Cop Who Tasered Israel Hernandez Was Once Accused of Tasering, Beating Iraq War Veteran
|Anti-police graffiti near where Hernandez was killed|
Mercado and another concert-goer, Juan Dapena, got into an argument in the bathroom at the Dade County Auditorium. Mercado accidentally bumped into Dapena's wife on the way to the restroom. Dapena followed him there, calling Mercado a "dirty-ass pig" and demanding an apology. Both men were at least three beers deep.
Dapena accused Mercado of punching him twice in the face, breaking his nose, then using "some type of martial arts move and flipped him onto the restroom floor" until fellow cops came.
Mercado admitted to punching Dapena but said he felt threatened after the man angrily approached him from behind as he was taking a piss. Mercado was exonerated.
Most recently, Mercado arrested 59-year-old Ines Flax after she tried to get to her home at 1500 Ocean Drive during Memorial Day weekend 2012.
Flax had already been driving in circles for half an hour because of police traffic loops when she spotted Mercado manning a barricade at 16th Street and Alton Road.
She tried unsuccessfully to get his attention to ask if she could turn onto 16th Street. "Mrs. Flax stated that she was frustrated and just wanted to get home, but Officer Mercado didn't care," the report says.
Terrence McCoy Another anti-police graffito in North Beach
So she called MBPD's non-emergency hotline and asked for help. The operator told to approach Mercado and show him her local ID.
But when she got out of her car, Mercado arrested her.
Flax was released on a promise to appear, and the charges were later dropped. The IA complaint against Mercado, meanwhile, was unsubstantiated.
The lengthiest IA case is a 2008 investigation into overtime abuses by Miami Beach Police officers. Mercado was one of nine officers investigated after an internal audit discovered that his Crime Suppression Team (CST) had been paid overtime for 29 months costing $583,544.
Police investigators concluded that no theft had occurred, but did punish two of Mercado's sergeants for poor supervision. No criminal charges were filed.