Cell phone video captures Baltimore arrest that left black man hospitalized in a coma
A man was in critical condition in the hospital on Monday after being arrested by several Baltimore police officers in an incident that was at least partly captured on video, police officials said.
Local broadcaster WJZ-TV said family members of the man, who the footage it published showed was black, had identified him as 27-year-old Freddie Gray. He was in an induced coma with spinal injuries, it said.
Use of force by U.S. police, particularly against minorities, has come under increased scrutiny following police killings of black men in Ferguson, Missouri, New York City and North Charleston, South Carolina that have sparked nationwide protests.
The Baltimore incident occurred on Sunday morning.
“A number of officers made an arrest of a man who fled from them,” Baltimore Police Deputy Commissioner Jerry Rodriguez told a news conference on Monday.
“This is a very serious incident, that we are looking at thoroughly. I have been on the phone with the State’s Attorney’s Office and we are going to work jointly on this investigation.”
Rodriguez did not name the man, who he said was in hospital, or explain why the officers stopped him.
The officers involved had been transferred to administrative duties, Rodriguez said.
He said he did not see any use of force in the video, but added that it did not show the entire incident and that the investigation was at an early stage.
(Reporting by Curtis Skinner in San Francisco; editing by John Stonestreet)
Watch video, courtesy of WJZ-TV, below: