A police officer in Fort Worth, Texas is under investigation following the release of video footage showing him trying to use his pepper spray against a group of motorcyclists who were not interacting with him.
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram identified the officer as “W. Figueroa,” using the name listed for him in an incident report on Sunday.
According to the Dallas Morning News, Figueroa had pulled over a pickup and was citing the driver, Brittany Botella, and her passengers for blocking traffic while filming the bikers.
The footage shows Figueroa pull out his spray canister and fire it toward the bikers, who were passing by the traffic stop on US route 287. It was later posted on Facebook and YouTube by a member of the group, Chase Stone.
Stone said that he was part of a group of 200 riders who took part in the ride to “welcome back” riding weather.
One of the passengers, Grace Cho, said in the Facebook post she was sitting in the back of the pickup at the time of the incident, and that some of the pepper spray blew into her face. Stone later corroborated her account.
“I looked over and I see the people in the back of the truck ducking, covering their eyes,” he said. “They were covering their mouths and seemed to be in distress. I was like, something is going on.”
Authorities told the Star-Telegram that they received several calls accusing Stone’s group of reckless driving and obstruction of traffic. Jack Kinney, the rider who shot the video, accused police of conducting a “propaganda campaign to try to mitigate the damage.”
“What’s in the video? The people at that time, they weren’t committing any crime,” he said. “They were driving slower than the speed limit and they got pepper sprayed for it.”
Figueroa has been with the department for six years. He has been taken off patrol duties for the duration of the investigation.
Watch the video, as posted by the Star-Telegram, below.
Trump promises vets he won’t use his campaign slogan — then blurts it out seconds later
While talking with veterans on Wednesday, President Donald Trump vowed that he would not politicize the event by reciting his 2020 campaign slogan -- and then did it anyway just seconds later.
While addressing the American Veterans National Convention in Louisville, Kentucky, the president made light of the fact that he was not supposed to be using his speech to promote his reelection campaign and was only there to talk about his administration's work on behalf of veterans.
"In all things, we are putting our country first," the president said. "We are saying, let’s say 'Make America great again,' but we are almost there, 'Make America great again.' We may have to switch it. You know what we’re going to switch it to? Huh? Yeah? That is right. I will not say it here, because this is not a campaign speech."
Eugene Robinson stunned by Trump’s rant: No ‘responsible’ world leader can trust a self-proclaimed ‘chosen one’
Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson on Wednesday reacted to President Donald Trump's assertion that he is "the chosen one."
Trump made the remarks while taking questions on the White House lawn on Wednesday. The president suggested that he is "the chosen one" to take on China because he was elected by the American people.
Robinson suggested that Trump had undermined his own negotiating position.
"You get to the point where he looks at the sky and says I'm the chosen one," Robinson said following Trump's remarks. "You get to that point and you cannot -- I don't see how any responsible leader could say this is a guy I could count on."
‘That was anti-Semitism!’ ADL leader rips Trump apart on CNN over ‘disloyalty’ smear of US Jews
President Donald Trump's accusation that American Jews who vote for Democrats are somehow "disloyal" earned him a furious denunciation on CNN Wednesday from Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt.
During an interview with CNN's Jim Sciutto, Greenblatt was asked about Trump’s declaration that "any Jewish people" who vote for Democrats have "a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty."
Greenblatt did not hold back in his disgust about what the president said.