Police Officer Sentenced to 30 Months For Civil Rights Violation
In a disturbing surveillance video, Honolulu police officer Vincent Morre is seen attacking two men in a game room in September 5, 2014. The unprovoked attack injured one victim so badly that he suffered head lacerations and a broken bone in his hand.
In May 2015, Morre was charged with two counts of deprivation of rights under color of law, a federal civil rights violation offense. Morre plead guilty to the two courts. On October 15, 2015, federal district court Judge J. Michael Seabright sentenced Morre to 30 months in prison. If he stood trial and was convicted, Morre could have been sentenced to 10 years. He will report to prison after the holidays.
“According to information presented to the court, Morre, then a 10 year veteran of the Honolulu Police Department, was searching for a fugitive when he entered a game room on Hopaka Street. Once in the game room, Morre, in an unprovoked attack, kicked J.T. in the head. Morre then continued to search the game room for the fugitive. On his way out, Morre reapproached J.T. but first struck F.F. (who was seated next to J.T) in the face twice and then kicked his chest. Morre then continued the assault on J.T. by kicking J.T. off his chair. As Morre was leaving the game room, he threw a metal stool which hit J.T. in the head, requiring three stitches. Five days later, Morre filed a false police report omitting that he had assaulted J.T. or F.F.”
In a statement, Deputy Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta, who is head of the Civil Rights Division, stated:
“When this defendant violated the trust of the people he was sworn to serve, the Department of Justice stood ready to enforce the law and protect the civil rights of all Americans. “
While in court testifying, one of the victims was arrested in the courtroom for an outstanding warrant. The victim feels that the manner of his arrest was retaliation for his cooperation with prosecutors.
KITV television reports that in June, 2015, Joseph Becera, who was a reserve officer accompanying officer Morre during the assault, plead guilty for not reporting the assault and lying when FBI agents questioned him. He faces a maximum 3-year sentence for failing to report and a maximum of 5 years for lying. Another officer, Nelson Tamayori, is scheduled to plead guilty for failing to report the assault.