At a moment in history when the law enforcement community is desperate for every officer to be operating at the highest level of professionalism, this is not the sort of video footage they need being broadcast around the country.
In this video a man who is clearly elderly and somewhat feeble is shoved by a Buffalo, New York police officer causing him to stumble backwards falling to the ground shattering his skull on the pavement. When one of the officers stops and appears to want to render aid, another officer shoves him away and instructs the group of police officers dressed in riot gear to leave him alone as he lay there with blood draining from his skull.
Two of the police officers have been suspended without pay and a full investigation has been ordered. Initial reports by the officers claimed that the elderly man tripped and fell, but the video footage tells a very clear different story.
The Mayor released this statement about the incident:
“Tonight, after a physical altercation between two separate groups of protesters participating in an illegal demonstration beyond the curfew, two Buffalo Police officers knocked down a 75-year-old man. The victim is in stable but serious condition at ECMC. I was deeply disturbed by the video, as was Buffalo Police Commissioner Byron Lockwood. He directed an immediate investigation into the matter, and the two officers have been suspended without pay. After days of peaceful protests and several meetings between myself, Police leadership and members of the community, tonight’s event is disheartening. I hope to continue to build on the progress we have achieved as we work together to address racial injustice and inequity in the City of Buffalo. My thoughts are with the victim tonight.”
This incident is wholly unjustified and utterly disgraceful.
I've spoken with Buffalo @MayorByronBrown and we agree that the officers involved should be immediately suspended pending a formal investigation.
Do you think these police officers should be criminally charged? Do you think suspending only two of them was enough? Let us know in the comments below!