This is the shocking moment a black Northwestern University PhD student was tackled to the ground when police thought he’d stolen the car he was driving.
Lawrence Crosby is now suing the Evanston Police Department for excessive force and false arrest following his confrontation in Chicago in October 2015.
Authorities released dashboard video recordings on Wednesday of the moment Crosby, then 25, was pulled over for a traffic stop and subsequently beaten and cuffed.
The video also included audio of the 911 call made by a woman who thought Crosby was trying to break into a vehicle, which sparked the series of events.
Footage shows police signalling for Crosby to stop in the 1500 block of Ridge Avenue in Evanston about 7pm on October 10, 2015.
He can be seen getting out of his Chevrolet with his arms in the air before telling officers he owns the vehicle.
A number of officers shouted at Crosby as they approached him with their guns drawn, before wrestling him to the ground.
Crosby, who was studying for his doctoral degree in civil engineering, repeatedly told the officers he owned the car and had the documentation to prove it.
He also tried to tell them he was fixing a piece of loose molding on the top of his car when the woman spotted him and mistakenly thought he was trying to steal it.
When police eventually realized Crosby did own the car, the student was charged with disobeying officers. The charged were later dropped in March 2016.
Crosby filed a civil lawsuit last year against the city and arresting officers. The footage was released after an alderman’s request at an Evanston City Council meeting last week, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Police justified the actions of the arresting officers saying they thought they were responding to an auto theft.
Evanston Police spokesman Joseph Dugan said the officers delivered knee strikes and open-handed strikes like they had been trained.
‘He was not injured, no bruises, his face was fine,’ Dugan said.
‘The use of force is justified,’ he said. ‘They had to make a decision with what they had at the time.’
SOURCE: Daily Mail, Emily Crane