Philly police officer Lt. Jonathan Josey has been stabbed, hailed a hero for shooting a would-be robber, was a Sexy Single for the Daily News and police say he has a good reputation on the force. Now his distinguished career, all 19 years of it, is being overshadowed by a few seconds of video that show Josey hitting a woman in the face.
At least two people taped the incident with their phones. The video made it around the world in a day.
Josey is accused of striking the woman, Aida Guzman, after a parade in Philadelphia on Sunday. Video appears to show the woman doing something near the officer before he turns around and hits her in the mouth. Guzman, was led away, mouth bleeding, in handcuffs. She was cited for spraying silly string, according to police.
Lt. Josey has a good reputation, according to Deputy Police Commissioner Richard Ross. And it is not the first time Josey has made headlines.
In 2006, Josey was on of the year's Sexiest Singles for the Daily News.
Josey was stabbed in July 2010 when he was off duty. Josey was trying to break up an argument between two women and another off-duty officer outside a bar in West Philadelphia, police said. The women were charged with attempted murder.
In March of that same year, Josey shot and killed an Iraqi vet who tried to rob a 7-11 near St. Joe’s University. Josey was a regular customer at the convenience store. He walked in while Kenneth DeShields was trying to rob the store. Josey chased the gunman out of the store. When DeShields reached for his waistband, Josey fired three shots, killing DeShields. Lower Merion Township police and the Montgomery County District Attorney investigated the shooting and exonerated Josey, saying, “Lt. Josey was justified in continuing to employ deadly force while the perpetrator remained in control and possession of the firearm he used to commit the robbery and refused to show his hands or release the gun to ensure the officer’s safety.”
Video NBC10 shot at the scene that night shows the store clerk shaking Josey’s hand and hugging him. Josey is pictured here in the center of the video:
And earlier this summer NBC10 interviewed Josey during the public viewing for fallen officer Brian Lorenzo. He talked about why Lorenzo was a great cop. “He was the epitome of a good cop and a great human being,” Josey said. “That’s what a lot of people forget, the humanistic side of being a cop.”
Josey is on desk duty, which is standard operating procedure, while the department investigates Sunday’s incident. Fraternal Order of Police President, John McNesby said Josey is "concerned about getting his side of the story out," but that the FOP has reassured him by telling him to just wait until the investigation is complete.
Josey and other officers were at a traffic stop when this happened. Internal Affairs investigators are looking at multiple videos. Police say some videos show Guzman spraying silly string at the officers. Other videos from the incident show people throwing things at police, according to investigators.
Police are asking for people who witnessed the incident to call Internal Affairs at 215-685-5056.