Police use pushups to punish suspected vandals, video shows

| Monday, Nov. 26, 2012, 8:20 p.m.

NORTH PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Four police officers in Rhode Island are being investigated for making five boys do pushups on the side of a street as punishment for damaging a mailbox.

Acting North Providence Police Chief Paul Martellini said a woman called police Friday morning to report her mailbox was damaged. Officers soon found a bright yellow sports car that matched the description, he said. Several teenagers were inside.

A neighbor videotaped the stop from across the street and posted it online.

Martellini said he has ordered an internal investigation and would not immediately comment on whether the officers' actions were appropriate. He said he heard from many people during the weekend about whether the officers' actions were appropriate.

“Some people say it's the right thing to do. Some people say it's the wrong thing to do. The question is, was it the professional thing to do?” he said.

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