MIAMI BEACH–A pair of Toronto sisters have agreed to serve 25 hours each of community service to settle misdemeanor charges stemming from a heated Christmastime encounter with Miami Beach police.
Angelina and Michele Mastrangelo have never denied yelling at or cursing at the officers. But they claim officers incited the dispute, humiliating them and roughing them up.
“They disrespected us, and that’s the only reason we disrespected them,” Angelina said before her case was heard in a Miami Beach court Thursday morning.
Maintaining they were wrongfully arrested, the sisters launched a complaint against the police department.
But following an internal investigation, Det. Vivian Hernandez said police have determined that there was no wrongdoing on the part of the officers.
Hernandez said surveillance video footage from the police station where the sisters were processed following their arrest – which shows the women dancing – proves that they were not behaving appropriately.
“It appears as if it was a joke to them,” said Hernandez, who released the video footage to Torstar News Service.
But according to the sisters, the video is one-sided because it does not include sound, so the public is unable to hear the taunts they say they endured.
Angelina said they got up to dance in response to being teased.
“They were all making fun of us, calling us fat, so we got up and danced to show them that we didn’t give a s—,” she said.
They have 90 days to complete their community service hours, which can be served at a non-profit in Canada.