Civil rights attorney, Tony Rupp speaks to Luke Moretti of WIVB on behalf of his client.
James Kistner was having breakfast with his sons at his Buffalo East Side home on New Year’s Day 2017 when he noticed police at his apartment across the street.
They finished breakfast before Kistner walked outside to find out what might have caused the police presence at the apartment on Schmarbeck Avenue.
What happened to him next was caught on video obtained by News 4 Investigates and is the subject of a civil rights lawsuit in federal court against the city and several of its police officers.
Not only was Kistner struck by a police SUV and injured, but his attorney alleges officers surrounding Kistner’s son while he called 911, shoved him around and took his phone. Police cancelled the ambulance call.
The officers twice tried to get Kistner admitted in the psych ward at ECMC, claiming he attacked the police cruiser.
When that effort failed, police charged Kistner with felony criminal mischief and a disorderly conduct violation.
Anthony Rupp, Kistner’s attorney, said the officers conspired to cover up the incident to avoid discipline for hitting Kistner with a police cruiser.