Ex-police chief accused of hate crime pleads not guilty

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Ex-police chief accused of hate crime pleads not guilty. Sharrie Williams reports during Action News at 4:30 p.m. on December 22, 2017. (WPVI)

A white former police chief charged with a hate crime in New Jersey for smashing a handcuffed black man's head into a doorjamb has pleaded not guilty.

Former Bordentown Township police chief Frank Nucera entered the plea Thursday.

Civil rights and hate crimes charges were announced last month against the 60-year-old Nucera. Authorities say he has a history of using police dogs to intimidate black people and has been secretly recorded making racist comments by one of his officers.

He retired in January amid an FBI investigation.

U.S. Attorney William E. Fitzpatrick called the assault a "clear senseless, bigoted, hate-filled," assault of a prisoner in custody.

Nucera's attorney tells NJ.com the allegations against Nucera are "not pleasant" but they're just allegations.

He says about 100 hours of secret recordings were made.

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Information from: NJ.com, http://www.nj.com

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