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Nassau County police caught on camera beating man during traffic stop

Posted at 7:33 PM, May 06, 2014
and last updated 2014-05-06 19:33:10-04

WESTBURY, Long Island (PIX11) — In many police traffic stop videos there’s an immediate need for context.

But in the black and white clip that caught 20-year-old Kyle Howell’s April 25 encounter with Nassau County Police, his parents and lawyers are now also demanding an explanation.

They want to know why the young man ended up on the receiving end of dozens of punches, thrown by two plain clothes officers.

“I have nerve damage on the left side of my face. I have a fracture on the orbital bone right here, my nose is fractured as well, and I also have another fracture on the other side of my face,” said Howell.

Kyle says he was on his way home from work that day when he pulled over his Honda onto Covert Street in Westbury.

Nassau County PD investigating after plain clothes officer assault man during traffic stop

The officers in the video have since been put on desk duty.

What Kyle did not know at the time is that a surveillance camera mounted on the side of the adjacent building ensured his police encounter — and the subsequent investigation — would begin with a rare degree of transparency.

Without this video, Kyle might not have been able to offer his side of the story, and respond to police accusations that during the stop, he allegedly tried to hide drugs in his possession and resist arrest.

“The video is a violent depiction of a brutal beating. It’s not as if there is one punch, or two punches. The officer can be seen pulling out his flashlight and beating him on the head. It’s just a horrible, horrible assault,” said attorney Amy Marion.

Kyle intends to sue the department and Nassau University Medical Center for allegedly helping to cover up his injuries.

The Medical Center, and the Nassau County Police department both declined to comment.

But the Nassau County DA’s office isn’t brushing this under the rug.

We’ve seen this video and have been investigating both the actions of the officers as well as the charges that the police filed against Mr. Howell.

“They gave me description of his injuries. So after hearing that, I cringed. All I could think is, oh my god why somebody do that. What could he have actually done deserve such treatment,” said Kyle’s mother, Joan.