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Schenectady Police Chief Asks For Patience As Investigation Into Arrest Continues

Schenectady Police Chief Eric Clifford
Lucas Willard
/
WAMC
Schenectady Police Chief Eric Clifford (file photo)

The Chief of the Schenectady Police Department is urging patience as authorities continue their investigation into a Monday incident where it appeared an officer placed his knee on a man's neck while making an arrest.  

Yugeshwar Gaindarpersaud
Credit Lucas Willard / WAMC
/
WAMC
Yugeshwar Gaindarpersaud

Chief Eric Clifford said multiple videos of the arrest of 31-year-old Yugeshwar Gaindarpersaud were reviewed, including police body camera footage and a video taken by Gaindarpersaud's father. 

Clifford stated Tuesday that Gaindarpersaud resisted arrest "both actively and passively" and that the officer who has not been officially identified "at no time" attempted to impair Gainderpersaud's breathing or blood circulation. 

A longer version of a video that sparked protest Monday evening has since been released on Facebook

The footage shows Gainderpersaud squirming under the weight of the officer, who appears to place his knee on the man's neck and head. The arresting officer is shown punching the unarmed Gaindarpersaud several times before additional officers arrive. Gaindarpersaud is then handcuffed and led to a police vehicle. 

Clifford said Gaindarpersaud never lost consciousness throughout the incident. Gaindarpersaud told WAMC he blacked out and woke up at Ellis hospital.

Protesters plan to gather next Monday at Schenectady City Hall. 

 

Lucas Willard is a reporter and host at WAMC Northeast Public Radio, which he joined in 2011.
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