
14 years ago

The cop is a moron and recieve some time… But I think the critical mass movement is quite silly and at its worst dangerous to the world of cycling. Many (not all) critical mass riders come off as self-important d-bags that have nothing better to do with their time then to piss people off. I know that here in NYC, Critical mass has been responsible for legislation limiting the number of cyclists allowed to ride together. I think the “movement” does more harm than good.

Major Taylor
14 years ago

I’ll be extremely surprised if he is found guilty of anything. Even more so, if he is found guilty and sentenced to anything more than a small fine or community service.

Spencer
Spencer
14 years ago

Attention critical mass idiots; assembling in the middle of the road only leads motorists to believe that all cyclists are reckless, skill-free, girlpant-wearing, fashion-over-function morons. That cop was wrong, but reflective of most people.

Anthony
14 years ago

It’s nice that somethings actually happening with this case. When I first saw the video I figured it would never go anywhere. Thank God someone was filming, cyclists get assaulted way to often. It makes me sad.

Marcus
Marcus
13 years ago

While the cop was wrong in knocking the guy down, anyone who’s dealt with the CM idiots knows what a bunch of idiots they are. Thinking there really is safety in numbers, they ride their bicycles in a large group, blocking traffic on city streets to protest… well, I’m not sure exactly what, since female rider I asked that very question here in my own town couldn’t even give me a straight answer. It went from “um, it’s about sharing the road” to “well, uh, it’s about using alternative forms of transportation” to “we’re just pissed at the world for no real reason and like to give people who drive cars the finger and hope none of them floor the accelerator and run ten or twenty of us over, thereby cleansing the gene pool somewhat”. Okay, I made that last one up. But I did recognize one of the riders as a co-worker of mine… and I’m a delivery driver. Hypocrisy truly knows no bounds. Oh, and these d-bags, so loyal to their cause, gave up their bike-riding protests the second their “leader” graduated from college. As soon as he left town, they were never seen again. Way to stand up for something, guys.

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