NEW YORK, NY – Prosecutor Samantha Turino pointed to undercover NYPD officer Wojciech Braszczok (32) as one of the bikers who participated in last week’s beating and menacing of Alexian Lien, his wife Rosalyn Ng, and their 2-year old daughter.
Two Incidents of Biker-Related Violence Last Week
The incident in question was started when Lien’s black SUV ran over several bikers resulting in a number of the bikers chasing Lien down. Once he was cornered, the bikers pulled Lien from his SUV and proceeded to beat him.
An attempt was made to pull Lien’s wife from the vehicle, but it was thwarted as several bystanders shouted at the attackers. So far, seven bikers have been charged with the attack on Alexian Lien.
One of the bikers, Edwin Mieses, received spinal injuries. His family has said that it’s possible he’ll never walk again.
The prosecuting side’s story has the bikers driving aggressively and bumping into the SUV. One of the bikers said that Lien was driving aggressively and even threw a water bottle at the riders.
That was when Kevin Bresloff, a biker riding with the group, turned on his helmet camera and caught the widely circulated footage.
Wojciech Braszczok has been charged with first degree gang assault, first degree assault, and third degree criminal mischief.
During arraignment, Samantha Turino, Assistant District Attorney, laid out the situation saying that the riders were “driving recklessly, obstructing vehicle traffic, running red lights, swerving between lanes.”
She pointed out that Christopher Cruz—believed to be the instigator of the whole thing—slowed down in front of Alexian Lien’s SUV and was bumped. The bikers became aggressive and slashed Lien’s tires which resulted in him speeding through the bikers and hitting a few of them.
When the charges were read, prosecutor Turino said that incident could be described as “a brutal and brazen attack on the driver and his family, in which the defendant is an active participant.”
Turino also said that Braszczok and other charged attackers “stomped on, kicked and hit him with helmets until he appeared to lose consciousness.”
The Assistant District Attorney also pointed out that there was a 2-year old child in the SUV during the attack and that Braszczok menaced Lien’s wife during the attack. He also shattered the rear window of the SUV.
The attorney for Braszczok, John Arlia, said that his client wasn’t involved in the attack and that deciding to go after Lien as he ran over several riders doesn’t mean a crime was committed.
Arlia also raised the question of if Braszczok actually committed any of the acts that Turino is charging him with. He pointed to footage from the incident as proof that Braszczok never got close to Lien.
“It’s an absolute overcharge. He is in no way near Lien and doesn’t join the others. They can’t prove it,” Arlia said.
Braszczok’s bail was set at a $150,000 bond or $100,000 cash.
There was another undercover officer riding with Wojciech Braszczok, but details haven’t released about him nor is it known if he participated in the attack.
Braszczok informed his superiors of the incident and that he was in the aggressive party of bikers until two days afterwards.
Another participant in the attack was charged as 32-year old Brooklyn resident Clint Caldwell saw charges on first degree gang assault and first degree assault. Turino said that the video shows Caldwell punching Lien through the broken window “at least two times.”
Caldwell’s lawyer Raymond L. Colon said that the footage would show his client opening the door of the SUV, but not striking Lien.
“He asks him to pull over, shut the engine,” Colon said. “Lien just struck a couple of motorcyclists. And that’s all he did. There’s no contact. You’ll clearly see from the video he doesn’t reach into the window. There is another individual standing next to him that does.”
James Kuehne (31) is another Brooklyn resident and was charged with gang assault, criminal mischief, and possession of a weapon. Christopher Cruz (28) is also being charged.
Erin Duggan, a spokeswoman for the Manhattan DA’s office, said “In the last few days, serious charges have been brought against several defendants in last Sunday’s attack. As we said from the beginning of the investigation, the NYPD and the District Attorney’s Office are methodically scrutinizing the evidence to build the strongest possible cases in our continuing effort to hold accountable those responsible.”
With Cruz, Braszczok, Kuehne, and Caldwell, the other three being charged are Robert Sims (35), Reginald Chance (37) who is being held on $75,000 bond, and Craig Wright (29).
While Chance and Sims were introduced yesterday, Wright—a resident of Brooklyn—is somewhat of a newer face. He is charged with first degree unlawful imprisonment, gang assault, and assault.
Wright has a criminal background that includes a 2005 run-in for reckless driving. New York Trial Court authority Judge Tamiko Amaker has set Craig Wright’s upcoming court date for Friday.
The man who shot the original footage, Kevin Bresloff, hasn’t been charged with anything and is cooperating with law enforcement.