All 57 of the Buffalo police officers on the department's Emergency Response Team have resigned from their positions on the special unit following Thursday's incident in Niagara Square.
That's according to Buffalo PBA President John Evans, who confirmed a report you saw first on Spectrum News Friday afternoon.
What You Need To Know
- Entire Buffalo Police ERT resigns to support two officers who were suspended after pushing 75-year-old man Thursday
- The officers have only resigned from the ERT; They have not resigned from their police officer roles
- The injured man, 75-year-old Martin Gugino, was taken to the hospital with serious injuries. He is active and alert as of Friday
The officers have not resigned from their police officer roles.
It comes after the suspension of two ERT members who shoved a 75-year-old protester in Niagara Square Thursday evening after video from Spectrum News and a local radio station surfaced showing the incident.
That man, activist Martin Gugino, was taken to Erie County Medical Center with serious injuries to his head, though he is active and alert today.
Evans says the members resigned to support the two suspended officers, and in disgust of how the administration is handling the entire incident.
Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz learned about the group action during a press conference Friday afternoon.
"I'm very disappointed if they resigned. I don't know how many individuals there are, as I said I have no oversight directly, that is no oversight over the Buffalo Police Department. My goal as county executive is to ensure the safety and welfare of the entire public. The individuals who are protesting, our general members of the public who may be not as well as our local police force, because I want each and everyone one of them to be safe in all our endeavors,” Poloncarz (D) said.
The Buffalo Police Department did not immediately return a request for comment.
A press conference with police was originally scheduled to be held at 1:30 p.m. Friday, but was postponed and hasn't been rescheduled yet.
Mayor Byron Brown released a statement Friday afternoon, saying:
"The City of Buffalo is aware of developments related to the work assignments of certain members of the Buffalo police force. At this time, we can confirm that contingency plans are in place to maintain police services and ensure public safety within our community. The Buffalo police continue to actively work with the New York State Police and other cooperating agencies."
New York State Police have confirmed they are aware of the resignations and will be "adding additional troopers in the region."