Norfolk police are refusing to release video of two interactions that led to excessive force complaints.
The Virginia Pilot initially reported on the complaints and requested video of the incidents, but according to the paper, police won’t release the video during their investigation.
Two men claim officers broke their teeth during confrontations.
Bryant Stith told the Pilot that police roughed him up after four other teens who were being followed by police jumped out of a truck and ran.
According to Stith, he was on foot and didn’t know the teens in the truck, but a police officer beckoned for him anyway. The officer, believing he was one of the suspects, allegedly slammed Stith to the ground, chipping his tooth.
“My teeth hit the cement,” Stith told the Pilot. Stith says he had trouble breathing after another officer placed a knee in his back.
Stith says after the officers ran his name, they realized he wasn’t a suspect and told him he was free to go.
According to Stith, that wasn’t good enough since they’d chipped his tooth, so he filed a complaint.
Witness Jackie Murphy recalls seeing the police chasing the teens as Stith was “walking nicely” down the street.
Stith says he’s never had any run-ins with police prior to now.
According to the Pilot, Stith’s complaint is not the first:
On March 18, Maurice Johnson was arrested in the 2400 block of Barre St. on two felony drug charges.
After he tried to kick out a police cruiser’s window in the backseat, four officers slammed his face into the ground, breaking his front teeth, giving him road rash on his cheek and sending him to a hospital. Norfolk police and the NAACP are investigating.
Watch the video below: