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Today's Top News
Occupy Wall St. Pepper-Spray Cop Anthony Bologna Loses 10 Vacation Days for Violating NYPD Rules
NEW YORK - NYPD Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna was disciplined Tuesday for pepper-spraying two female protesters in the notorious YouTube video seen around the world.
The NYPD found that Bologna violated departmental guidelines and docked him 10 vacation days, or the equivalent amount of pay, police sources said.
The 29-year veteran makes $154,300 a year.
Protesters had demanded Bologna be arrested for spraying two penned-in women in the face and then quickly striding away during a Sept. 24 protest near Union Square.
Bologna's actions appeared unprovoked, and other cops at the scene were recorded expressing amazement at what he did. Video of that moment - which was viewed more than 3 million times on YouTube and played over and over on TV - helped turn Occupy Wall Street into a global phenomenon.
News of the punishment broke as protesters were marching on Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr.'s office to demand a crackdown on police brutality. They broke into cheers, then chants of "Fire Bologna! Fire Bologna!"
"It's a great step," said Vocal New York community organizer Alfredo Carrasquillo.
Bologna was disciplined one day after prominent defense lawyer Ron Kuby brought one of the victims, 24-year-old Albany teacher's aide Kaylee Dedrick, to meet with Vance's investigators.
Kuby didn't think much of Bologna's punishment.
"Frankly, I don't want him to lose any vacation days at all. That means he spends more time on the job with an even bigger attitude," Kuby said. "I think he needs a very long rest someplace quiet and stress-free."
Bologna's union reps said he was "disappointed."
"His actions prevented further injury and escalation of tumultuous conduct," said Roy Richter of the NYPD Captains Endowment Association.
Occupy Wall Street began its second month with forays uptown, including a gathering at Lincoln Center to support the Granny Peace Brigade.
Tuesday night, a group of 200 laid siege to a glitzy Huffington Post party in SoHo, believing Gov. Cuomo was inside, and chanting that he was "protecting the 1%."
Feminist writer Naomi Wolf, a guest, and a male companion were later arrested after she encouraged protesters to demonstrate on the sidewalk in front of the Skylight Soho club. As she was being led away in handcuffs, she told police, "It's our First Amendment right. The sidewalk is a public place."
Shortly after midnight, actor Alec Baldwin showed up at Zuccotti Park.
"You slept here for two days?" he asked Nina Montgomery, 18.
"I slept like a baby," she answered. "I woke up with cameras in my face. Maybe you're used to that, but I'm not."
Baldwin stuck around for an hour holding court at a press table and talking politics with protesters.
"One thing I would like to see is all student loans forgiven," he told one group. "I'd love to see what the effect would be on the economy if we pardoned all these loans."
With Lore Croghan and Kerry Wills