Carlo Drogo’s Statement on Brutality Allegations

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Millville Police car dashboard cameras caught this confrontation between police and the plaintiff Sheila Stevenson.

    The following is a statement from former Millville Police officer Carlo Drogo about the civil case he has been named in:

    "The allegations made in the plaintiff's civil complaint are an outright distortion of the facts and I assert that the stop was based on probable cause and that her arrest was lawful. The plaintiff was provided with due process in a court of law for any and all charges that she faced as a result of her actions on that night. She was charged with a city ordinance violation for riding a bicycle on a sidewalk in the arts district, a traffic summons for failure to keep right on a bicycle, and a list of criminal charges ranging from hindering apprehension by providing a false name, obstruction of justice, resisting arrest, and possession of a controlled dangerous substance (crack cocaine), and was lodged into the county jail on those charges along with other active warrants that she had at that time.

    With the advice of counsel, she plead guilty to resisting arrest and drug charges and was sentenced accordingly, so certainly the initial stop of her was deemed lawful and appropriate by my supervisors, the prosecutors, the judge, and even her own defense attorney. Please remember, no allegation of false arrest was brought up during any of the numerous court hearings the plaintiff had.

    I invite anyone to view the dash cam video while reading a copy of her complaint. You will clearly see the frivolousness of her suit and the outright false statements contained in her complaint. During the incident, I was accidentally exposed to police pepper spray and therefore was unable to see clearly. I was so affected that I could not even drive and had to be driven back to the police station. Every day that I worked the streets during my career, I learned that no stop was routine, and that the unexpected was to be expected. I stand by everything that I did that night and only ask for the same due process afforded earlier to the plaintiff.

    Please know that I am the person who activated the dash cam that night. I turned it on as an objective witness because I was acting in good faith to enforce the laws of the state. By the way, the ordinance prohibiting the plaintiff from riding her bicycle on the sidewalk was adopted long ago by the City Commission in Millville. I'm sure it was their intent to improve the quality of life of the residents in Millville.

    Just ask yourself: What was someone doing riding their bicycle in the middle of the night in a high drug area, just a short distance from where drug and gang related shootings have been happening? Well, that was the question I was trying to answer. And apparently my suspicions were correct, the plaintiff was under the influence and had crack cocaine in her possession, along with the fact that she had other outstanding warrants and decided to resist arrest.

    Another thought is that Sheila Stevenson must think she is untouchable because she has been in and out of Superior Court for this lawsuit numerous times and yet, she has had an active warrant for the past several months. I guess the police are scared to arrest her in fear of getting sued next... Is that the kind of world you want to live in?"