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Bridgeport must rehire cop who allegedly struck a victim with a flashlight, according to judge

Bridgeport Police Department
Bridgeport Police Department

The city of Bridgeport, Connecticut, must rehire a police officer it previously terminated for use of excessive force, according to a ruling made by a Superior Court judge on Wednesday.

According to the Connecticut Post, Officer Michael Stanitis was fired by the city’s police commission in October of 2020 after he allegedly was caught on video striking a person with a flashlight.

The city agreed to a settlement of $342,000 paid to the victim Carmelo Mendez.

An arbitrator assigned to Officer Stanitis’ appeal found that the video was not clear enough to identify the officer. In addition to rehiring the officer, the city will also be required to provide him with back pay.

John is a former news fellow with WSHU Public Radio.
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