Just like most cities in the United States, Atlantic City in the Garden State suffered horrible and eye-opening civil rights violations.
Most of these incidents involve the police department of New Jersey and instead of protecting the people, they’re the ones doing the damage. Some crimes took place in the top casinos in the city.
Back in June 2013, police officer Sterling Wheaten participated in an arrest that would land him in jail after 5 years. While on duty, a man was arrested near the Tropicana Hotel and Wheaten was called to the scene by his fellow policemen.
Wheaten arrived at the scene and without warning, he unleashed an attack K9 to bite the arrested man’s neck and then the former punched the man twice.
In his report, Wheaten said he attacked the man out of fear that he would grab a weapon and attack him. He also said he performed first aid to the man before the ambulance arrived.
In October 2018, the District Attorney of New Jersey looked at the case and investigated Wheaten’s alleged civil rights violations and falsifying records.
Malice in Harrah’s Casino
Harrah’s Casino was one of the biggest casino destinations in all of New Jersey back in the days, until today. But in 2013, the casino was caught in a controversy.
Attorneys Paul D’Amato and Michael Maggiano petitioned a criminal investigation about Harrah’s Casino’s beatings perpetrated by security guards.
In this story, two men Robert Coney and Sean Oaks were brutally beaten down resulting in near death experiences by completely unprovoked security guards at the casino. Coney was struck in the head with a metal baton that cracked his skull.
Oaks, on the other hand, was relentlessly beaten resulting in shattered ribs and a serious concussion after he was put down and kicked again and again.
After the beating Oaks was put in handcuffs and to his recollection, he remembers one of the security personnel suggesting to his colleagues that they break his arms if the cuffs don’t fit.
That case then shed light on other “sadistic” crimes committed by other Harrah’s security guards inAtlantic City. These violations involving security guards tormented not only patrons of Atlantic City but workers as well.
In a different surveillance video, two cab drivers were forcefully detained by security guards. The attorneys then brought the string of cases forward to the New Jersey State General and to the U.S. Attorney General.
Police harassment and brutality is not the only epidemic in Atlantic City. There are also many cases of racism and discrimination. There have been many cases of casinos, hotels and other businesses denying service to African American people that are mostly influenced by racism.
Many organizations are now pushing forward to better laws to protect locals and visitors of Atlantic City and New Jersey. Better law enforcement engagement is also being called out to promote peace of mind not fear when the police are around.
South Jersey Journal is dedicated to bringing these issues forward to inform people that this is not ok.