VINELAND — Footage from body cameras worn by two police officers shows an arrest in the Inspira Medical Center parking lot that left a 59-year-old city man in critical condition with a head injury earlier this month.
William “Bill” Oslin remains hospitalized at Cooper University Medical Center in Camden following his Jan. 12 arrest by police. Michael Schwartz, an attorney hired by Oslin’s family, said Oslin suffered a head injury and has been unable to speak since the arrest.
The Cumberland County Prosecutor’s Office said it is investigating an officer involved in the Jan. 12 incident but would not identify the officer. Vineland police declined to comment, referring requests to the Prosecutor’s Office.
Earlier this week, the Prosecutor’s Office released videos from the cameras of two responding officers in response to an Open Public Records Act request filed by The Press of Atlantic City.
One video, which is almost nine minutes long, contains footage from the camera of Officer Anthony Capelli, who was the first to respond to the scene. The other video, which is almost three minutes long, comes from the camera of Officer Jeffery Rowan.
In the first video, provided by Capelli’s camera, Oslin is seen sitting alone on a grassy curb in the center’s parking lot until getting up to walk over to Rowan and a woman Oslin identified as his girlfriend. Capelli follows Oslin, calling his name and grabbing his arm from behind. Oslin’s body blocks the camera for about 20 seconds until he is suddenly moved toward the sidewalk.
In video provided by Rowan’s body camera, Capelli can be seen holding Oslin’s shoulders from behind, and the two stand together while the woman talks to Oslin. When Oslin raises his arms and lunges toward the woman, Capelli spins Oslin away and drags him to the ground so Capelli lands on top of Oslin.
Oslin does not struggle in the videos while Capelli handcuffs him and Rowan, along with an unidentified hospital worker, holds him down. Capelli is then heard in the video calling for EMS. Blood can be seen pooling around Oslin’s head onto the sidewalk when officers roll him onto his side.
Rowan stated in an affidavit he arrived about 2:30 p.m. to assist Capelli in an alleged domestic dispute and that Oslin was “clearly intoxicated from alcohol.”
And in Capelli’s video, Oslin is seen drinking from a small bottle, smoking a cigarette and talking on the phone while Capelli questions him.
Jonathan James, Schwartz’s partner, said they don’t dispute Oslin’s intoxication. They said Oslin’s girlfriend had dropped him off at the center for detox treatment.
Schwartz, however, questioned the officers’ reporting of the arrest. Officers did not document any injuries in their initial reports, according to the affidavit filed that day. In the section where an officer must provide the extent of an injury if applicable, Rowan listed “no injuries.”
“Clearly there were injuries. I don’t know where they get that from,” said Schwartz, “and certainly that’s going to be part of what we’re looking into — the why and how.”
Schwartz said they are focusing on seeing Oslin through his medical procedures until he is able to communicate directly.
Executive Assistant Prosecutor Kevin Guinan said the footage has not been edited for content but does blur certain portions to protect the identity of non-law enforcement witnesses.