An Austin, Texas police officer was recorded on video confronting a man that was already in police custody. The video, which was recorded by Peaceful Streets Project, appears to show the officer using pepper spray on a man who was handcuffed in the back of a police van.
Fox7 reports that the officer walked to the back of the van and said, “”What did I tell you about kicking the door?” before using the pepper spray.
The Austin Police Association released a statement on the incident over the weekend.
“We’re aware of the video and it’s easy for some to criticize those few seconds on tape, but what the video doesn’t show is what happened in the hours that led to that moment,” said the statement. “A full investigation will reveal more information about what led to the officer’s actions.”
However, Fox7 made sure to explain the Austin Police Department’s chemical agent guidelines, which state the following:
- Pepper spray can be used to control a person that’s either violent, resisting arrest or presents potential harm to themselves or others.
- The person must be given a verbal warning and appropriate time to comply to an order before pepper spray is used.
- And, lastly, chemical agents may not be used when a person is physically restrained unless there are no other means to control them.
Whether or not the Austin police officer will be found guilty for breaking these guidelines will come with time and what’s expected to be a lot of litigation.
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