A Baltimore police officer who brutally and repeatedly punched a man has been indicted on charges of assault.
A video of the officer, Arthur Williams, emerged this Saturday, in which Williams can be seen having a verbal altercation with a man on a Baltimore street. Suddenly, Williams starts punching the man repeatedly. Williams then pushes the man onto a flight of steps and continues punching him, before finally tackling him.
Over the course of the 30-second video, Williams’ partner makes no attempt to intervene. Blood is also visibly coming from the suspect’s mouth towards the end of the incident.
TW: Police Violence
This is a video of the @BaltimorePolice reported to be from earlier today.
— deray (@deray) August 11, 2018
Williams resigned from the Baltimore Police Department on Sunday. On Tuesday, Baltimore’s state attorney, Marilyn Mosby, indicted Williams on one count of first degree assault, one count of second degree assault, and misconduct in office.
“Police Officers are sworn to protect and serve,” Mosby said in a statement. “When that oath is taken for granted and an abuse of that power is evident, we will hold them accountable to the fullest extent of the law. This is an integral part to rebuilding trust in our criminal justice system.”
On Saturday, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh said that she had seen the “disturbing” video and wanted answers. “We are working day and night to bring about a new era of community-based, Constitutional policing,” she tweeted. “[We] will not be deterred by this or any other instance that threatens our efforts to re-establish the trust of all citizens in the Baltimore Police Department.”
The victim, who was named by the Baltimore Sun as 26-year-old Dashawn McGrier, reportedly suffered a fractured jaw and ribs. His lawyer said that McGrier, who works in a warehouse, is seeking restitution payments from the city. According to the Sun, Williams had been a police officer since May 2017 and reportedly graduated from the training academy with awards for top performance.
Baltimore police have repeatedly been in the spotlight for allegations of brutality and broken relationships with the communities they are supposed to protect. Eight of the nine members of the department’s Gun Trace Task Force (GTTF) have been charged with criminal corruption, with federal prosecutors alleging that the team was used as an opportunity to rob people. In January, a reform-minded police chief was fired just a year into the job. In 2016, the Department of Justice released an extensive report highlighting a culture of lawlessness and racism within the department.