Footage of LA police knocking over a man in a wheelchair has sparked outrage across social media.
The video shows a Black man – identified as Joshua Wilson – being pushed over, beaten and handcuffed by several police officers in Downtown Los Angeles on Tuesday afternoon.
According to the LAPD, police officers were responding to an incident “involving two women who had shown indications of being in the midst of a mental health crisis”.
While this was happening, according to the report:
An estimated group of 50 protestors, who were marching in the area, surrounded the officers and began chanting ‘Let them go!’
Video footage – uploaded to @activeadvocate's Instagram story – corroborates this version of events, but protesters claimed the police officers were using “excessive force” on the women.
The situation escalated when more police turned up to outnumber the protesters. This was shortly before the incident with Wilson occurred.
The video caused outrage on social media, with many calling the what was depicted “disgusting” and saying there is “absolutely no excuse” for the level of force used.
during a peaceful protest in LA this week the LAPD knocked a disabled man out of his wheelchair, and then they brok… https://t.co/y6dMtGuRFA— AK (@AK) 1594860382
@allykerans @MayorOfLA @GavinNewsom @KTLAnewsdesk @LAPDChiefMoore yo do you think beating a protestor with a disabi… https://t.co/HhHuC6vjYg— melancholy meatsuit (@melancholy meatsuit) 1594888163
@allykerans @MayorOfLA @GavinNewsom @KTLAnewsdesk this is so upsetting to watch i cant imagine being pulled out of… https://t.co/eH4ybDPzkG— casey𓆏⁷ (@casey𓆏⁷) 1594896594
@allykerans @MayorOfLA @GavinNewsom @KTLAnewsdesk This is revolting brutality. Keep going until cops are held accountable for their actions.— ｢Dᴀɴ｣💗💛💙 (@｢Dᴀɴ｣💗💛💙) 1594904484
In response to the video being posted online, the LAPD claimed that Wilson “punched an officer in the face” so “he was taken into custody”.
The LAPD tweeted:
On July 14, approx 50 protestors attempted to interfere with 3 individuals in police custody. During the incident a… https://t.co/krMHDti8ZE— LAPD HQ (@LAPD HQ) 1594880926
Two other individuals were booked, one for Battery on a Peace Officer and the other for a felony warrant. Three o… https://t.co/VJ5e0wd2s1— LAPD HQ (@LAPD HQ) 1594880927
According to police, Wilson was arrested and taken to the Central Division Police Station.
While there, police found a loaded firearm in his backpack and charged him for being a “felon in possession of a firearm”.
Protests against police brutality and systemic racism have spread across the world since George Floyd was killed after white police officer, Derek Chauvin, knelt on his neck and pinned him to the floor on 25 May.