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Philadelphia top cop says he plans to fire officer who struck parade-goer

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 10:01 AM EDT, Thu October 4, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Police commissioner will suspend police officer on video "with the intent to dismiss"
  • Charge against woman struck by officer is dropped on Wednesday
  • Her attorney would like a public apology.
  • They have yet to decide whether to sue over the incident, attorney says

(CNN) -- A uniformed Philadelphia police officer seen in an online video striking a woman after he was hit by a liquid will be fired, the city's police commissioner announced Wednesday.

Lt. Jonathan Josey will be suspended first for 30 days, effective Thursday, "with the intent to dismiss," according to a release from Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey's office.

Josey could not be reached for comment Wednesday night.

Meanwhile, the district attorney dropped a disorderly conduct charge against the woman shown on the video, Aida Guzman, Wednesday afternoon.

Her attorney, Enrique Latoison, said his client never called for Josey to be fired, but agrees with the decision.

He said she doesn't believe the officer's actions reflect on the entire department, but would like a public apology.

"We do still believe an apology is need for the Hispanic community and the community as a whole," he told CNN in a phone interview.

A YouTube video, viewed more than 1.2 million times since it was posted Sunday, shows a woman being hit by police officer at the city's annual Puerto Rican Day Parade earlier that day.

The video shows a crowd of people gathered around about a dozen officers handcuffing a man against a car at the parade.

The woman, wearing a black shirt and jeans, is on the left side of the video and has a can in her left hand. The woman raises her left arm as she hops around behind one of the officers. The woman sprayed "Silly String" near the officers but didn't hit them, Latoison said.

The woman, who also had a bottle in her right hand, changes position in the video and a man behind her tosses liquid at the police. The woman turns toward the man.

As she turns and retreats, a uniformed officer in a white shirt walks quickly after her and appears to strike her in the face with his right hand. The woman is knocked to the ground.

The officer, identified by police as Josey, puts her in handcuffs, and two other officers lead her away. In the video, she appears to have blood coming from her mouth.

Latoison said Guzman was treated at an emergency facility for cuts and bruises on her face, and marks on her wrists from the handcuffs.

Guzman wants the city to pay for her medical bills, Latoison said. He and Guzman have yet to decide whether to take legal action, he added.

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