Police in Pasadena, California, have released a video of a confrontation that ends badly for the suspect as he had to be taken to the hospital with a broken leg.
The suspect, identified as Christopher Ballew, was the subject of a viral video that showed police beating him. The clip was recorded by a bystander. But, the video released by the police department seems to tell a much different story. From their point of view, officers can be heard telling Ballew to calm down — he didn’t and his decision to pull away when they were trying to cuff him earned him a resisting arrest charge.
When asked why the police released the body cam footage, Pasadena police officer William Boyer explained to KABC, “It was just in the interest of transparency and for people to understand police procedures and just the overall interest in what actually occurred during this incident.” Ballew’s leg was broken in the confrontation.
The 21-year-old suspect was pulled over for traffic violations on Nov. 9, when the video was recorded. Ballew later retained John Burton, who specializes in police brutality cases, to fight back against the department. Burton told Pasadena Now, “Why they’re even putting their hands on him and pushing him up against the car without any explanation…it is the epitome of thuggish, bad police work.” The attorney added, “When you violate basic rules of police procedure, bad things happen… That’s what happened here.” Pasadena Now also published the video in its entirety.
In a statement, the NAACP told Pasadena Now that the officer’s use of force was “reprehensible” and “inhumane.” After the incident, a police spokesperson outlined the incident bluntly, saying, “[Ballew] was able to get the baton of one of the officers. A fight ensued, and he ran. They were able to get him into custody, and he was arrested.” The city manager said that the police department immediately undertook a “use of force review” and that the review is ongoing.