Video that shows a police officer repeatedly kicking a man sitting on a curb is not enough for a suspension, says the Orlando, Fla., police chief, CNN reports. Police Chief John Mina asked the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to investigate the June 4 incident. In the meantime, the officers will remain on duty and are permitted to work off-duty security jobs.
Many people are familiar with the video showing Officer David Cruz kicking Noel Carter. But Mina says that the short clip doesn’t tell the whole story.
Officers Cruz and Charles Mays were moonlighting at an Orlando nightclub. According to their version of the incident, they saw Carter “attempting to grab and hold” a woman (Carter’s ex-girlfriend) who was trying to walk away. They claim that Carter was intoxicated. The officers shot him several times with a Taser, used pepper spray and attempted to restrain him. All of that, the police say, led up to the officer kicking Carter.
There are at least three videos of the incident, according to CNN. But none of them show the entire confrontation.
At a news conference, Carter’s attorney, Natalie Jackson, said, “If it were you or I that kicked someone and used a weapon against them while they were sitting passively, we would be arrested. That doesn’t happen to the police.”
She continued: “I don’t have to tell citizens what they see. It’s there. It is the police who are asking us not to believe what we see on the tape.”
Mina avoided answering reporters’ question about whether it’s acceptable for his officers to kick a suspect while he’s passively sitting, according to CNN’s report. He answered, “We are fully committed to thoroughly investigating the entire incident.”
Jackson pointed out that nothing in the police training manual permits officers to “beat, punch, kick, tase people who are in a submissive position.”
Carter, 30, is a South Florida banker. He said at the news conference that he was not intoxicated and that the police were aggressive toward him. Carter said that he hopes Cruz and Mays will be charged with battery and aggravated battery with a weapon.
Read more at CNN.