Eric Kriner, 32, was sentenced Wednesday by Blair County Judge Timothy Sullivan, the Altoona Mirror ( http://bit.ly/Wpy4EO) reported Thursday.
"Nobody—not judges, lawyers, police officers or government officials—are above the law," Sullivan told Kriner.
Another former officer, Duane Eichenlaub, faces sentencing April 29 for his conviction on seven counts, including aggravated assault—a felony—and tampering with public records.
Kriner, who now lives in Brockport, was sentenced after previously pleading guilty to misdemeanor counts of simple assault and conspiracy to obstruct an investigation and testifying against Eichenlaub at his trial in Jaunary.
The state attorney general's office contends Kriner and Eichenlaub beat up Herman "Bo" Lardieri, 40, of Altoona, after he allegedly fondled Eichenlaub's wife under her dress at the bar following a wedding reception in May 2010. A 60-year-old man who tried to break up the fight suffered facial fractures, a concussion and a damaged retina.
The officers had claimed they were made scapegoats for the alleged cover-up, which their attorneys have suggested involved higher ranking officers. Kriner, however, abandoned such claims in pleading guilty and at his sentencing.
The grand jury found that Eichenlaub told the officer who responded to the fight to "make it go away" and that, for a time, the responding officer downplayed Eichenlaub and Kriner's involvement.
The case has been complicated by the fact that the alleged victim, Lardieri, was also convicted of lying to the grand jury convened to sort out the events of that day.
Lardieri is serving 9 to 18 months in jail after being convicted in July for telling the grand jury he hadn't interacted with Eichenlaub's wife that night. The same jury couldn't reach a verdict on a related charge of indecent assault on the alleged fondling.
The other alleged beating victim, Earl Eshelman, now 62, has sued both officers and the owner of the lounge, saying the bartender served the officers drinks after they were visibly intoxicated and that bouncers didn't intervene to stop the beatings.
Eshelman submitted a letter to the judge over injuries to his nose, eyes and brain, which he said continue to cause dizziness, balance problems, and short-term memory loss.
"This life I once had has been viciously taken from me," Eshelman wrote.
Information from: Altoona Mirror, http://www.altoonamirror.com