2010-10-08 / Top Stories

Brutally Beaten By Cops In ER

By Nicholas Briano

Michael Billings, 17, claims cops used excessive force at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital. Michael Billings, 17, claims cops used excessive force at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital. A Far Rockaway teenager says he was brutally beaten by 101 Precinct police inside the emergency room of St. John’s Episcopal Hospital after an altercation with authorities last Saturday night.

Michael Billings, 17, was outside his Mott Avenue home early Saturday morning when he says he witnessed a friend get into a fight in which the friend was stabbed. Billings rushed the unknown friend to the hospital where they awaited his medical attention.

However, the emergency room quickly filled up with the injured party’s family and friends, causing police to respond to try to break up the crowd. Hostilities quickly heightened when Billings said he refused to leave because he wanted to stay with his injured friend.

“I brought my friend to the hospital who got stabbed,” Billings said. “The cop and I got into an altercation and before I know it there was at least ten cops attacking me.”

It was after refusing to leave that Billings alleges he was hit by the police officer and then ganged up on. According to accounts, the cop punched and kicked him, and threw his bloody face against the wall causing him to lose two teeth.

“My face was bleeding so bad that when they threw me against the wall the face print was imprinted on the wall.”

Police, he said, then threw him outside and still continued to pound on his defenseless body.

Billings’s older sister, Nicole, was at the scene and says she was terrified for her brother.

“I felt like they wanted to kill him,” she said. “If they continued I thought he was going to die.”

Billings was eventually arrested and charged with second degree assault and resisting arrest. A subsequent search of Billings led to an additional charge of marijuana possession.

Billings’s bloody face can be seen on the wall of the emergency room at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital. Billings’s bloody face can be seen on the wall of the emergency room at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital. According to court papers, Billings punched the cop first after becoming what police described as “irate.” The papers did not say why Billings became irate, but only that he allegedly punched and kicked the arresting officer.

Billings then, according to police accounts, resisted arrest and continued to flail his arms and began rolling on the floor.

However, Billings and several witnesses that night say his face and body would suggest more than flailing and rolling.

“Police didn’t understand that I was upset because my friend was stabbed, and the police are trying to force me out of the hospital, I was the one who brought him there in the first place.”

“First they sprayed mace at me and then smashed my face against the wall,” he continued. “I am bruised everywhere, my face is swollen, I lost two teeth, and I have headaches every day. The cops were even laughing at blood on the wall.”

Billings was treated at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital and then arraigned at Queens Criminal Court, where he was released on his own recognizance. He is due back in court later this month.

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