Pepper Spray Suit Settled in Saratoga Springs
The pepper spraying case against a Saratoga Springs officer is settled. It only cost the department $50,000.
Nathan Baker was suspended after pepper spraying a motorist for flipping him the bird.
Adam Rupeka was pulled over over in May, after demonstrating his first Amendment rights, giving the cop the finger. When Rupeka asked what crime he had committed, the officer asked him to step out of the vehicle. Rupeka again, asked why he was pulled over and Baker pepper sprayed him in the face. The entire incident was caught on Rupeka’s dashboard camera.
Rupeka was arrested for resisting arrest, and ticketed for an obstructed view for having the camera on the dash. Although the charges were dismissed he declared "I’m going to sue the S*** out of you guys.”
Sue he did, and the city settled.
Several news organizations, including the Times Union, filed a Freedom of Information Law request, for details on the agreement which reads:
"It is understood and agreed that this settlement is the compromise of a disputed claim, and that the payment made is not to be construed as an admission or indication of liability on the part of the city. Rupeka and his attorney would "agree to keep the amount of the settlement confidential, and further agree not to disclose to any person or entity the amount of the settlement, or any other details about the resolution of this disputed claim, except upon the lawful order of the court for competent jurisdiction."
Police Chief Gregory Vietch tells the Times Union, "the job of a police officer is not to drive around delivering attitude adjustments to those citizens who show unmistakable signs of being in need of one."
Officer Baker has since resigned from the department.