Beat Man After Nearly Hitting Him on Queens Blvd, Says Cops
By Conor Greene
An NYPD officer is facing assault charges after allegedly knocking out a pedestrian who was angry that the off-duty cop nearly ran him over on Queens Boulevard in Forest Hills.
Officer Jamel Dennis, 32, assigned to the Brooklyn North Narcotics unit, was arraigned on Monday night in Queens Criminal Court on second-degree assault charges, according to District Attorney Richard Brown. He is accused of violently beating 41-year-old Geoffrey Hollinden near the intersection of 109th Street two weeks ago.
According to police, Dennis was driving his 2006 Infiniti on Queens Boulevard on the afternoon of November 17 when he almost struck Hollinden. Enraged at nearly being struck, Hollinden hit the rear of the Infiniti as it passed him. Moments later, the six foot six inch officer got out of his car, grabbed Hollinden around the waste and pulled him across the boulevard.
When they reached the eastbound service lane, Dennis allegedly lifted Hollinden to shoulder height before slamming him into the pavement, knocking him unconscious. As a result of the attack, Hollinden sustained a head laceration that required five staples to close, along with cranial bleeding, a herniated disc in the neck and substantial pain that caused him to be hospitalized for three days.
Two days after the incident, Dennis arrived at the 112th Precinct, identified himself as an NYPD officer and said he had been in a traffic dispute with another man who pushed him, and wanted to know if anyone had filed a complaint in connection with the accident. The same day, Dennis allegedly pointed out a scuff mark on the rear of his Infiniti to an officer with the NYPD’s Internal Affairs Bureau and said that was where the other man had hit the back of his car.
However, his involvement in the incident came to light because a witness wrote down Dennis’ license plate number after the alleged attack, said Brown. “As a motorist -and more so, as a police officer – the defendant should have known better than to allegedly take matters into his own hands and elevate a minor traffic dispute into a felonious assault,” he said.
If convicted, Dennis faces up to seven years in prison on the charges. He was released on his own recognizance and ordered back in court on January 15.