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Whitestone NYPD officer surrenders in beating case

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An NYPD officer who resides in Whitestone surrendered himself to the Yorktown Police Department last Thursday, 13 days after he attacked a Westchester man in a fit of fury, authorities said.

Craig Yokemick, 33, who lives on Murray Street just south of 15th Avenue, was arraigned on assault charges before Yorktown Town Judge Jeff Cohen in Yorktown Heights in northern Westchester, said Lt. Anthony Masi with the Yorktown police.

Released on his own recognizance, Yokemick could spend a year in jail if convicted, Masi said.

Yokemick, who works with the Queens warrant squad, was suspended for 30 days without pay following his arraignment, said Officer Louis Camacho, NYPD spokesman.

On April 26, John Richardson, a 34-year-old teacher who lives in Yorktown Heights, returned home at about 7:10 p.m. to find a car sitting in his driveway, Masi said. Yokemick and a female companion were sitting inside, Masi said.

“He arrived home, stopped his vehicle at his mailbox and saw the vehicle parked at the end of the driveway,” Masi said.

Richardson then asked Yokemick, “What are you doing here?” Masi said.

“At that point, Yokemick threatens him, knocks him down and allegedly grabs him by the throat,” Masi alleged.

Yokemick left Richardson in the driveway and headed to dinner with the woman and two friends who live in Yorktown Heights, Masi said.

Richardson was taken to Hudson Valley Hospital Center with a broken and dislocated shoulder, bruises and cuts, Masi said.

Richardson provided the Yorktown police with a detailed description of Yokemick and the car’s license plate number, which eventually led the Westchester police to the NYPD officer, Masi said.

The two men had no relationship whatsoever, and police suspected that Yokemick may have been lost, Masi said.

In 1998, Yokemick killed a fleeing drug suspect by throwing a service radio at his head, the New York Times reported.

A grand jury found that Yokemick had used justifiable force, but the family of the slain man, Kenneth Banks, later settled a wrongful death lawsuit against the city for $1.1 million, the paper said.

Reach reporter Alexander Dworkowitz by e-mail at Timesledger@aol.com or call 229-0300 Ext. 141.

Posted 7:03 pm, October 10, 2011
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