A witness to an altercation between Raleigh police and a man said the use of force appeared to be justified.
Bonnie Kidder was driving by Friday and took cellphone video.
The video shows a man swinging at police. Three officers surround him, one has his baton out. The man seems undeterred.
Then an officer comes from behind and grabs the man’s legs. In the video, the man ends up on the ground.
“It was not just them being excessive. This guy didn’t look like he was going to stop for anything,” Kidder said.
The man was later identified by police as Frederick Darnell Hall, 44. Hall, who has not been charged, was later taken to WakeMed where as of Saturday afternoon he was still recovering, police said.
The incident happened just after 11 a.m. Friday at the intersection of Garner Road and MLK Boulevard.
Kidder said the man stopped his car in the middle of the road and got out. He wasn’t wearing shoes or a shirt. She said a police cruiser was behind him and an officer approached.
“There was a little bit of fear and anxiety initially because we didn’t know this guy was going to do,” Kidder said.
CBS 17 obtained two other videos. They too were shot by someone driving by and appear to have been taken later, once the man was on the ground.
Those video clips show six police officers surrounding the man, one striking his back with a baton at least 12 times.
In a second video, it appears the man on the ground bites the officer’s leg. On the video, the female police officer then kicks him in the head.
Community activists held a press conference Friday evening. They said this use of force was unnecessary.
“If it takes more than five officers to restrain someone, you’re doing it wrong. There’s a problem with your training,” said Dawn Blagrove of the Carolina Justice Policy Center.
When asked if the third video, which shows the man swinging at police would change anything in their mind, Blagrove’s response was “absolutely not.”
Authorities have not yet identified the man seen in the videos. They also haven’t said what, if any charges he’ll face.
Late Friday afternoon Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman released this statement:
Late this afternoon I was made aware of a use of force incident regarding Raleigh Police Department by the chief of police for Raleigh. I have requested that all available video including body cameras and dash cam video be provided to my office for review. I am in consultation with the state Bureau of investigation and once we have completed a review, will be making a determination as to what the appropriate next steps are. We are requesting the community’s patience as we go through this process.