“This inmate was cowering under a blanket in the corner of his cell,” Pisciotta recalled in an interview this week. “He was an older man, very frail and mentally ill. He wasn’t trying to fight anybody. He was just scared. He was no threat to anyone.”
He saw everything that happened, and wrestled with what to do.
“I knew that it was morally wrong. They wanted us to prepare statements and not say anything. I told them I just couldn’t go along with it,” said Pisciotta, 41.
Pisciotta told the truth, and Wilson was arrested. After testifying against Wilson, Pisciotta was fired and lost almost everything: his home, his friends, his pension and his career.
“I knew once I did the right thing, and I stepped forward...my career would be over,” Pisciotta told a jury during Wilson’s 2009 federal criminal trial. “It’s something you don’t do. You don’t go against other officers. Because my life has been a living hell ever since.’’