SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh and the Syracuse Police Department hosted a press conference on Thursday at 9:30 a.m. to show and discuss the body-worn camera footage from a circulating viral video on police handling an 8-year-old.
You can watch the entire press conference in the player below:
You can see the full, unclipped body-worn camera footage from the police officers who responded — Officers Kittelberger, Behuniak, and Ciciriello — below.
WARNING: Profanity from the body-worn camera footage was not censored. All body-worn camera footage is courtesy of the Syracuse Police Department.
Body-worn camera footage of Officer Kittelberger
Body-worn camera footage of Officer Behuniak
Body-worn camera footage of Officer Ciciriello
After showing pieces of the body-worn camera footage, the Syracuse Police Department First Deputy Chief Joseph Cecile took the stand and discussed how the police handled the event. Cecile shares that he understands that some of the video is hard to watch and is visceral, but adds that the viral video that has been circulating was only part of the story. The body cam footage rounds the story out and shows a positive outcome, Cecile says. Cecile shows how the officers took the time to engage with the child’s family after they were returned home. Cecile says that the officers’ actions were “community policing 101… what every citizen is asking of their police officers.” Cecile also says, however, that the police “would prefer to not be in these positions at all.” “Everyone would love to have positive interactions with children. But oftentimes we are the only ones around and the only ones responding when these incidents happen,” said the first deputy.
After First Deputy Chief Joseph Cecile spoke, Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh took the stand. Walsh shared that everyone in the community is frustrated — police, store owners, neighbors, and family. Walsh also says that “we need to resist blaming” whether it was family or officers. “We want these positive interactions,” said Walsh.
At the end of the briefing, Cecile and Walsh answered some questions.