Prosecutors say officers involved in the violent arrest of a Philadelphia woman accused of underage drinking at a New Jersey beach over the Memorial Day weekend won't face any criminal charges. "I'm not a bad person, I'm not this person that they're out here trying to make me seem like". "One situation doesn't define me".
She defended her conduct Wednesday on "CBS This Morning", saying her "attitude" on the beach did not justify the officers' actions.
Emily Weinman, whose sunny outing at Wildwood beach in New Jersey turned into a viral video of her being beaten by Jersey cops, told her side of the story this morning on ABC's "Good Morning America". "After the bystander video came out and started getting attention, that's when they charged her with the aggravated assault", Dicht said. When asked on "GMA" whether that was her reason for not giving the officer her name, she said, "No, not mainly".
Civil rights lawyers and others have questioned whether the police overstepped their authority in continuing to pursue Weinman and seek her name after she cooperated with a breathalyzer test and passed it and they had told her they were not going to cite her with anything.
The woman's attorney, Steven Dicht, said on the talk show that the charges against his client escalated after the video was widely distributed.
In the body cam footage, one of the officers says he's going to arrest her after she refuses to give her name.
The Cape May County Prosecutor's Office said Tuesday that it had completed its preliminary investigation into the incident and determined there was not enough evidence to warrant criminal charges against the arresting officers for use of excessive force.
It still isn't clear if Weinman plans to file a lawsuit against the Wildwood police.
The bodycam video shows Weinman walking away from the officers, with one warning her that she is "about to get dropped". "Kind of upset. The things people say about me". Weinman then is seen spitting toward the officers. "When he smashed my head into the ground, I got sand in my mouth".
The Wildwood Police Department's Internal Affairs Unit is conducting an administrative investigation, with oversight by the Cape May County Prosecutor's Professional Standards Unit. Following our interview with Weinman and her attorney, we reached out to the Wildwood police chief and the city's mayor for comment.