Nutter gives personal apology to woman punched by cop

Supporters of Aida Guzman, who was punched in the mouth by a police lieutenant on Sunday, demonstrate on Friday outside City Hall against police violence.
Supporters of Aida Guzman, who was punched in the mouth by a police lieutenant on Sunday, demonstrate on Friday outside City Hall against police violence. (PHOTOS: RYAN S. GREENBERG/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER)
Posted: October 07, 2012

AIDA GUZMAN, the woman now widely known for being punched in the face by a veteran Philly cop, visited City Hall Friday to receive a personal apology from Mayor Nutter.

Guzman, 39, of Chester, still had a bruised lip from the blow by Lt. Jonathan D. Josey II during a Puerto Rican Day celebration on Sunday in North Philadelphia. Her attorney, Enrique Latoison, called the 15-minute private sit-down with the mayor a "heartfelt meeting."

Nutter had already publicly apologized for the attack, which was captured on video and quickly went viral online. But he said he wanted to give that message to Guzman personally.

"I wanted to see her . . . I did apologize to her, again," Nutter told reporters. "This is about a person. This about a human being who had been injured here in our city in a very graphic way, and I wanted to take a moment when the opportunity presented itself, just to talk to her."

Josey has been suspended with intent to dismiss. A police investigation will be submitted to the district attorney next week to be reviewed for criminal charges.

Latoison said Guzman has not decided whether to sue the city. But she did say that Guzman would never again attend the Puerto Rican Day festivities.

Shortly after Guzman spoke with Nutter, a crowd of protesters gathered outside City Hall expressing outrage over the attack and how the city is dealing with it.

"It's disgusting what happened," said Damaris Martinez, 56, of North Philadelphia. "How are we going to teach our children to respect authorities if they're not respecting us?"

Martinez said she wanted criminal charges filed against Josey and said he should make a public apology.

"He deserves to go to jail for what he did," Martinez said. "He needs to apologize."


Contact Jan Ransom at ransomj@phillynews.com.

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