With all of the controversial happenings with the courts in the United States it is unlikely that anyone expected a judge to do this.
Justice Mark Grisanti was caught on video shirtless and shoving a Buffalo, New York police officer as he named his connections to the mayor, The New York Times reported.
The video begins with the Buffalo police arriving at the scene of a vulgarity-laced dispute between two sets of neighbors over where someone parked a car. On one side: a shirtless man and his wife, in a pink top; on the other, a family that lives across the street.
— Charlie Specht (@Charlie_Reports) October 13, 2020
As the officers try to separate them, the woman in pink continues to s
cream. One officer tells her to be quiet. She refuses, and another officer moves to restrain her. Her husband rushes up and pushes the officer.
“Dude,” the shirtless man says, “you better get off my wife,” adding an obscenity for emphasis.
The man is a New York Supreme Court justice, Mark J. Grisanti, and he is not shy in citing his connections as he speaks to the officers, invoking his friendship with the mayor and his ties to the police.
Race was quickly invoked in the case as one official pointed out that the judge was white and saying he believes that is why he was let off sans a severe punishment.
“I highly doubt that if it was an African-American man with no authority that this would have ended the same way,” Buffalo Common Council President Darius G. Pridgen, who is black, said.
“What happened after that is what’s cloudy in the minds of many people, especially in the African-American community,” he said. “I have heard explanations. I don’t understand them.”
The video from the police body camera captured the altercation that the judge said is the latest episode in a long running neighborhood feud.
“My daughter and my son-in-law are both police officers,” the judge said in the video. “I’ll call them right now.”
“You arrest my wife, you’re going to be sorry,” the judge, who was slurring his speech and using obscenities, said. One of the officer’s commented that the judge “smells like cheap beer.”
“If you don’t get the cuffs off her right now, you’re going to have a problem,” the judge said before he named the Buffalo mayor. “Listen, I’m good friends with Byron Brown.”
He apologized to the officer he pushed and he continued to explain himself and said that the officer should “chill out,” saying it was “constructive criticism.”
“Let me give you some constructive criticism,” an officer responded. “You want to drop another copper’s name?” an officer shouted as he handcuffed the judge and his wife.
“You want to make us look dirty, is that what you want to do?” the officer said. “So how am I helping you now?”
“You’re dropping everybody’s name with a badge and you’re expecting special treatment. How does that look like to everybody in this environment right now?” he said.
“It doesn’t look good,” the judge said. “You’re right.”