Thursday, December 23, 2010

Bar Patron: Bouncers, Scottsdale Officer Used Excessive Force

A Scottsdale man says a Scottsdale police officer and bouncers at Jackrabbit Supper Club used excessive force when they subdued him during a bar brawl in July 2010.

Surveillance videotape from the Old Town Scottsdale nightclub shows (victim's name removed by request, hereafter referred to as ***) standing on the sidelines when the brawl began outside the bar.

"I wasn't trying to fight back," said ***.

The tape shows *** reach up to as a bouncer turns toward him.

The tape then shows two bouncers grab *** and slam him into a wall.

After turning him around, a Scottsdale officer shows up and repeatedly strikes *** with his baton.

*** is off screen during several of the strikes.

"They were barbarians. Almost brutal," said *** of the incident.

A photograph taken afterward shows a large bruise covering a portion of ***'s right leg.

"The manner in which they acted was absolutely uncalled for," said ***.

Sgt. Mark Clark, a Scottsdale police spokesperson, said the surveillance tape tells a different story about how *** reacted to the brawl.

"He lunged towards one of the doorman and stuck out his arm, like who knows what he was going to do," said Sgt. Clark.

Sgt Clark said the Scottsdale police officer repeatedly reported that he repeatedly asked *** to get on the ground before striking him with his baton.

"The video shows that he was trying to get away. If he was doing as the office asked him to do and commanded him to do there probably wouldn't have been a confrontation," said Clark.

The courts will decide what really happened during the incident.

*** was charged with disorderly conduct and failing to obey a police officer and will appear in court early next year.

*** also plans to file a notice of claim against Scottsdale police and Jackrabbit Supper Club for $3.5 million dollars.

After CBS 5 contacted Scottsdale police about the incident, Clark asked internal affairs investigators to review the videotape of the officer hitting ***.

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