Police in Jeffersontown, Kentucky punched a man as he filmed the scene of an arrest of a couple of Black men, according to video released on his Facebook Livestream last week.
Joe Bennett of Jeffersontown says in the post that he was on his way home from work when he saw police cars surround a vehicle and decided to record the scene — from his own vehicle about 50 feet away, according to the New York Post.
“Yo, I just saw some J-Town police, five of them, pulled over a couple of Black fellas, or Black people, I'm not for sure because I can’t see,” Bennett, who is white, says at the beginning of the video. “Nothing going on, just doing my due diligence as a citizen to watch things.”
The arrest in the distance was filmed on a Facebook Livestream and linked to Twitter. He notes at one point that one of the cops even waved to him.
But things went awry at the three-minute timestamp when two other officers realized they’re being recorded and approached Bennett, the recording shows. When one of them demanded to see Bennett’s ID, he refused. He asked why and one of the officers claims: “You’re filming a crime scene investigation… and you’re involved.”
The officer then grabbed Bennett’s phone as he continued to refuse to turnover his ID. The livestream abruptly ends shortly after that.
Bennett was issued a citation for menacing and resisting arrest, which was described as an “Empty strike,” the Post writes. But Bennett claims he was hit with a “solid left hook” and had to be examined by EMTs on the scene and a doctor a day later.
The incident began when “officers were in the area investigating and making arrests related to a check fraud scheme thwarted at the Citizens Union Bank, Lt. Col. Steve Schmidt of the Jeffersontown Police Department told Spectrum News 1. One of the suspects allegedly identified Bennett as a driver involved in the attempted scheme. But Bennett was ruled out as a suspect.
“[Doing] proper police work, they should have approached me gently. I wasn’t going anywhere, I wasn’t in my vehicle, I wasn’t gonna flee. They certainly shouldn’t have hit me first and asked questions later,” he told the television news outlet.
Watch the video below:
Photo: Joseph Bennett Facebook
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