After a video surfaced of a police officer violently attacking a man on the streets of Baltimore, he was swiftly suspended. Now, according to The Hill, the officer will also be charged with first-degree assault, second-degree assault, and misconduct while in office.
The officer, now identified as Arthur Williams, had been with the Baltimore Police Department for almost a year. He had allegedly been speaking to the victim when Williams placed his hand on the victim’s chest. As the Inquisitr previously reported, the victim asked the officer not to touch him and moved Williams’ hand away. This was the catalyst that appeared to set Williams off, and he can be seen in the video hitting the victim as they both fall to the ground.
The second officer at the scene, who has not been identified, was not charged but placed on “administrative duties.” The Baltimore police department suspended the officer just after the incident, and Williams resigned as a result.
Police Commissioner Gary Tuggle said he has “zero tolerance for behavior like I witnessed on the video today. Officers have a responsibility and duty to control their emotions in the most stressful of situation.”
Now, there is a warrant out for Williams’ arrest. Prosecutor Marilyn Mosby spoke with local reporters on Tuesday and said that they were considering not only the viral video but other evidence as well in their case.
This was reportedly not the first time that the victim, 26-year-old Dashawn McGrier, had encountered Williams. The officer had arrested McGrier for various crimes in the past. McGrier’s lawyer, Warren Brown, said that Williams’ attack had a devastating effect not just on his client but on Baltimore as a whole.
“It seems like this officer had just decided that Dashawn was going to be his punching bag. And this was a brutal attack that was degrading and demeaning to my client, to that community, and to the police department,” said Brown.
Catherine Pugh (D), Baltimore mayor, addressed the incident on Saturday. She called the video disturbing, and said that she is “demanding answers and accountability.” She added that despite this incident, the city of Baltimore is working tirelessly to “bring about a new era” of policing in which all citizens feel safe and have trust in the Baltimore Police Department. Pugh also added that she nor any other member of her team will let the incident that occurred last weekend change their goals.