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World

Web Desk
June 6, 2020

US police officers suspended for mercilessly shoving elderly protester

World

Web Desk
Sat, Jun 06, 2020
The video showed that the elderly man hit his head hard on the pavement and become motionless, following which a trail of blood could be seen below his neck. Twitter/WBFO (@WBFO)/Screenshot via The News

In yet another case of police brutality, a disturbing video has been shared thousands of times on social media showing a 75-year-old protester bleeding from his head after being violently shoved to the ground by two US police officers, who left him there and continued to move ahead.

US media outlet CBS News, whose reporter David Begnaud shared the video, reported on Friday that both Buffalo police officers had "been suspended without pay".

The video was originally filmed by a journalist from the local radio provider, WBFO-FM 88.7, and showed that the elderly man hit his head hard on the pavement and become motionless, following which a trail of blood could be seen below his neck.

'Tripped and fell'

Content warning: The video below has graphic language and shows blood

The incident had occurred late Thursday when a Black Lives Matter protest in New York's Niagara Square was coming to an end as officers of police and other law enforcement agencies started to hark people back before the start of a curfew.

Buffalo Police had in an initial statement said "one person was injured when he tripped and fell" but did not explain further, according to several US media outlets.

'Laceration and a possible concussion'

CBS News, citing its affiliate WIVB, added that the elderly man was shifted to a hospital and may have "suffered from a laceration and a possible concussion".

Reacting to the incident, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown first termed the protest as "illegal" and said he was "deeply disturbed by the video".

"The victim is in stable but serious condition" at at the Erie County Medical Center Hospital, Brown added.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Twitter the incident was "wholly unjustified and utterly disgraceful".

'Casual cruelty'

The publication quoted the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) as saying that the time when police officers could "hide behind the lie that they are protecting and serving" had passed.

"The casual cruelty demonstrated by Buffalo police officers tonight is gut-wrenching and unacceptable," NYCLU Buffalo chapter director John Curr said.

Later, US Attorney for Western District of New York James Kennedy, according to ABC News, said: "On behalf of the entire law enforcement community, I offer our sincere best wishes to the injured gentleman, as we hope and pray for his speedy and complete recovery."