An 84-year-old stopped for jaywalking in New York claims he was hospitalized after an incident with New York police officers saw him sustain major injuries. Kang Wong claims he was beaten by officers after being issued a $250 jay-walking ticket, while New York Police Commissioner Bill Bratton says he incurred his bloody and dazed state during a fall. Kang Wong was caught crossing an intersection illegally on Sunday, and, allegedly, was told to stand near a wall while an officer wrote him out a ticket.
Speaking to the New York Post, eyewitness Ian King said that there was some kind of language barrier, which meant Wong did not understand to stay standing and instead began to walk away. The officer then tried to pull Wong back towards the wall, at which point "he began to struggle with the cop", King said. Wong was then apparently left bleeding and with cuts to his face. You can see the extent of his injuries as captured in these pictures.
Wong was then cuffed and taken to St Luke's hospital for treatment, which consisted of four staples to head wounds, before being taken to the 24th Precinct station house. Wong's son, who is a lawyer, said that he thought the cops were playing games because they wouldn't initially tell him what his father had been charged with. In the early hours of Monday morning, Wong was fingerprinted, then charged with jaywalking, resisting arrest, obstructing governmental administration, and disorderly conduct. He was then escorted home by his family, and given a desk-appearance ticket.
Despite eye witnesses being present at the scene, whether Wong was physically assaulted, or whether Wong fell in sustaining the injuries, is still unclear.
Wong's family says they intend to press charges, while the NYPD say the incident is under internal review. Meanwhile, Commissioner Bratton insists that "no excessive force" was used on Wong.
Officers were apparently patrolling the area because of a death earlier during the day at the Upper West Side intersection, the third pedestrian death in the area in a month, and the ninth in New York City. The so-called 'ticket blitz' was allegedly started to try and curb more fatalities. If it comes out that Wong was indeed injured by a police officer, the issue of just how much safer the officers are making the area will surely rise to the fore.