Two officers in the state of Georgia had been fired on Thursday, only 24 hours since mobile phone videos had surfaced of the pair kicking and punching a motorist whilst in handcuffs.
No extra charges were filed, however Gwinnett County’s Police Department stated that it will be moving on with a criminal investigation on the incident.
Last Wednesday, Sargent Michael Bongiovanni had pulled a motorist, Demetrius Hollins, to the side in what is considered a routine stop, said the police Chief Butch Ayers.
Ayers, after seeing the footage, stated that he was left stunned.
“I am almost for a loss of words for what we had to go through today for the unwarranted actions of two of my officers,” stated Ayers.
“We’ve put a lot of money into recruiting, training and equipping them, and there is literally no excuse for behavior like this. This is not what we teach in the academy. This is not what we expect from our officers, and we aren’t going to put up with it.”
The officer stated that the car seemed like it was stalling, and he exited the police vehicle to talk to the driver, and smelled the scent of marijuana. He had written in the report that Hollins had been acting out of the ordinary and yelled, “I need my mom.”
Bongiovanni, who has been an officer for 19 years, wrote how he ordered the man to exit the vehicle, and a struggle occurred.
“Hollins refused to place his hands behind his back, spun around and began to actively resist arrest by bending at the waist and trying to push me away,” he said in his incident report.
The policeman said he then had to deploy a Taser on the man then put him in handcuffs.
In the footage, Officer Robert McDonald emergef from off the screen then kicked Hollins as he lay on the floor.
The department stated that an investigation is being launched and he had been fired by Thursday.
A second video later surfaced and was shot from a very different angle. The video contained Bongiovanni approaching Hollins, at the time still in his car. As Hollins then exits his vehicle with hands visibly up, the policeman proceeds to punch him in the face.
“(Bongiovanni) had the opportunity to tell us what happened in the report and when he was interviewed by internal affairs. He said nothing about a punch. In this case, what we saw on video, that punch was unreasonable and unnecessary,” Ayers stated.