A dashcam video of a traffic stop, which shows a white cop punching a black man, contradicts what Ohio police have previously said about the August 12 incident in Euclid.
The video shows the officer with a history of disciplinary issues repeatedly punching Richard Hubbard III after his car was stopped by police officers who then ordered him to get off the vehicle.
His car was pulled over on suspicion of having a suspended driver’s license, according to the initial statement from police in the Cleveland suburb of Euclid.
The statement also added that he refused orders given by Officer Michael Amiott to “face away,” after he got out of the car.
However, the video obtained this week in a public records request shows that Amiott did not give Hubbard even a chance to comply, Hubbard’s attorney said Friday.
“Your own two eyes and common sense can lead to only one reasonable conclusion as to the propriety of the level of force used for a basic traffic stop and whether or not my client had a chance to comply,” attorney Christopher McNeal said.
Almost a second after Amiott gave Hubbard the order, the video shows the officer grabbing Hubbard’s arms and wrestled him to the ground in the middle of a street.
Amiott is shown bashing Hubbard’s head against the pavement several times and then starting to punch him in the head more than a dozen times while Hubbard is trying to defend himself.
His girlfriend, who jumped out of the car to calm down the officers, told them that Hubbard is unarmed.
The 25-year-old man was finally handcuffed with the help of another officer and then taken to jail.
Later, he was examined and then released but was charged with resisting arrest and driving with a suspended license, police said.
The police union that represents Amiott said they “stand with Officer Amiott,” expressing hope that “people will not rush to judgment, but rather will understand the literally-split-second decision and response required of our police and will let the administrative review process play out.”
Meanwhile, the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio and the Cleveland branch of the NAACP issued a statement saying they are “profoundly concerned.”
“We are appalled by the brutality seen in these videos,” ACLU Executive Director J. Bennett Guess said. “This behavior underscores a disturbing pattern of extreme use of force by police in our state and across our nation.”
US police have been criticized, on numerous occasions, for brutally treating people of color, including African Americans and so far there have many mass protests against police brutality across the country.