Society

Maryland Cop Convicted After Holding Gun To Black Man's Head (Video)

| by Michael Allen
Jenchesky Santiago and William CunninghamJenchesky Santiago and William Cunningham

Prince George's County, Maryland, Police Officer Jenchesky Santiago was found guilty on Dec. 2 on two charges that stemmed from a cellphone video (below) showing him holding a gun to a black man's head on May 10, 2014.

Santiago was convicted of first-degree assault and misconduct in office, The Washington Post reports.

Santiago was allegedly trying to impress two friends who were riding in his police car without authorization.

"The actions Officer Santiago chose to take that day are his alone," Police Chief Mark Magaw said, according to WJLA. "His behavior is flagrant, appalling and isolated. His actions are among the worst I've seen as Chief of Police and that will be taken into account when I make a decision about his employment."

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In the video released by the police department after the verdict, Santiago points his gun at William Cunningham's head and then says: "Go ahead. I dare you to f---ing fight me, son."

Cunningham said during the trial that Santiago first pointed the gun at him before the video, filmed by Cunningham's cousin Kennieth Smith, began.

Cunningham testified that Santiago's gun made contact with his skin and moved his head.

Smith was reportedly dropping Cunningham off at home when Santiago pulled up to his vehicle.

According to prosecutors, Santiago told Smith and Cunningham that Smith's car was parked illegally, even though there were no signs that restricted parking.

Cunningham and Smith testified they told Santiago that Smith was dropping off Cunningham, but Santiago told them it was a drug-ridden area.

As Cunningham was walking to his residence, Santiago reportedly went after him with his gun drawn. He then walked Cunningham back to the car at gunpoint and yelled: "Get back in the car! Get back in the car, now!"

Cunningham was handcuffed by Santiago and charged with disorderly conduct, which was dismissed.

Cunningham said that Santiago told him and Smith off-camera: "Y'all gonna learn about Officer Santiago today. I just got back from Iraq. I'm not scared of you all," and, "You need to watch your attitude because us P.G. cops, we shoot people."

Cunningham has filed a lawsuit against Santiago, which was on hold until the criminal case concluded.

Sources: WJLA, The Washington Post / Photo Credit: PGPD Police/YouTube