A disturbing body cam video showing a U.S. Black Army lieutenant being physically approached by two Virginia police officers at a gas station is making its rounds on social media.
While the incident happened in December, the officers’ body cam video was recently released when Lt. Caron Nazario is suing the two Windsor Police Department officers who dragged him over at gunpoint, sprayed him with pepper and threw him on the floor. Nazario was not charged with anything in the incident.
Nazario claims in his lawsuit that officers Daniel Crocker and Joe Gutierrez racially profiled him and threatened to kill him, adding that their actions had adversely affected his military career, according to Newsweek. Nazario says his constitutional rights have been violated.
The lieutenant was stopped because Crocker reported he could not see his rear license plate and claimed Nazario was evading.
It should be noted, however, that Nazario says he waited to find a well-lit area to drive past for his safety. He also said that he put a temporary license plate on the inside of his rear window, which was reportedly visible when officers reached his SUV. The vehicle was new in Nazario and it had not yet received the permanent license plates.
Nazario was in uniform when he was run over, as the video shows. He says he was on his way home from his place of work, according to the complaint.
“Graduated from Virginia State University. He was hired out of their ROTC program. He is an officer in the United States Armed Forces, “Nazario’s attorney Jonathan Arthur told The Associated Press on Friday about his client.
“He is a sworn member of the US Army. He swears an oath in support of the defense of the United States Constitution from all enemies at home and abroad – and the way these officers conduct themselves implies the oath he takes, ”added Arthur.
Gutierrez, the other officer listed in the suit, drove past the scene and heard Crocker’s call. He saw Crocker try to stop traffic and decided to join him.
According to the lawsuit, Crocker and Gutierrez immediately drew their guns when they pulled up to Nazario’s vehicle and attempted to pull him out of the car before Pepper sprayed him multiple times and threw him conflicting orders.
Gutierrez reportedly told Nazario that he was “determined to ride the lightning” – an indication of the execution with an electric chair.
The officers allegedly hit Nazario in the legs several times, threw him on the floor and questioned him. Nazario was not charged for anything.
Officials claim they used force because Nazario would not leave the vehicle, although many who saw the disturbing footage saw Nazario look scared as he tried to keep his hands in view and listen to the officers’ orders.
We’ll keep you informed of the lieutenant’s case.
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