A shocking video has emerged online showing two Atlanta, Georgia police officers repeatedly punching a black man and forcing his face into the pavement, after the taxi he was traveling in was apparently stopped and he was asked to show his ID. The incident is now under investigation, Georgia officials said.
Authorities said an officer had been placed on administrative leave and that the internal investigation team had launched a probe. They did so after various clips posted on social media showed two officers from the Clayton County Sheriff’s Department punching the unidentified black man, and forcing his face down into the highway.
A woman can be heard screaming: “Don’t kill him. Officer, he says he can’t breathe. He said he can’t breathe … He’s bleeding from his nose.”
Accompanying one clip, that appears to have been recorded directly next to what happened, one woman wrote: “So this happened today to my cousin he was in lyft or wateva and the man tail light was out the police stopped them the man didn’t have his License my cousin and his girl was in the car they ask him for his he said y are yal asking me for mines I’m not driving they told him to get out the car and this what happened.”
The woman posted the footage on Friday.
Later that evening, a post on the official Facebook page of the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office’s read: “After being made aware of a video posted on social media involving a Deputy using physical force on a man, Sheriff Victor Hill ordered his entire Internal Affairs Unit to come in and begin an investigation that has been on going since 8pm.”
“The Sheriff has ordered that the Deputy involved be placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation,” the statement added.
While much about the incident remains unclear, it appears to represent the latest shocking and violent encounter between white police officers and unarmed black men.
WARNING: the following video contained contains distressing scenes:
Shit like this still happens everywhere. This happened today in #Atlanta in #ClaytonCounty. There no reason they needed to handle this man like this at all. #Fuck12 #BLM #ChangeTheSystem pic.twitter.com/i7BarNkeI4
— Korey Epps (@HardKBBM) September 12, 2020
The police department did not respond to a request for comment from The Daily Boulder.