Ocean Beach Fire Island Police Brutality
Ocean Beach Police Brutality Page Two

Gilberd's wife called a private ambulance to take him to St. Vincent's
Hospital in New York City where  Gilberd was rushed into surgery immediately upon the arrival of a veteran Urologist who had to be called in from his vacation to perform the surgery.  Gilberd's intestines were found to be falling into his bladder, he was bleeding internally and was in Intensive Care for 24 hours.

One of Gilberd's nurses was quoted as saying "In 25 years I have only seen those types of injuries in severe car accidents" 

Gilberd remained in the hospital for 10 days before he was released.

Seven days after the beating, in an effort to cover up their heinous crime, the police department filed malicious and false criminal summons against Gilberd for "Disorderly Conduct" and "Resisting Arrest"

In October of 2006, all criminal charges were dropped against the man, a clear
indication that the criminal charges were illegitimate.  According to Gilberd's criminal attorney Robert Gottlieb, "The Suffolk DA is not in the habit of dropping charges unless they think the facts warrant it," Gottlieb said. "So their decision speaks much louder than anything I can say."

 A December 19, 2006 article in Newsday reported that the Suffolk County District Attorney's office is now investigating the alleged brutality and other questionable activities in the police department of Ocean Beach. 

The investigation is the first of a police department by Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota since taking office in 2001. In an interview, he asked that anyone who experienced or witnessed excessive force to contact his office.

"I have serious concerns about the conduct and supervision of the Ocean Beach
police department," Spota said. "And as a consequence, I'm going to ask a grand jury to conduct a robust probe into all aspects of this police department so that we can get to the bottom of what's occurring there."


On March 27, 2007, the Suffolk County District Attorney announced the arrest and indictment of four Ocean Beach village police officers, including acting Chief of Police George Hesse, on charges related to the beating.

 In addition to first-degree assault and one count of first-degree gang assault against Hesse, each charge a "B" violent felony punishable by a maximum sentence of up to 25 years in prison, the indictment contained charges of offering a false instrument, hindering prosecution, issuing a false certificate, falsifying business records, and conspiracy, which centered around an attempted coverup of the beating by Hesse and the other three officers.

 District Attorney Spota said the department has attempted "to stonewall our investigation from the outset", and that police officers lied to DA detectives during the probe.  The investigation centers on alleged criminal conduct going back as far as the mid 1990's, the district attorney said, adding that "today's arraignments are the culmination of the first phase of the investigation".  The district said investigators in the government corruption bureau recently received 1,200 pages of records subpoenaed from Ocean Beach Village and police department files.

When asked to describe the situation in recent years in Ocean Beach, the district attorney, citing the village's history of settling lawsuits filed against members of its police department "quietly and confidentially", called on the village board to look closely at the reported incidents of police brutality.  "Sticking your head in the sand is not a proper response, Spota said.

"Someone on the village board should have said somewhere along the line 'Something is wrong here; let's take a look at it."  "The assaults against village visitors were settled out of court, but that doesn't relieve the village government's responsibility to be a watchdog of its police department," Spota said.   


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