Long Island police officer acquitted of assault charges stemming from video of traffic stop

A Long Island police officer who was recorded punching and kicking a man during a traffic stop has been acquitted on all charges.

Nassau County Court Judge Patricia Harrington issued the verdict Friday following a non-jury trial that concluded Nov. 24.

Nassau County Police Officer Vincent LoGiudice (loh-joo-DEES') was accused of beating a motorist, Kyle Howell, while trying to arrest him.

Prosecutors said LoGiudice used excessive force after Howell tried to empty a bag of marijuana hidden in his glove compartment.

Defense attorney William Petrillo said Howell's movements made the officer fear for his safety.

Charges were filed after video of the encounter surfaced.

LoGiudice would have faced up to seven years in prison if convicted of felony assault and one year in prison if convicted of misdemeanor assault.