A man in Newark was arrested for assaulting a police officer and possession of heroin. His attorney Brooke Barnett accused the officers of planting heroin on the man to justify assaulting him. The accused is named Darnell Reed, 30. The incident took place on April 1st, 2013. At the trial, disputing the police officer’s claims, Barnett said that their story made no sense and that they had abused their power. He further said that they had later added evidence to clean up their mess.
“Just because they say it’s so doesn’t mean that it’s so,” Barnett added. However, the Essex County Assistant Prosecutor Justin Edwab discarded Barnett’s assertions as a conspiracy theory, suggesting that the officers were telling the truth. Edwab was adamant that the incident took place exactly as the police officers were saying. He went on to say, “They tell you that they struck him, and they told you they had to use whatever force they could to prevent him from getting that gun.”
This is how Edwab reiterated the incident. He said that the police officers Louis Weber and Manuel Soto Jr. found Reed conversing near his vehicle at 11.30 am. After a verbal warning about police in the area, Reed started to drive away and the officers followed. In pursuit, the police officers turned the lights of the car on and activated the sirens. Reed pulled his car to the corner.
Weber explained that as Soto approached the car from the side of the passenger seat, he noticed a package in Reed’s hand that contained fifty folds of heroin. Following the notification, Soto ordered Reed to get out of the vehicle. Reed exited the vehicle, pushed Soto, dropped the heroin and began to tried to leave the scene. A struggle followed between the accused and the officers in which Reed allegedly grabbed at Weber’s gun, which he couldn’t get a hold of, since the safety mechanism on his holster prevented him from doing so.
According to Weber, Reed was eventually tackled to the ground and handcuffed suffering some minor injuries. Barnett however noted that some of Reed’s dreadlocks were ripped from his scalp.