Thursday, February 11, 2016

Aida Guzman gets direct apology from Mayor Nutter

Aida Guzman, who was hit in the back of the head by a Philadelphia police officer, received an in-person apology from Mayor Nutter Friday.

Aida Guzman gets direct apology from Mayor Nutter


Aida Guzman, her lower lip still blackened by a blow from a Philadelphia police officer, received a face-to-face apology from Mayor Nutter Friday at City Hall.

Guzman held the hand of her lawyer Enrique Latoison as they left City Hall, where a group of protesters had gathered to speak out against the incident.

The Mayor "said he was sorry about everything," Latoison said, adding that his client was satisfied with the apology.

The 10 to 15 protesters on the east side of City Hall, some of them carrying signs that read, "We are all Aida," asked Guzman to speak, but she declined.

"She's been through a lot," Latoison said.

Berta Joubert said the problem with police brutality extended well beyond Philadelphia Police Lt. Jonathan Josey, who was captured on video hitting Guzman in the back of the head.

"I think we live in a city where police brutality has been part and parcel," Joubert said. "This is the city that bombed itself."

Guzman's attorney said Nutter embraced Guzman during a meeting in his office and apologized for the incident.

"It was a heartfelt, sincere apology," Latoison said. "[Guzman] was very emotional about it. She really appreciates it from the bottom of her heart."

Latoison said his client was still in pain from Sunday's incident but said she hasn't decided whether she'll sue the city.

"She is hurt, she does have injuries," he said. "I don't know if I would have to file suit to get her medical bills paid."

Latoison said he didn't discuss the possibility of a lawsuit with the mayor, and added Nutter said he was "horrified" by the video, posted online Monday, that showed the 39-year-old Guzman taking a sucker-punch to the face from Philadelphia police officer Jonathan Josey.

Police officials said Thursday that Josey, 39, a decorated 19-year veteran of the force, would be fired. Charges against Guzman - which alleged that she had thrown water at Josey during celebrations at Sunday's Puerto Rican Parade - were dropped Wednesday.


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The Philadelphia Inquirer's Chris Hepp, Tricia Nadolny, Julia Terruso, and Claudia Vargas take you inside Philadelphia's City Hall.

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