CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson on Tuesday placed an officer on desk duty after a video emerged that appears to show the officer kicking a suspect in the head during an arrest.
The video posted online shows the suspect on the ground with an officer on top of him. A second officer then approaches and stomps on the suspect’s head. The suspect was arrested after officers chased him and found three bags of heroin on him Monday afternoon, Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said.
Charges are pending. Police have not released the identities of the officers involved.
Terrance Hobson said he shot the video that was posted Monday afternoon on Facebook showing an arrest on the city’s West Side.
The agency that investigates Chicago police misconduct, the Independent Police Review Authority, started investigating Monday night, IPRA spokeswoman Mia Sissac said.
“It’s still very early on,” Sissac said. “We immediately went over to district to try and identify the officers and move forward from there.”
According to a police report, the man bit the officer on the right ring finger before he was handcuffed. Guglielmi said the officer was treated for the bite at a hospital and the suspect also was taken to a hospital for treatment.
Guglielmi says Johnson has removed the officer’s power of arrest.
“Since his appointment, the superintendent has stated that accountability begins with him down to the last police officer and that he will tirelessly work to rebuild public trust in the Chicago Police Department,” Guglielmi said.
The Fraternal Order of Police said it disagrees with Johnson’s decision to strip powers before IPRA has completed its investigation into the incident.
The head of the police union, Dean Angelo, said the department acted too quickly.
“We have officers that are under investigation about allegations city wide. And they are working, pending the outcome in the investigation,” Angelo said. “We don’t understand why this would’ve been a different situation. Because it’s on film? I don’t know.”
Angelo said things are very “political right now,” as the city works to rebuild the relationship between Chicago’s police and the communities they serve.
“The neighborhoods and the citizens and the politicians all seem to have an idea of what police should be doing but they’ve never done police work, and I think that becomes a problem in and of itself,” Angelo said.