Buffalo police officer Cedric Littlejohn is under investigation by the department's Internal Affairs division. Eyewitnesses say the 20-year veteran assaulted a man in a fit of road rage.
In digging for information, 7 Eyewitness News has discovered a total of 79 internal investigations and complaints have been filed against the Buffalo Police Department, since January alone. This latest investigation stems from the officer's own reporting, in what one man is calling a cover up by the Buffalo police.
Shards of glass are still stuck in a rubber ring. The shattered glass is a remnant of what "JC" says was a violent attack on Michigan Avenue, in February.
"JC" agreed to tell us his story, but asked we not use his full name.
"There was a vehicle tailgating the back end of my truck, close enough where I couldn't even see the front of the car or anything," JC said.
JC says he tapped his brakes two different times, before he says Littlejohn drove around him.
"He flew around me, parked his car kind of sideways, almost into the intersection there at Michigan and Riley. [He] jumped out of his vehicle and started coming back to me," JC said. "He grabbed a hold of me by the throat, slammed my head into the side of my truck about three times, breaking the window out."
An eyewitness told 7 Eyewitness News, "The rubber piece of the vehicle itself, became a necklace for the guy."
Things got worse, according to the eyewitness, when JC went to call 911.
The eyewitness asked not to be identified because of his ties to law enforcement.
"As soon as he said, 'I'm calling the cops,' the guy in the gray car said, 'I am a cop'," the eyewitness said.
Police say it was actually a black car, driven by Littlejohn who was off-duty at the time. Littlejohn is assigned to the B-District station, according to a police spokesman.
According to the eyewitness, Littlejohn drove away from the scene before police arrived.
Still, Officer Littlejohn filed a reckless endangerment police report against JC. Reckless endangerment is a misdemeanor crime. The maximum punishment in New York State is one-year in jail, a $1,000 fine and/or three years probation.
Littlejohn claims JC "slam(med) on his breaks" in front of him and "almost caused an accident." That, Littlejohn said, caused the confrontation. It was a fight, he says, where both men pushed one another. The officer noted this all happened while the officer's 6-year-old daughter was in the car.
The eyewitness said there is a big difference between what he saw and what's written in the report. "The difference is he made himself a victim. We saw what looks like a bad case of road rage," the eyewitness said.
But Littlejohn's report makes no mention of claims, JC's head was slammed through the window. "He's lying on a police report which, pardon my language, he's just trying to save his own ass," the eyewitness said.
"These guys are supposed to protect and serve us and, you know, I'm being assaulted and then to me it seems there's a big cover up," JC said.
Buffalo police would not comment on this case, beyond saying Littlejohn is under investigation.
7 Eyewitness News found the officer pulling up to his home, in the same car listed in the police report he filed. 7 Eyewitness News reporter Ed Drantch asked the officer about what happened.
"I cant talk about that sir, sorry," Littlejohn said.
Drantch asked if Littlejohn slammed someone's head through a window. "No, sir," Littlejohn said. "Sir, I can't talk about that you have to talk to my department about that."
Drantch followed up asking if the officer was denying he slammed a man's head through a window. The officer responded, "You've got to talk to my department about that," before he walked into his house and closed the door.
JC says he's already been interviewed by Internal Affairs officers.
"Just that once," JC said. "He's supposed to conduct himself better than that whether he's on duty or off."
"He doesn't deserve to be a cop," said the eyewitness with ties to law enforcement.
Despite the allegations and the internal investigation, Littlejohn is still on the streets, working without any restrictions.
"Well actually, it kind of scares the hell out of me, because you know, who knows what else he can do," the alleged victim said.
Even though he filed the reckless endangerment report, which witnesses say excludes a lot of information, Littlejohn said he did not want to file charges against JC.
There is no word when Internal Affairs officers will conclude their investigation into Cedric Littlejohn.