Two off-duty NYPD Officers Michelle Anglin, 37, and Koleen Robinson, 24, were charged with assault, gang assault and criminal possession of a weapon for a road rage incident that resulted in the beating of driver Marion Smith. The incident began in true New York tradition with two driver’s screaming profanities at each other — but the police officers proceeded to pistol-whip Smith for his insults. They then allegedly fled the scene.
The incident began when Smith, 35, had pulled up alongside Robinson’s black Suburban. Smith’s driver’s side car door was wide open and one of the officers yelled “Close the door, you f—— a——!” when it came close to scraping Robinson’s SUV. Smith responded in the customary New York fashion, yelling “You are a f—— b—-!” That is when it went from bad to worse.
Robinson and Anglin jumped out as Smith tried to close his doors. Anglin hit him with pepper spray. When he tried to grab her or the pepper spray, Robinson hit him. A witness tried to break up the fight, but Smith screamed, “Do you know who you are f—— with? We are the police!” Not for long it seems.
They ended up tumbling to the ground where Robinson beat him in the head with her baton. When Smith grabbed the baton, Anglin pistol-whipped him and Smith said that one of the women then pointed a gun in his face. He required 25 staples to close the gash in his head.
Smith sounds like no gem himself, but these officers are not likely to survive this trial with their badges or their liberty. The problem is that they were allegedly the aggressors and quickly escalated the violence. Moreover, pistol-whipping violates a host of regulations for a police department — even when force is justified. They could have just as easily shot a bystander by mistake in such a move. The question is whether Smith will sue civilly in tort, which seems likely.