A violent encounter between a former New Jersey police chief and a Black teen in 2016 has resurfaced recently in a video circulating on social networks.
Ex-Bordentown Township Chief Frank Nucera Jr., 61, slammed Timothy Stroye, then 18, into a metal doorjamb during an arrest at a Ramada hotel in September 2016, federal prosecutors said. The handcuffed teen was beaten and subjected to racist remarks, with Nucera having said Blacks were “like ISIS” and “they have no value,” authorities explained. He also allegedly said he wished he could join a firing squad to “mow them [Blacks] down.”
The “racially motivated” encounter, spurred by a report that a “Black male” had failed to pay his $65 hotel bill and refused to get out of the pool, led to Nucera’s resignation and hate crime charges late last year, the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News reported.
Nucera is expected to stand trial in federal court in Camden, New Jersey later this year, the Inquirer and Daily News, who obtained the video, 9-1-1 tapes and police logs about the incident, also reported.
But Nucera, who began as the police chief and town administrator in 2006, will likely face judgment for other charges as well. He also ordered police dogs to be deployed at high school basketball games to scare Black spectators, authorities also said.
Officers in the chief’s department had watched him and called the FBI to report his actions in various incidents, former U.S. District Attorney William Fitzpatrick said late last year. An officer had secretly taped Nucera during a year-long investigation, NBC News reported.
Despite Nucera’s “racist” past, he vehemently denied wrongdoing and pleaded not guilty. He is free on a $500,000 unsecured bond.
Some residents of Bordentown Township, a predominantly White community, were outraged that Nucera’s actions could go unreported and unpunished for several years. Several activists had addressed the issue when the incident with Stroye made national headlines. More folks called for punishment when Stroye, who said he thought cops were going to shoot him, was charged for resisting arrest. The charge was later dismissed.