.

Attorney for Darien Coach: Video Shows No Assault on Cops

Not only does store surveillance video show his client didn't assault police, Attorney Mark Sherman said, it shows an officer being pulled away as other officers held the coach down.

Norwalk police arrest photo of Christian Garnett of Strawberry Hill Avenue, Stamford, charged Oct. 31 with driving while under the influence, assault on a police officer, among other charges.
Norwalk police arrest photo of Christian Garnett of Strawberry Hill Avenue, Stamford, charged Oct. 31 with driving while under the influence, assault on a police officer, among other charges.
Store surveillance video shows Christian Garnett, a suspended Darien High School football coach, did not assault any Norwalk police officer, according to Garnett's attorney, Mark Sherman of Stamford.

Sherman said the video shows that an officer was pulled away from Garnett, who was being restrained by several other officers when he was arrested just after midnight on Oct. 31, 2013. In addition, according to the defense lawyer, Norwalk police made statements in a recent hearing that were inconsistent with what the video showed.

Sgt. Lisa Cotto, a spokeswoman for Norwalk police, said the department could not comment on the matter because Garnett is in the process of suing the department. She did say that the department would like to see the videotape to help it investigate the police-brutality complaint Garnett filed with police.

Garnett, who has been on the Darien High School football coaching staff and a lacrosse coach in Darien, was charged by Norwalk police with driving while intoxicated, resisting arrest, assault on a police officer and possession of drug paraphernalia.

"It [the video]shows that an officer had to be pulled away from allegedly assaulting Christian while several other officers were holding Christian down," Sherman said in an interview Tuesday morning.

"Three days after the arrest, we filed a report with Norwalk Police Department to have it investigate police brutality [in connection with Garnett's arrest]," Sherman said. "Yet it was the defense team that found this video -- not the Police Department.

"It's outrageous that the defense had to find it," Sherman continued. "We believe the tape is exculpatory. It shows that Christian didn't take a swing or assault any officer."

The video comes from Hancock Pharmacy at 114 Connecticut Ave., Sherman said. It has been turned over to the state's attorney's office for review, and Sherman expects to release it soon on YouTube so anybody can watch it.

A Norwalk police officer, Michelle McSally, received injuries to her knee and ankle when trying to put handcuffs on Garnett, Norwalk police said.

During the struggle to put Garnett in handcuffs, several police officers piled up on him on the ground as he struggled, and he was tasered twice, police said.

In the first week of January, an administrative hearing was held in Waterbury by the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles before a decision was made not to immediately allow Garnett to drive, Sherman said. During that hearing, Norwalk police officers testified about the incident.

"We found them to be reluctant to talk about the assault [on Garnett] and we found their statements inconsistent with what we found in the videotape," Sherman said.

"Much of the testimony that came out of that hearing is going to be helpful in Christian's defense," he said.

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »