Officials are asking for a federal and state review of an incident involving a Springfield police detective that occurred earlier this year.
Springfield Police Det. Gregg Bigda was suspended for 60 days by Springfield Police Commissioner John Barbieri for the way Bigda reportedly handled that February 2016 incident, in which some juveniles allegedly stole an undercover police cruiser.
Bigda allegedly threatened to injure the teens' skulls and put drug evidence on them.
On Friday, Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno said that the city is asking Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey's office and the U.S. Attorney's office to investigate the interrogation and arrest of those juveniles.
Hampden County District Attorney Anthony Gulluni noted that the move - which he said was a "civil rights review" - was made in agreement with and after consulting with Sarno's office, Healey's office, and federal officials.
“The incidents as depicted on the video recordings are contrary to the rules, regulations and policies of the City of Springfield Police Department and are not tolerated by the Police Commissioner and his command staff. Moreover, such actions are not representative of behavior, actions or culture exhibited by the vast majority of officers who serve and protect the residents of the City. As indicated at the meeting, the City and Police Department stand ready to fully cooperate and are committed to providing an open and transparent review in accordance with applicable law," Sarno said in a statement.
Late last month, Sarno had asked for a review of if video of that encounter between Bigda and the juveniles could be publicly released.
However, Sarno's office noted Friday that both Healey's office and the U.S. Department of Justice asked that audio and video recordings of the interrogations, as well as findings of the internal affairs investigation, not be released because it may prejudice the investigations.
“The behavior exhibited during the interrogation is plainly unacceptable, but it is not reflective of the professional and dedicated hard work put forth by the men and women of the Springfield Police Department on a daily basis," Gulluni explained.
Western Mass News will continue to follow this story and will have more information as it becomes available.
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