Buffalo Cops Resign in Protest After 2 Officers Were Suspended for Shoving Elderly Man

Sounds like this isn’t just a case of “a few bad cops.”

In Denver, a protester holds an American flag upside down. David Zalubowski/AP

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis and more, subscribe to Mother Jones' newsletters.

Last night, a graphic video of Buffalo, New York, cops shoving a 75-year-old peace activist to the ground went viral—revealing that he did not, in fact, trip and fall, as the department had initially claimed. The activist, Martin Gugino, could be seen bleeding in the video and had to be hospitalized.

Soon after, the officers were suspended without pay.

Then, today, this happened:

To be clear, these 57 officers didn’t quit the force. But they are refusing to participate in the unit that performs crowd control. As the Buffalo News reported, a police union official said the suspended officers were “simply following orders.” The mass resignation was a sign of solidarity for the people who, again, pushed a 75 year-old peace activist to the ground for violating curfew. “They were simply doing their job,” the union official continued. “I don’t know how much contact was made. He did slip in my estimation. He fell backwards.”

Sort of sounds like this isn’t just a case of “a few bad cops,” but instead a systematic problem of police causing violence and refusing to be held accountable for their actions.

Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.