Human Rights

Florida Cops Accused of Attacking Ex-NYPD Officer Who Was Helping Her Son

After forcing her onto the ground, one of them said, ‘We’re a little different in Florida."

Retired New York City police officer Rosemary Aquino accused sheriff’s deputies in Martin County, Florida of attacking her while visiting one of her sons following an auto accident, WPEC-TV reported on Tuesday.

Aquino’s older son, 27-year-old Jonathan Rosado, filmed her argument with deputies after being handcuffed on Sunday near the scene of the accident.

“NYPD, I know my rights,” Aquino says while laying facedown in a grassy area.

“We’re a little different in Florida,” one deputy replies.

Aquino told WPEC that her younger son, 16-year-old Bryan Molaro, contacted her after his car lost a tire as a result of the accident. She told him to call 911 for assistance. She arrived at the scene after both the deputies and officers from the Stuart Police Department, she said, and went to hug her son when she was accosted by the deputies.

“One of the officers grabbed me and said, ‘You need to move your car now.’ I said, ‘First of all don’t touch me. I am going to my car now,’” Aquino said. “And so another came up from behind me as I was walking, shoved me from behind, pushed me, and as he was pushing me said, ‘get your f*cking ass in the car, now!’”

When Aquino, a 15-year NYPD veteran, questioned the deputy’s language, she said one of them “took his foot and then knocked me down, face-first into the grass.”

The video shows Aquino yelling in pain as deputies attempt to move her. Rosado tells them, “She’s got fibrof*ckingmyalgia. Let go of her, right now.”

Molaro later told WPEC he was arrested after following his mother’s instructions to get a pen and paper and write down the names of the deputies involved in the encounter. Both Molaro and his mother were charged with resisting arrest and are currently free on bond.

Chief Deputy Glen Theobald said his officers showed restraint during the incident.

“Based on the report, she was resisting. She was flailing her arms and she needed to be controlled,” Theobald said. “You don’t see what happened before that or what precipitated that arrest, and based on the information from the report, the deputy repeatedly asked the woman to step away from the street, move from off of the roadway.”

Rosado’s video of the arrest is posted online.

Arturo R. García is the managing editor at His work has appeared on, the Root and Comment Is Free. Follow him on Twitter at @ABoyNamedArt.
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