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People respond after online video shows Detroit officer striking man with baton

Posted at 10:27 PM, Oct 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-10 06:49:05-04

Is it police brutality or excessive force? People are speaking out about a recent incident involving the Detroit Police Department and a young African American male.

The incident happened at a local Meijer.

A majority of the people interviewed said they are shocked after the incident Sunday night.  Most of them said it is excessive force.  

Others said the young man in the video should have done what the officer asked. 

LaVega Rogers and her son watched the video for the first time.

"It was excessive force, he was clearly bigger then the guy, so he could have detained him without doing all of that," said LaVega Rogers.

"He shouldn't have done all that. You didn't know so you didn't have the right to be beating him," said Rogers son, John.

An off-duty DPD officer confronted a young African American male about stealing something inside the Meijer, when things escalated.

Detroit's top cop held a press conference about the incident.

"At some point during the contact the suspect became very agitated according to the officer in his report, made some profane remarks in a very hostile manner," said Police Chief James Craig.

"The officer gave the suspect several strikes to his upper thigh.  The young man then began to force the officer to the ground.  The officer administered one blow from his side handle baton striking the man in the face," said Chief Craig.

Chief Craig said his officer did what he was trained to do at the academy.  Some feel otherwise.

"I’m glad they’re here, of course, to protect and serve, that’s why I’m here with my son, in case anything happens you can detain situations because - you never know," said Rogers.

Chief Craig said they didn't find any evidence the young man inside the store stole anything.

The Detroit Police Department is still investigation going through proper protocols.