Huntington, West Virginia – A law firm posted a video of an intoxicated man drinking beer in the street who was taken to the ground by a police officer. (Video below)
The video was posted by the Weston Robertson Law firm in what may be an attempt to pressure the city to pay a settlement. The video was posted on Aug. 25 and has 762,000 views and has been shared 7,747 times as of Aug. 31.
Although the video is getting a lot of attention now, Huntington Police Department said that the video was from a 2015 incident.
In the video, the unidentified man takes a swig of beer as the police officer approaches. The officer says, “That’s the last of it,” as he takes the man arms and begins to try to put handcuffs on him.
An edited video posted on the New York Post website says in all caps that “OUT OF NOWHERE” the cop “BODY-SLAMMED HIM TO THE GROUND” in a video titled “Drunk civilian body-slammed by cop twice his size.”
In reality, while the man was initially compliant, he could be seen beginning to pull away from the officer. The man then tried to wrestle his right arm away from the officer and started to turn towards him.
This is active resistance. It’s common and reasonable to take people to the ground who are actively resisting. Other force alternatives with active resistance include knee/elbow strikes, baton strikes, pepper spray, or Taser use. A takedown is one of the methods least-likely to cause injury.
The officer calmly swept the man’s legs to take him to the ground. Unfortunately, the man hit his head when he hit the ground.
While hitting someone’s head is a possibility during a takedown, it isn’t common. It appears that the officer’s hold prevented the man from breaking his fall.
The law firm claims that the man is now their client.
The law firm asked for comments and received more than 9,400.
“The cop was trying to put on the cuffs and the drunk wasn’t allowing him to do so,” wrote an Edward Ramos on the law firm’s Facebook wall.
“Just made news in the U.K.,” wrote a Jagtar Singh. “That is assault in any civilized country, I hope he is investigated by Internal Affairs, and the police dept is sued.”
“If subject wouldn’t stood still and let the cop put the cuffs on that would not have occurred,” said a Trina Marie. “Doubt the cop meant for him to smack his head like that but he could’ve prevented it with his own behavior. Unfortunate.”
A Noelle Tagliarini posted: “Are you kidding me??? That was completely unnecessary!!! Bye bye piggie! Go do some other job that suits your psychotic behavior …”
You can see the video below: