Paterson Police Officer Indicted on Civil Rights Violations and Obstruction
NEWARK, N.J. – A Paterson Police officer was indicted today for physically assaulting a victim and then attempting to cover it up, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.
Kevin Patino, 29, of Paterson, New Jersey, is charged by indictment with one count of conspiracy against rights by depriving a man of his constitutional right to be free from the use of unreasonable force by law enforcement officers, one count of deprivation of rights under color of law and two counts of falsification of records in connection with that incident.
According to documents filed in this case:
At approximately 12:30 a.m. on Dec. 14, 2020, Patino and a conspirator approached the victim, who was walking with his hands in his pockets in Paterson. Patino grabbed the victim. When the victim attempted to separate himself, Patino struck the victim in the face and body numerous times. During the altercation with victim, the conspirator picked the victim up and threw him to the ground. Patino then repeatedly struck the victim while he was on the ground.
Patino filed police reports, which contained numerous false statements and omissions, regarding the arrest of the victim.
The violation of civil rights and conspiracy to violate civil rights charges each carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. The false records counts each carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. The maximum fine for each of the charges is $250,000.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent In Charge George M. Crouch Jr. in Newark; the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office; under the direction of acting Attorney General Andrew J. Bruck; the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Camelia M. Valdes; and the North Jersey Public Corruption Task Force composed of members of FBI and New Jersey State Police.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Gribko.
The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.