⚫️ Video posted to Twitter shows teens fighting with Jersey City cops at Newport Centre

⚫️ The unverified video clip says a 16-year-old was punched by an officer

⚫️ Jersey City says it has 'zero tolerance for excessive use of force'

JERSEY CITY — Video of a brawl inside the Newport Centre mall involving city police officers and what appears to be several teenagers has been making the rounds on social media.

HudPost shared the clip on Twitter, identifying one male as a 16-year-old, seen being punched by what appears to be a plainclothes officer. Other uniformed officers are also involved.

Jersey City mall teen police fight (HudPost via Twitter)
Jersey City mall teen police fight (HudPost via Twitter)

Statement from Jersey City about the video

“As has been made clear, in Jersey City we have zero tolerance for excessive use of force,” Jersey City spokesperson Kimberly Wallace-Scalcione said in a written statement on Tuesday. “Officers have undergone extensive training for these scenarios to ensure officers only use any type of force when it is absolutely necessary.”

“As is standard procedure, the City is working with the HCPO and provided them with all of the body camera footage. Therefore, we cannot comment while it is actively under review.”

Jersey City mall teen police fight (HudPost via Twitter)
Jersey City mall teen police fight (HudPost via Twitter)

Unconfirmed reporting on the video

The Jersey Journal reported that police radio transmissions said one person was arrested and charged with a weapons offense and hindering. Another officer said in the radio transmission that there were “a couple of arrests with knives," acccording to the same report.

HudPost is an online publication that “curates, creates, and celebrates content relevant and native to the people of Hudson County, New Jersey," according to its own website.

Wallace-Scalcione also said that the administration of Mayor Steven Fulop “created a Force Unit to conduct internal investigations regarding all use of force, and both incidents are currently under investigation.”

Bridgewater mall teen fight prompted state review

A mall fight at Bridgewater Commons just over a year ago that involved two teens sparked strong public reaction after the responding police officers appeared to handle one light-skinned teen differently from a Black teen, who was tackled to the floor and handcuffed.

That prompted public demonstrations over excessive force used against the younger teenager and accusations of racial profiling.

In that matter, the state Attorney General's Office last month said Bridgewater was taking too long with its overall response since being given an internal affairs report in September, while the Bridgewater mayor said any causes for delay “rests squarely in Trenton.”

Newport Centre mall in Jersey City. (Google Maps)
Newport Centre mall in Jersey City. (Google Maps)

Newport Centre has a history of violence

The Newport Centre has seen a fair share of violence in the past.

In 2019, two people were sent to the hospital after a shooting in the mall’s food court.

Ahmad Broadway, then 26, was sentenced to five years in prison for possession of a weapon for unlawful purposes and one year for risking widespread injury or damage, NJ.com reported.

A fight involving a costumed Easter Bunny the the Newport Centre Mall in Jersey City
A fight involving a costumed Easter Bunny the the Newport Centre Mall in Jersey City (@2jrb123 via Twitter)

In 2016, a man working at same mall as a costumed Easter Bunny was involved in a fight with a parent, also caught on video. Both men were arrested.

Erin Vogt is a reporter and anchor for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach her at erin.vogt@townsquaremedia.com

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