Michael Ackerman, NYPD Cop, Indicted On Charges Of Lying About Photographer's Arrest

08/27/2013 10:58 am ET

A Bronx police officer was arrested Monday for falsifying paperwork in the arrest of a New York Times photojournalist.

CBS New York reports that 30-year-old Michael Ackerman was charged with "tampering with public records, offer file false instrument, falsifying business records, official misconduct, and making a false written statement."

In 2012, Ackerman was allegedly involved in the reportedly violent arrest of New York Times photographer Robert Stolarik. Stolarik had been in the Bronx on a stop-and-frisk assignment when he saw a teenage girl getting arrested. When he started to take photos, a cop told him to stop. Stolarik showed his press credentials and then continued to click away.

Stolarik said cops then pushed his camera into his face, before they "dragged him to the ground" and "kicked [him] in the back," resulting in "scrapes and bruises" on his limbs and face.

Cops confiscated Stolarik's cameras.

Cops accused Stolarik of "inadvertently" hitting a cop in the face with a camera and “violently resisted being handcuffed.” All charges against him were later dismissed, his cameras were returned, and his press credentials restored.

The officer, Michael Ackermann, 30, claimed that the photographer interfered with an arrest last year of a teenage girl by repeatedly discharging his camera’s flash in Officer Ackermann’s face. But the officer’s account unraveled after the office of Robert T. Johnson, the Bronx district attorney, examined photographic evidence and determined that the photographer, Robert Stolarik, did not use a flash and did not have one on his camera at the time. Prosecutors added that no other police officers or civilian witnesses reported seeing a flash.

Ackerman could face up to seven years in prison, according to The New York Post.

Stolarik was also involved in another confrontation with police during the height of Occupy Wall Street.

CONVERSATIONS