For Immediate Release: September 10th, 2020
City of Utica Statement
On Friday September 4th, the Utica Police Department responded to a 9-11 call involving a domestic incident on Spring Street in which a male, Kerwin Taylor, threatened a female with a firearm.
Body worn footage from several Officers shows Mr. Taylor fleeing the scene and resisting arrest. An illegal firearm was confiscated and Mr. Taylor was eventually taken into custody and charged with multiple firearm related felonies.
Subsequent body worn footage shows an Officer, Matthew Felitto, engaging in unauthorized physical force which UPD does not tolerate nor condone. At this time, the City of Utica has probable cause to believe Officer Felitto was not advancing the interests of the Department and City.
Body worn footage also shows another Officer intervening and yelling “stop” twice ending the inappropriate conduct.
The incident is under internal administrative investigation and has been referred to the Oneida County District Attorney’s office for possible criminal charges.
Based on the body worn footage, Officer Felitto was immediately suspended without pay and the City will be seeking termination under the collective bargaining agreement.
The Utica Police Department is an accredited agency and does an outstanding job protecting and serving our community. Furthermore, the Utica Police Department promotes a culture of transparency, accountability and building partnerships as it was among the first Police Departments in New York State to record all police interrogations, mandate body-worn cameras and make the personnel files of its Officers public.
The swift and decisive action taken reflects our values as the City will hold all of its employees accountable when inappropriate conduct occurs.
The body worn footage of the incident can be found at https://drive.google.com/file/