A Florida police sergeant has been taken off the street and placed on desk duty after he was filmed grabbing a female officer by her throat for trying to de-escalate a Black man’s arrest.
In a statement released Friday, Sunrise Police Chief Anthony W. Rosa said that Police officers were arresting a suspect who was “verbally aggressive” and was accused of battery. That’s when the unidentified sergeant arrived and became aggressive with him. The sergeant engaged in a verbal altercation with the suspect sitting inside a patrol vehicle and “escalated” the encounter, according to the chief.
The police body camera footage showed Sgt. Christopher Pullease ducking his head inside the patrol vehicle, threatening the suspect with pepper spray, and engaging in a verbal altercation with him, after he’d already been taken into custody and placed in the back of a patrol car.
Rosa called the sergeant’s behavior “inappropriate and unprofessional” and said he “unnecessarily elevated the demeanor of the suspect.”
At the same time, Rosa commended the female officer, who has been on the force for only two-and-a-half years, for her efforts to de-escalate.
“I’m very proud of this police officer,” Rosa told NBC News. “She took some definitive action. I can only imagine what she must be feeling. She’s a newer officer, and he’s a very senior sergeant.”
He noted that Sunrise officers are expected to “de-escalate emotionally charged situations” and intervene if an officer appears to lose control or display inappropriate conduct in interacting with the public.
Watch the video below.
A Sunrise Police sgt is on desk duty during an IA. Body cam vid shows him grabbing the throat of a young officer after she pulled him back from a cuffed arrestee.
“I find this behavior to be disgusting.”- Chief Rosa
— Daniel Cohen (@DCohenNEWS) January 14, 2022