Philly Officer To Be Dismissed After Video Shows Him Slamming Handcuffed Suspect To Ground

PHILADELPHIA (CBS)—A Philadelphia police officer will soon be off the job after video shows a questionable confrontation during an arrest, the department announced on Friday.

The incident happened on July 10 around midnight on the 200 block of East Elkhart Street.

Police say Officer James Yeager, 26, was attempting to arrest a man who was actively resisting arrest by swinging his arms and kicking.

According to police, cell phone video captured Yeager in full uniform grabbing the male after he was handcuffed and forcibly slamming him to the ground.

Additional video shows Yeager placing his baton around the man’s chest, picking him up and swinging him around, causing the suspect to strike his head against the side of a pool in the street, police said in a news release.

The man being arrested was taken to Temple University Hospital for critical injuries.

“That was totally unnecessary and aggressive for no reason. He was already in handcuffs. There was no harm that could’ve been brought to the cops, but to him at that point,” said Frederick Bender of Kensington.

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross has suspended Yeager for 30 days with intent to dismiss. Yeager has been on the force for four years and was assigned to the 24th district.

The FOP plans on fighting the department on that, and it has a high success rate in doing so.

“That was totally unnecessary and aggressive for no reason. He was already in handcuffs. There was no harm that could’ve been brought to the cops, but to him at that point,” said Frederick Bender of Kensington.

“It was an ugly night out there, that guy should have just cooperated and we wouldn’t be here today,” John McNesby, President of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #5.

The FOP is defending officer Yeager, warning people not to rush to judgement over the video, because it may not show all of what lead up to this incident.

The FOP adds, the man being arrested was resisting and officers were trying to arrest him for a drug related offense.

“We are going to make sure we represent the officer, Yeager, all the way through,” added McNesby.

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