Cop accused of telling suspect: Welcome to white man’s world

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) — A federal indictment alleges two Massachusetts police officers used excessive force during the arrest of two Latino teenagers in 2016.

Federal prosecutors say Gregg Bigda and Steven Vigneault were arrested Wednesday and are expected to appear later in the day in federal court in Springfield.

According to the indictment, Bigda spat on one teen and said: “Welcome to the white man’s world.” Bigda is also accused of threatening the youths during a subsequent interrogation and falsifying a police report.

Vigneault is charged with using unreasonable force against the second teen.

Prosecutors say both boys were injured in the confrontation, which occurred in Palmer following a pursuit that began in Springfield.

Vigneault retired in 2016. Bigda remains an officer after serving a 60-day suspension. Messages left with attorneys for the men were not returned.

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