An officer of the law dubbed the “Crazy Toledo Cop” online has been placed on leave after the NSFW video posted above went viral.
Published to YouTube on September 15, the nearly 5-minute video shows an officer standing over a handcuffed man and woman as well as child who is laying on his stomach. The officer is waving either a gun or a taser at the adults and screaming for them to “shut up” as they protest his actions and beg their neighbors to call more cops to the scene.
According to the Toledo Blade, the officer is Eric Hart of Washington Township. He has worked for the department part-time for about two years. He is currently on paid leave.
“He’s not in trouble, but to keep things aboveboard, we put him on administrative leave until an internal investigation is fully complete,” the chief said. “I’m not saying he did anything wrong, but we’re trying to show we’re not trying to sweep this under the rug or cover it up.”
The video begins with both adults on the ground. Officer Hart’s police report starts from the initial confrontation which was not captured on video. It tells a slightly different story.
He explained that he had stopped a vehicle on suspicion that it had an “altered” license registration sticker. At this point, a man from another vehicle (later identified as Aaron Tatkowski) approached the scene allegedly shouting “I’m [expletive] sick of you cops. I’m [expletive] sick of you harassing people for no reason.”
Officer Hart then ordered Tatkowski to step back, which he refused. Hart then pulled out his stun gun and ordered Tatkowski to the ground. Tatkowski then called on his neighbors to videotape the incident. Cassandra Meyers, the passenger from the first vehicle, got out and approached Officer Hart. He told her to get on the ground and cuffed her as well.
At the end of the video, Hart tells everyone to leave before he appears to snatch the phone recording the video and toss it aside. One bystander asks if Hart needs witnesses, to which he responds, “It’s on camera, what does it matter?” He wrote in the report that dismissing the witnesses was for their own safety.
Tatkowski was charged with misconduct at an emergency, obstructing official business, and resisting arrest. He pleaded not guilty on Monday and was released.
Meyers was charged with obstructing official business, tampering with evidence, fictitious plates, and a tax payment warrant. She also pleaded not guilty, and was released.
Watch the “Crazy Toledo Cop” video above.