Seattle attorney James Egan has been at odds with the Seattle Police Department over the release of its dash-cam videos for a long time. Using the Public Records Act, Egan has requested countless dash-cam videos from the SPD archives that he believes show excess force by the department. Recently, Egan got his hands on video of an event that inspired an Office of Professional Accountability investigation.
This particular dash-cam video from May 2, 2009 was obtained by Egan after a three-year waiting period on the release of such material, and shows an SPD officer forcefully taking out purported transient Mark T. Spencer after police received a report of a "possibly armed male," involved in the kicking-and-punching assault of two people in a parking lot near First Avenue and Cedar. The police report from the event notes that officers were sent to the scene at 8:50 p.m. and were told by dispatchers that Spencer either had a knife or gun in his pocket.
The police report, penned by SPD officer Dorian Oreiro, notes:
Upon arriving the male initially refused to stop for officers, and kept his hands in his pockets despite had been given [sic] an order to lay down the ground, he did not comply with orders given to him. He was then detained and assisted to the ground where he was handcuffed. Spencer was non-compliant with officer orders.
Spencer was alert and conscious, and state [sic] that he sees us as dream, and that he doesn't know what's going on. Spencer continued stating that he was not living in his body, that it was just carbon.
Victim 1 stated that Spencer had punched him from behind in his right shoulder, then shoved him into parked cars in the parking lot. Spencer then went for an item in his sock. [Victim 1] got up and ran, Spencer giving chase.
Victim 2 told me that he observed what was going on with [Victim 1] than [sic] then ran up to him and started poking him in the chest and was yelling at him. [Victim 2] only could understand the word "Jews" from Spencer. [Victim 2] stated that Spencer was unintelligible in what he was saying, and then with an open hand punched him in his left shoulder and walked away.
While Spencer did not make a complaint to SPD's Office of Professional Accountability (OPA), an alarmed customer at a nearby restaurant who witnessed the arrest did. Egan alerted Seattle Weekly to the video yesterday, and also forwarded a copy of the official OPA investigation report, which was complete by late 2009 and concluded the use of force was justified.
In: Regional News
Tags: use of force, seattle police, spd, dashcam, raw video, excessive, homeless
Location: Seattle, Washington, United States (load item map)
Marked as: approved, featured
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