An Orlando police officer was indicted on three counts of battery Thursday after it was discovered that he shoved and choked a man during a September 8 unlawful arrest.
Cpl. Frank Sikos, who according to state records, is no stranger to abusing his power, also withheld information from his report after he arrested Bennett Robinson. Additionally, Sikos lied in his report about the altercation and stated that the man was ordered to stand back but did not comply with a lawful order, making it seem as though Robinson was going to attack.
Sikos said Robinson was intoxicated and does not feel as though [he] did anything wrong.
The Orlando Police Department refused to provide any information, other than a generic prepared statement. The video and arrest affidavit had to be obtained from Robinson’s attorney, Richard Hornsby.
The incident occurred after neighbors reported seeing a man enter a construction site at approximately 3 a.m. in the 1400 block of Alden Road, Orlando, Florida.
When police arrived they approached Robinson and asked him for his identification and when Robinson tell Sikos that [he] has due process and approaches the officer, Sikos became angry.
Bodycam video shows Cpl. Frank Sikos shove Robinson to the ground and then choke him. Siko immediately began accusing Robinson of “resisting arrest.”
“Don’t you walk up to me like that!” Sikos shouted. “You wanna walk up to me like that and go to jail? Don’t you ever fu**ing walk up to me like that again!”
In the video Robinson can be seen attempting to sit up, however, Sikos shoved him back to the ground each time.
Hornsby described Sikos as “a police officer on a power trip.”
Sikos is one of many Orlando officers involved in a 2010 lawsuit that cost the department $288,000 after they unlawfully arrested a man at his home and violated his rights for “horsing around” with a friend on the front lawn.
In the Robinson case, Hornsby said he wants to know why it took so long for the department to review the video after it was brought to their attention.
A Grand Jury indicted the officer, however, OPD did not arrest him. Instead, he was placed on paid leave and issued a citation to appear in court.
In a statement released Friday, OPD Chief Orlando Rolón, said, “The Orlando Police Department holds its officers to the highest standards.”
Sikos’ attorney said, “Corporal Sikos has served our community for over 20 years and is committed to defending his freedom, good name, and career in service to others.”
Hornsby said, “I definitely commend the State Attorney’s Office for pursuing the charges. Sikos’ written account of the arrest highly exaggerated, if not inaccurate.”
Robinson, who works in construction, says he was simply looking at the job site and tried to convey that information to Sikos.
It has also come into question why other officers stood around and watched as Sikos abused his power.
In an email to Ocala Post, Hornsby said a second officer who was on the scene also lied in a report.
In addition to the Robinson case, OPD is also being investigated for violating Freedom of the Press and Freedom of Information Act laws after they refusing to provide information to multiple media outlets.
Hornsby says the favoritism shown toward this officer is a double standard at best.
Robinson was arrested and charged with resisting arrest. The charges against Robinson were dropped after the State Attorney reviewed the video.
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