The Camden County Prosecutor’s Office conducted an investigation into the February 22, 2018 incident between Camden County Metro Police Department officers and Edward Minguela who alleged the officers used excessive force against him. Mr. Minguela was charged by police with resisting arrest and obstruction of the administration of law relating to this matter.
On February 22, 2018, Camden County Metro Police officers were dispatched to Collings and New Hampshire Roads in Camden, New Jersey in response to a 911 call for a man with a gun. Upon their arrival, the officers saw two men who matched the descriptions given by the caller. One of the males, Edward Minguela, fit the description of the man with the gun.
The video from the Fairview Liquor Store showed officers approached Mr. Minguela with their guns drawn. Officer Nicholas Romantino holstered his weapon and attempted to bring Mr. Minguela’s left arm behind his back to be handcuffed. Mr. Minguela pulled his arm away from the officer who then grabbed him from behind and took him to the ground.
After Mr. Minguela appears to pull his arm away from the officer’s grasp a second time, Officer Romantino struck Mr. Minguela nine times. While striking him, the officer is heard on body worn camera ordering Mr. Minguela to put his hands behind his back. The officer tried again to secure his arm and Mr. Minguela pulled away. Mr. Minguela was punched three more times before Officer Romantino handcuffed him. No gun was found in Mr. Minguela’s possession.
Mr. Minguela’s allegations were reviewed and considered as part of the investigation into this incident by the Special Prosecutions Unit of the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office. Prosecutor Mary Eva Colalillo has concluded that the officers acted in accordance with the Attorney General’s Use of Force Policy in this matter. As a result, no criminal charges will be filed against any of the involved officers.
This matter will be returned to the Internal Affairs Unit of the Camden County Metro Police Department for their administrative investigation to determine if any officer violated their policies and procedures and to take appropriate administrative action.
All persons charged with a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Released April 19, 2018