Disturbing footage shows a Minnesota jail officer punching and kneeing a handcuffed black man who can be heard pleading for his life as other officers restrain him.
On Monday, Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher released video of the 2016 incident, which happened before his term.
Travis VanDeWiele, who is white, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor disorderly conduct last month and has resigned his post after footage shows him viciously assaulting an African-American suspect.
The suspect, Terrell James Johnson, 24, complained the officer used excessive force while restraining him.
VanDeWiele had been a Ramsey County sheriff’s correctional officer since 2014. He has been on paid administrative leave for the last two years.
VanDeWiele is one of about five officers seen removing Johnson from a St. Paul police squad car at the Ramsey County jail after he was arrested on a theft charge.
In the footage, VanDeWiele tells him: ‘You can either step out or I’m going to drag you out, those are your options.
‘If you don’t get up I’m going to drag you.’ Van DeWiele is then seeing dragging him up off the ground.
According to the charges against VanDeWiele, Johnson had been sprayed with a chemical agent and his mouth is covered with a spit-guard mask.
He is handcuffed with his pants around his ankles. In the video, Johnson is lifted into a wheelchair-like ‘transport chair’ after he falls to the ground limp.
He is seen pushed by one deputy and then pulled by another as they try to strap him into the chair.
VanDeWiele repeatedly orders Johnson to sit back as the suspect’s hips remain raised.
Another officer can be heard saying in the background: ‘If he doesn’t sit back use pain compliance on him. ‘You’re choking [me].’
The video then shows VanDeWiele kneeing Johnson twice in the stomach, causing Johnson to protest and call all five officers ‘pigs.
Johnson screams out: ‘I’m sitting the f**k back, I’m sitting the f**k back, don’t hit me in my knees.’
When Johnson accuses the officers of using excessive force, VanDeWiele responds: ‘You ain’t seen excessive force yet.’
VanDeWiele is then seen punching him repeatedly in the stomach as other officers hold his head and neck in position.
Another officer tells him: ‘If you stop fighting, we’ll stop using force against you.’
‘Please don’t kill me. Please don’t kill me, I’m sorry,’ Johnson pleads in the video.
He can can also be heard crying out in pain as deputies push his head into his lap.
He eventually is secured in the chair and wheeled into jail. Johnson pleaded guilty to one count of theft in August 2016.
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Source: Daily Mail