Warning: The video shown below is graphic in nature.
Two Buffalo police officers have been suspended without pay after they were caught on camera Thursday night allegdly pushing a 75-year-old man during a protest, where he fell back and hit his head.
The man, identified as Martin Gugino, can be seen walking up to officers who are trying to enforce the 8 p.m. curfew. There is a brief exchange before he falls backward. An officer near Gugino can be seen allegdly pushing him, causing him to stumble, fall, and hit his head on the cement outside city hall.
Activist group PUSH Buffalo, of which Gugino is a member, says he would attend many protests in Buffalo.
Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said Thursday night that Gugino has a serious head injury but was in stable condition at ECMC. On Friday morning, Poloncarz released an update on his condition.
The original statement from Buffalo Police said a man was injured when he tripped and fell. The police spokesperson says once the BPD was made aware of additional video, Commissioner Byron Lockwood opened an immediate investigation and the two officers were suspended.
Petitions calling for the firing of the officers involved in the incident are circulating online. One has exceeded its original 200,000 goal and is on its way to 300,000 signatures.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo spoke about the incident on Twitter, calling it "wholly unjustified and utterly disgraceful."
U.S. Senator Charles Schumer also released a statement, saying, "The video was deeply disturbing and the actions taken were wrong. We need a prompt investigation and full accountability."
The state Attorney General's Office says it is aware of the incident.