NYPD officer cleared of alleged assault on customer causing mayhem outside store


The NYPD officer who was accused of punching an erratic man, who was reportedly harassing customers outside an Apple Store nearly three years ago, has been cleared of all charges, the Police Benevolent Association (PBA) of the City of New York announced on Thursday. 

The PBA said a Manhattan judge found New York City Police Officer Salvatore Provenzano not guilty of assault for a single punch he threw to protect himself from a repeat offender causing mayhem in an Upper West Side Apple Store back in 2021. 

“We’re grateful that the judge in this case [made] the right and only decision to find our police officer not guilty,” PBA President Patrick Hendry said following the ruling. 

Provenzano was indicted by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office in July 2023, and suspended without pay, despite the fact that the suspect was not injured and two security guards, who were eyewitnesses, were never called to testify before the grand jury.

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PBA President Patrick Hendry

An NYPD officer accused of punching an unruly man inside an Upper West Side Apple Store three years ago has been cleared of the charges, police union reps announced Thursday.  (X/@NYCPBA)

Hendry added that despite having Provenzano cleared, the case should never have been in a courtroom because it did not fit the prosecutors’ narrative. 

“This was never about fairness or justice, this was about derailing a hardworking police officer. That’s what this case was about, from the beginning,” Hendry explained. 

Hendry said the man Provenzano was accused of assaulting had been banned from the Apple Store, as well as another one, for threatening security in the store, throwing himself on the floor and refusing to leave for over 30 minutes, causing chaos. 

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Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg leaves 80 Centre St. in NYC after speaking during a press conference, Feb. 8, 2024. (Barry Williams for NY Daily News via Getty Images)

Other officers who witnessed the altercation reportedly tried to intervene and reason with the man, but it did no good. 

“Police Officer Provenzano was simply doing his job, trying to protect himself and the public from an individual who has repeatedly caused mayhem in places of business. We’re grateful that the court recognized that reality and acquitted him, but unfortunately a lot of damage has been done,” Hendry said.

The police union called prosecuting Provenzano a waste of time.

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“A good, hardworking cop has been sidelined for nearly a year, and police officers across this borough are wondering if their careers will also be derailed by baseless charges. Manhattan prosecutors need to stop wasting time and resources targeting cops over nonsense and start working with us to address real public safety issues,” Hendry said. 

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.



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