Chaos at a Tuesday night City Council meeting in Carson, California, was caught on videotape. The tape shows Vera Robles Dewitt, a former councilmember leading an effort to recall Mayor Jim Dear, hitting Commissioner Jan Schaefer on the head with some papers. After being struck, "Schaefer waited a beat or two, then let out a blood-curdling shriek and rolled onto the floor in apparent agony," according to Daily Breeze newspaper.
Mayor Dear called for DeWitt to be arrested, and after the meeting was adjourned -- after midnight -- DeWitt was arrested on suspicion of battery. She was immediately released after her arrest.
"From where I stood, it was a crime," said Capt. Todd Rogers of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. "It was an intentional act of violence against another person. We're investigating it as a crime."
Rogers described the blow as a "bip," according to the Daily Breeze. Asked whether Schaefer's reaction seemed delayed, Dear said she appeared stunned. "It looked like a senior citizen who, unexpectedly, got hit on the head by a hostile person," said Dear. "It upset her to the point where she actually fell forward and lost her balance and fell onto the ground due to the hit on the head."
"It was a little peck," Robert Lesley, a recall supporter told the newspaper. "And then she rolls out on the floor. And I just said, 'Oh man, here we go.' "
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