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TV CAMERAMAN APOLOGIZES FOR HITTING POLICE OFFICER

A WGRZ-TV Channel 2 cameraman has apologized to the Buffalo Police Department for hitting a Broadway Station lieutenant with his camera, City Court officials said Friday.

As part of a plea deal, Rickie McMillan admitted he hit Lt. Mark Michalek with a camera last March at Wilson and Genesee streets where two police officers in an unmarked car were seriously injured in an accident.

Michalek was clearing a path through a crowd of people to make room for an ambulance transporting one of the injured officers when McMillan refused to move and struck the lieutenant, authorities said.

"I'd like to apologize to the Buffalo Police Department for all the inconvenience I've caused," McMillan said, facing several officers, including Michalek, who were in the courtroom last week.

In pleading guilty to harassment, the 40-year-old Buffalo resident was sentenced to a conditional discharge requiring him to stay out of trouble with the law for one year.

If he breaks the law during that time, he will face 15 days in jail, according to Assistant District Attorney Lyn Reda, who prosecuted the case until McMillan, in the third day of the trial, requested the plea deal.

He originally was charged with resisting arrest, obstructing governmental administration and harassment. McMillan could not be reached Friday to comment.

Capt. James F. Cudney, commander of the Broadway Station, said the lieutenant acted properly in the midst of a chaotic situation.

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