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Seabrook fires two officers for Bergeron brutality
A report from an internal review of the Seabrook Police Department said officer Mark Richardson had about 125 pounds and 4 inches on Michael Bergeron, then 19, when Richardson slammed Bergeron into a wall inside Seabrook’s police station.
“It is reasonable to conclude ... that the amount of force used by officer Richardson to put Bergeron against the wall is well beyond the force needed” for defensive purposes, the report states.
“I’m hoping as time moves on, that cloud lifts,” he said, adding that he’s reviewing department policies to prevent future uses of excessive force.
Laurent is then seen pepper-spraying Bergeron while he’s on the floor.
“Bergeron, with officer Richardson’s help, leaned against the wall for several seconds before falling back to the floor,” the report continues. “Officer Laurent immediately stepped between officers Richardson and Dietenhofer and sprayed Bergeron in the face with (pepper spray).”
Town selectmen contracted Municipal Resources of Meredith in April to conduct an independent investigation of the incident and the police department.
“One of the aspects of the video that appeared on YouTube that has caused much comment is of officer Laurent just after he sprayed Bergeron,” it states. “Officer Laurent appears to be smiling and laughing as he at times looks at the wall-mounted security camera.
“In the 25 years I’ve been there, every time I’ve walked down that hallway I was on camera and I was aware of that,” he said. “Every officer is aware of the camera.”
“Sgt. Wasson was told by Joyce Bergeron about her possession of a video depicting her son having the ‘crap beat out of him’ by three SPD officers and being maced by officer Laurent, who ‘smiled pretty for the camera.’ While Sgt. Wasson expressed interest in viewing the video, he never did, and apparently did not alert others in the chain of command as to what Joyce Bergeron told him,” the report states.
“It just really bothered him for all these years,” she said, adding that he posted the video “because he didn’t want somebody (else) to get hurt.”
“If and when they bring a suit, we’ll address it,” Joseph McKittrick, an attorney for Seabrook, said Wednesday.
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