A cell phone video seemingly showing a New Jersey cop punching a woman in the face outside of a New Jersey nightclub has led to a police investigation. The shocking footage, which was uploaded to YouTube on March 3, shows an intense scuffle between the officer and a group of men and women.
The incident apparently unfolded outside of Club Envy in Elizabeth, N.J. It was captured on a bystander’s phone and subsequently uploaded to the video-sharing site. Since it went viral and was picked up by numerous media outlets, the video appears to have been taken down.
Local outlets, though, captured and aired it beforehand. WPIX-TV has a news report that shows portions of the original 20-second clip:
WNBC-TV reports that the officer is still on active duty, but that authorities are investigating to learn more about the circumstances at hand. Additional details have not been released.
Here’s the full video, with some slow-motion portions that seem to show the full force of the punch:
NJ.com has more about the scenario surrounding the controversial interaction:
In the clip, which has gained more than 11,000 views since it was posted on March 3, the officer is seen attempting to break up a fracas outside of Envy Night Club on North Broad Street. After walking away from a crowd of roughly 10 to 12 people, the officer grabs hold of a man in a black vest and shoves him to the ground. Once the man falls, a woman wearing a red dress appears to grab the officer’s arm, and he responds by punching her.
A man who identified himself as the club’s owner said he didn’t know if the participants in the brawl were at the club over the weekend.
Law enforcement experts caution that those enraged by what they see on the clip should wait for the full story to emerge and for the investigation to conclude before making definitive determinations.
Many times, videos don’t show the full picture during difficult moments and crisis situations, including threats an officer may be facing. While it’s possible the cop used excessive force, we’ll have to wait for more details to come to a decisive conclusion on the matter.
(H/T: Huffington Post)
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